There was a remarkable ending to proceedings at Limerick on Sunday when 66-year-old Liam Burke rode the winner of the bumper.
Burke – who last tasted victory aboard Take Beating in June 1988 – partnered Teuchters Glory to victory in the Good Luck To All Irish Runners In Cheltenham (Pro/Am) INH Flat Race.
No stranger to big-race success having saddled Thyne Again to achieve Grade One glory as a trainer, Burke has also won the Thyestes Chase with My Murphy and Galway Plate with Sir Frederick as a handler.
However, it has been a long 34-year wait to add to his previous 17 victories under rules in the saddle.
Burke – who is the father of top professional rider Jonathan Burke and will now head to Cheltenham to support his son at the Festival – believes this will go down as one of his greatest achievements within racing.
He said: “That was mighty!
“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.
Burke speaks to Kevin O'Ryan in this enjoyable interview from Limerick
“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.”
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