Paisley Park pulls it off

  • by Staff Writer
  • Thursday, 14th March 2019

West Ham-supporting racehorse owner Andrew Gemmell is celebrating tonight after his mount Paisley Park won the Stayer's Hurdle.

As we reported on Monday, Gemmell - who is registered blind - entered the gelding in today's 3pm race at the Cheltenham Festival.

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And 11-8 favourite Paisley Park's win proved to be a hugely popular one, as he beat 33-1 outsider and runner-up Sam Spinner into second place.

"I can't believe it's happened," the Hammers told Radio Five Live. "It's fantastic. I'm in tears. Wow. I couldn't see the race, but that roar is incredible!"

Gemmell's joy was shared by trainer Emma Lavelle, who declared herself to be "thrilled" by Paisley Park's win. "He's delivered for us the whole season and he's done it again," said Lavelle.

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"He was a bit further back than I expected, but the man in charge [jockey Aidan Coleman] knew what he was doing. There are so many people behind this horse and I think they just blew him up the hill.

"We're going to enjoy the moment. I can't say quite how bad our hangover is going to be in the morning!"

Gemmell, a season ticket holder at West Ham is a regular in Plaistow's Black Lion, where he shares his passion with the pub's Irish landlord, Tom Friel. He was also present at Cheltenham on Thursday as Paisley Park romped home.

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