I admit I hadn't fully noticed. I know there was a lot on my mind the last few weeks with the exam and work and everything, but the other day I looked through the Racing Post and noticed that the leading trainer in prize-money in Britain so far this season is the Master of Ballydoyle himself, Aidan O'Brien.
Just for the record, he (so far) has won nine races from fifty runs, a strike rate of 18%; and total prize-money of £1,031,022.
Currently second is Michael Bell, with £993,317. Obviously, Motivator is responsible for most of that, and Bell could be top of the table after the Eclipse Stakes at Sandown next Saturday.
Incidentally, Aidan's largest earners this season so far are:
Virginia Waters, £221,448;
Gypsy King, £68,950;
Ad Valorem, £49,500;
Indigo Cat, £35,240;
Wolfe Tone, £31,990;
Mona Lisa, £29,532;
All Too Beautiful, £29,000.
Unfortunately, neither Footstepsinthesand nor Gypsy King will be running any more races for the Ballydoyle/Coolmore team. But I have a hunch that Ace could be the main standard bearer for Ballydoyle in Group 1 races for the rest of the season.
But if you look at bare statistics, do they mean that John Oxx is the leading Irish trainer? So far in Britain this season, his record is two runs, two victories, both at Royal Ascot at York (Azamour and Beautyandthebeast), for a total of £232,000 in prize-money and a 100% strike rate. So does that mean he's a better trainer than Aidan? Answers on a postcard!
P.S. I must acknowledge the Racing Post for statistics.