Throughout our 2018/19 season, Cheltenham Gold Cup and TV pundit for ITV Racing's Mick Fitzgerald, travels the country and Emerald Isle in search of the stories that make The Festival™ presented by Magners Four Days of Extraordinary.
WATCH THE FULL VIDEO BELOw of Nortons coin the 100-1 gold cup winner
Joining him on occasions will be the Real Gold Cup as he brings to life all the incredible stories behind the best week of Jump Racing.
The first episode followed Mick to the heart of the Cotswolds where he met TV presenter Lee McKenzie who surprised him with the original 1924 Gold Cup trophy. The racecourse has recently been reunited with the trophy having been in a bank vault since the 1970s but only Gold Cup winners are allowed to handle it. Lee chats to Mick about The Festival and his memories and sends him on his way to start his journey – first strop, Ireland.
Day one in Ireland, Mick met with the dynasty that is The Mullins family and chatted about their current careers as well as their fond memories of their father and Dawn Run. Day two the Gold Cup visited the home of Magners, the official partner of The Festival 2019 and was taken on a tour following an apple!
Mick Fitzgerald, says, “I have been lucky enough to win the Gold Cup on See More business in 1999 and I am looking forward to meeting some extraordinary people, visiting the home of Magners and meeting the stallion who has bred many Festival winners plus much more.”
The next part of the tour took part in an Extraordinary game of golf on Cheltenham Racecourse with English professional golfer Andrew ‘Beef’ Johnston versus 20 time Champion jockey Sir AP McCoy and Mick.
Beef was met by keen golfers AP and Mick for a game of golf on the actual Cheltenham Festival racecourse, where holes were laid and challenges were set. After being weighed out with their golf clubs in the jockeys weighing room, the first challenge was a putting competition nearest to the Gold Cup in the Parade Ring. This was followed by four holes on the course, which included the Cross-Country Course and finished with a Flop Shot lesson from Beef.
Having been given a lesson in golf around the course, it was Micks and AP’s turn to give Beef a riding lesson and introduced him to the Equicizer. Like a duck to water and dressed in the famous green and gold striped silks, Beef was given a riding lesson and impressed both champion jockeys with his riding skills.
Andrew ‘Beef’ Johnston said, “This was only my second time at Cheltenham Racecourse and it was an honour to be in the company of two jockey legends. Playing on the actual racecourse was definitely extraordinary but great fun and ending the day on the equicizer was an experience but I’m happy to say I am going to stick to the day job.”
As part of a series that will run throughout the 2018/19 season, Mick Fitzgerald, has been travelling the country in search of the stories that make The Festival™ presented by Magners Four Days of Extraordinary.
WATCH THE FULL VIDEO BELOW VISITING THE MULLINS FAMILY
WATCH THE FULL VIDEO BELOW VISITING Lee McKenzie
WATCH THE FULL VIDEO BELOW OF MICK AND A.P MCCOY PLAYING GOLF WITH ANDREW 'BEEF' JOHNSTON AT CHELTENHAM RACECOURSE
WATCH THE FULL VIDEO BELOW OF MICK VISITING THE MAGNERS FACTORY
the extraordinary blog
Day One: champion day, CAN BUVEUR D’AIR RECREATE ISTABRAQ’S ICONIC FESTIVAL MOMENTS?
Jumping’s equine stars earn more long-lasting love from fans than the heroes and heroines of the Flat but there are some who have found that affection much harder to come by.
DAY TWO: LADIES DAY, THE QUEEN MOTHER OF ALL RACEDAYS
A large gin poured, small bet placed and convivial company gathered for one of the best days out in racing. The choice of tipple may change but a drink and a bet, a pint and a punt, will be the staple of many Cheltenham Festival racegoers.
DAY three: HOW THE IRISH SADDLE UP FOR THE FESTIVAL?
Many people come to the Cheltenham Festival for the craic but there can be no craic without the Irish. So integral to the atmosphere during the week are visitors from across the Irish Sea that day three is now known as St Patrick’s Thursday, due to its proximity to the day on which Ireland celebrates its patron saint.