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Iconic trainer reveals why Ireland is ‘best in the world’ amid racing dominance

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MICK CHANNON believes horse-racing is “a way of life” for Irish trainers, which is why they are the “best in the world” at breeding.

Irish trainers have been dominant both at home and abroad, with Willie Mullins leading the way with over 1,000 Cheltenham winners reached this year.

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Willie Mullins and Irish trainers have been dominant against their British rivalsCredit: John Walton/PA Wire
Mick Channon believes it is because horse-racing is a way of life for Irish trainers

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Mick Channon believes it is because horse-racing is a way of life for Irish trainersCredit: Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

Aidan O’Brien, meanwhile trained his landmark TENTH Epsom Derby with ‘City of Troy’.

Former Manchester City and Southampton footballer Channon was speaking to BoyleSports, who offer the latest Royal Ascot odds.

And he said: “The Irish are doing what they’ve always done, and that’s breeding great horses!

“They’re the best in the world at it, it’s part of their DNA. They’ve got all the countryside around and everything else which goes with it to make them so successful.

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“It’s a way of life for them, and they’re brilliant at it. You have to hold your hands up to them and acknowledge their success.”

Asked if he thought Ireland’s superiority was “healthy” for the sport, the 75-year-old responded: “It’s healthy for them, but then egos come into it and people with big money eventually get in to buy the horses. 

“It’s a bit different with the Jumps, where you can buy success, but not quite the same on the Flat.

“They’re rich lads, and they want to be up at the front, and be seen winning, and they’ve gone to the right place because the Irish are the best in the world, no doubt about that.

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“I don’t understand all the politics of the current situation in the UK, but it’s very difficult for smaller yards to compete.

“The Irish have been doing it amazingly well for years.

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“There will always be opportunities to compete, you have to find that niche.

“I was very naive when I started training, thought I was going to be the best, but you find out pretty quickly that without winners you won’t survive very long.

“In the sprinter miles, you could compete against the best and that’s where we targeted all of our good fillies and colts in the early days.”

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