What you didn’t know about… Ballabriggs

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  • Trainer Donald McCain on the 2011 Grand National winner who takes it all in his stride.

    Fact file

    Stable name: Briggsy

    Age: 11

    Height: 17hh

    Breed: thoroughbred

    Sire: Presenting

    Dam: Papoose

    Damsire: Little Bighorn

    Discipline: racing

    Owner: Trevor Hemmings

    Trainer: Donald McCain

    Jockey: Jason Maguire

    Groom: Gary Grogan

    Best ever result: first, Grand National 2011

    Five things you didn’t know…

    1 He has been under the hammer twice in Irish auction rings: for 12,000 Irish guineas as a foal in 2001 and for €32,000 as a yearling 11 months later.

    2 He was born in Ireland on 27 April 2001 in Co Tipperary. His breeder, the late Sarah Jackson, raced his dam Papoose, whose sole win came in a point-to-point.

    3 He has never won a Grade One race, but two of his family have. Hi Cloy, his dam’s half-brother, won four top-level chases and For Auction, a half-brother to his grandam, won the 1982 Champion Hurdle.

    4 His maternal two-greats grandam Tourina showed no racing talent but proved a fine hunter, following the Ward Union Staghounds in Co Meath half a century ago.

    5 He has started at odds-on favourite twice in his 22 runs and was beaten both times. He slipped going into the first fence at Leicester three years ago and he finished second at Kelso in his pre-National outing last year.

    To read the full interview with Donald McCain about Ballabriggs see the 12 April issue of H&H

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