Scudamore Says: “He looks to have an excellent chance at the weights”
Top jockey Tom Scudamore talks us through his weekend rides and shares his thoughts on Paul Maloney’s retirement
I have four rides at Bangor tomorrow, all of which appear to have a good chances. In the opening race on the card at 2.00pm I am on board Shanroe In Milan for Charlie Longsdon. He looks to have an excellent chance at the weights. Donald McCain’s horse, Front At The Last, is clearly the main rival and the one to beat. We do have eight pounds on him though and hopefully that will be the difference. I normally have four or five rides a season for Charlie. He is an up and coming trainer who consistently has 70-80 winners a season so he does very well.
At 2.35pm I ride Beneficial Joe who has been running well all season. He’s got top weight but he is an improving type who has let nobody down all season so hopefully that will be the case again here in this contest.
Nightline is my mount in the 3.10pm for Charlie again. He ran much better on his last start in a decent race at Wetherby. He probably does have to improve again here though, but he is going the right way.
In the 3.45 I ride Rocky Elsom in the handicap hurdle which will have to bounce back to form. Then in the 4.20 I have been booked for Walter Oneeightone for Jonjo O’Neill. It’s his first run in a handicap but looks to have a stiff mark on what he has achieved so far. However the yard is in good form. Jonjo is always a pleasure to deal with.
I am riding in The Giant Bolster’s silks at 4.55 with Mahlers Star. He has been disappointing of late but I think they have found the right race for him. David Bridgewater says he has schooled well over fences. David is bullish about him and he is a pretty good judge. I am hoping the fences will see an improvement from him.
On Sunday, I have two rides at Wetherby for my brother Michael and they both have outstanding chances. Firstly I am on Sheneededtherun at 3.10pm. She ran in a decent novice hurdle at Southwell on her last start. The winner has come out and won since and the runner up also ran well. A repeat of that performance would make her hard to beat.
At 4.20pm Dinsdale is my ride. He has been running very solidly all year. I’d be very disappointed if he did not win this race.
I am not far from my 100 winners mark now. When I set out at the start of every season, I always set myself a target of a century. I have been lucky enough to do it twice and it would be great to do it for a third time. An injury stopped me doing it last season. It is a great benchmark. If you can do it consistently it shows you are operating at an elite level.
It was sad to see Paul Maloney retire this week. He is someone I have admired for a long time. He was highly respected by all his peers. Amazingly I don’t think he ever rode a Grade One or Cheltenham Festival winner. He had a great record around the Grand National course though and rode round Aintree as good as anyone.
In everything he did he always conducted himself in a professional manner from the way he dressed to way he was in the weighing room. He was also an excellent rider who was extremely intelligent. There were horses he would win on that he had no right to do so. He finished fourth in the Hennessy Gold Cup on board Monbeg Dude one year and it was an excellent Hennessy. It would probably be rated as Monbeg Dude’s best performance. He was given an outstanding ride that day. It is rides like that in which I will remember him by.
I have known Paul a long time and I will miss him. It was a pleasure to share the dressing room with him. Unfortunately he has had a lot of bad luck with injuries so he has been forced into the decision. He had a bad fall in January and he did try to make a comeback but he has just struggled to recover from it with his back and shoulder. It is sad that he has not been able to go out with a winner or on his terms but that is racing.