Willie Mullins: trainer of Clondaw Warrrior, who did not run on Lasix
PICTURE: Getty Images
By Lee Mottershead 12:45PM 15 AUG 2016
MONDIALISTE‘S success in the Arlington Million provided another feather in the cap of trainer David O’Meara and his jockey Danny Tudhope, who gave the smashing six-year-old a super ride to win the famous prize.
The victory also provided a nod to the sagacity of owners Geoff and Sandra Turnbull, who in July 2014 paid €190,000 for Mondialiste, then in training with Freddy Head for the Wertheimer brothers.
Since then the son of Galileo has earned well over £1 million, his achievements highlighted by two North American Grade 1 triumphs and a fine second to Tepin in the Breeders’ Cup Mile.
The Turnbulls bought Mondialiste with the hope of standing him as a stallion at their stud near Hartlepool. The Hartlepool breeding industry is set for a major fillip.
One aspect of Saturday night in Chicago that is less enjoyable to note relates to the decision of European connections to use the anti-bleeding, and arguably performance-enhancing, drug Lasix.
Two weeks ago this column featured strong comments opposing the use of raceday medication in the US from Andre Fabre, who spoke after his former stable star Flintshire annexed a turf Grade 1 at Saratoga for Chad Brown. The horse, who never bled when based in France, was racing on Lasix.
‘When in Rome’
A number of Europe’s top racing and bloodstock figures have previously spoken out against the use of raceday drugs in America, so it was disappointing to see not only Mondialiste but also Godolphin’s Tryster and Ballydoyle’s entire Arlington team all listed on the official results charts as having competed on Lasix.
The ‘when in Rome’ approach can be hard to resist for understandable reasons, but its employment also surely hampers attempts to challenge the status quo in the US, while it makes any wider sense of Europe taking the moral high ground seem ridiculous.
Fortunately there was a ray of light in the form of Galway Hurdle winner Clondaw Warrior, who finished second in the American St Leger when not helped by raceday drugs. Congratulations, on more than one level, are due to the horse, trainer Willie Mullins and all the connections.
Read Lee’s column every Monday in the Racing Post