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Dublin: 8 °C Friday 18 October, 2019
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'I've won this race a thousand times in my head in my dreams as a child'

Davy Russell was in a jubilant mood after winning the Grand National.

Jockey Davy Russell on Tiger Roll celebrates winning the Randox Health Grand National Handicap Chase.
Jockey Davy Russell on Tiger Roll celebrates winning the Randox Health Grand National Handicap Chase.

AN EMOTIONAL DAVY Russell paid tribute to those who had supported him over the years after the jockey won his first Grand National in 14 attempts at Aintree today.

Tiger Roll, owned by Ryanair chief Michael O’Leary, also gave trainer Gordon Elliott a second win, having previously triumphed with Silver Birch in 2007.

“The only time I enjoyed cleaning up the grass when dad cut it was around this time of the year, because I could build my own national fences out of the grass,” a jubilant Russell told ITV afterwards.

“I’ve won this race a thousand times in my head in my dreams as a child. I’m just thinking of my kids at home now that they can be part of this wonderful event. I love it so much. I’ve been coming here for years hoping, but satisfied leaving not winning it, because it’s such a marvellous event and now it’s just amazing to have finally have done it.”

Cork-born Russell thanked all those who made the victory possible, including Elliot and his late mother.

“It’s a credit to Gordon and his team and the owners,” he said. “I’ve a brother-in-law at home that keeps the whole show going for me, my brothers and sisters and dad and obviously with mam passing recently, she was a marvellous woman. She got me out of bed at six o’clock in the morning to drive me around the country. They always knew it was worthwhile for their child.

“Winning confined maidens around Inch or Dromahane or Tallow used to satisfy me and now I’ve won this, it’s fantastic, I’ve had a brilliant career, great people around me and I hope everyone that has supported me along the way can enjoy this as much as I will.”

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Davy Russell steers Tiger Roll to dramatic Grand National win at Aintree>

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Paul Fennessy

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