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Tinkler's analysis has high Regard

In the lead up to the Melbourne Cup you won't go a day without hearing some mention of Dermot Weld and his historic achievements Down Under, winning 'the race that stops a nation'.

Weld is widely hailed for saving the race, ensuring its global standing, but this year it will be a Curragh-based training colleague who will look to create his own piece of history.

Despite enjoying multiple Group One success as a jockey, last year Murtagh retired from race riding to concentrate on his training career after owner Andrew Tinkler continued to grow his string of horses and sent the majority to Murtagh's base at the edge of the Curragh.

While admitting that he missed Murtagh the jockey, Tinkler is relishing the prospect of seeing his colours being carried by two horses in the Melbourne Cup tomorrow saddled by Murtagh the trainer.

"Everyone would miss Johnny riding as he was just a fantastic jockey but we've got a great partnership and I think it is working really well," said the CEO of the Stobart Group.

"We help each other and that is what it's all about," Tinkler continued. "Johnny has great staff and Ross (Coakley) and Val (Keatley) have done a great job with Mutual Regard and Royal Diamond over here.

"To have two runners here in the one year is a testament to what Johnny has done with the horses.

"He has got the right horses but he has always been able to get them here to this place today."

Tinkler admitted to spending a lot of time analysing each horse in the Melbourne Cup this year on different statistics and comparing them to previous winners which resulted in Mutual Regard coming out on top.

"I spent a lot of time on it but at the end of the day it is a horse race and anything can happen but it is good to know that we are down here with a definite chance."

After watching Mutual Regard's jockey Damien Oliver steal the show at Flemington on Saturday, Tinkler was delighted with his choice.

"Damien showed here on Saturday what a great jockey he is and we had quite a few jockeys ringing up looking for the ride but I watched the video of Damien winning it a few years ago and it was very inspirational and between Johnny, myself and Alison we thought it was a really good choice. He's got the experience and he's a top, top jockey.

"And Steven Arnold went close in the race a couple of years ago and I think he'll really suit Royal Diamond as well."

Time will tell if Tinkler's stats are backed up and if Murtagh can go that bit better in the Melbourne Cup as a trainer than he did as a jockey but if you are going to get up early in the morning to watch it, there is a good chance you could witness another piece of Irish sporting history.


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