Limerick at the heart of horse racing history

Mary Tynan with 66 year-old Liam Burke who was a popular winner with Teuchters Glory in the concluding race at Greenmount Park on Sunday.

LIAM Burke’s 35 year wait for a winner came at Greenmount Park in Patrickswell on Sunday.

The affable Corkman guided 9/2 shot Teuchters Glory to victory in the closing bumper. For good measure, he was also the trainer and part-owner of the winner.

Remarkable, however, was that Burke had celebrated his 66th birthday a few days before the outing, making him the oldest winning jockey in a Century. 

For the record, the oldest winning jockey up to now was Harry Beasley, who rode a winner at Punchestown in 1923. 

“That was mighty!” Burke told Racing TV afterward.

Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter

“I lost weight and it was a mad notion I took to come back. My knees gave me trouble all along but got both replaced, although it took me ages to get back right. I ride out four or five horses every day and was 66 last Monday.

“I previously rode 38 point-to-point winners and 17 on the racecourse and actually lost my 7lb and 5lb claims in the past, before the numbers went back up. My last point to point winners were in 1991.”

He added: “He (Teuchters Glory) is a fair horse but has been hard to keep right. We decided to come back for a bumper as I wanted to keep him as a novice for next season.

“This is very high on my career achievements and is up there with winning the Galway Plate (as a trainer).

“Everyone thinks I’m mad, but you have to be mad to do this job! I’ll probably keep going.”

No doubt, Burke, like thousands of others around the country, will be glued to the television coverage of the four-day Cheltenham Racing Festival which begins today (Tuesday).