Aidan Coleman says that connections have to be “thankful” for the journey 2019 Stayers’ Hurdle hero Paisley Park has provided as the Irish pilot discussed the horse’s upcoming campaign.
Emma Lavelle’s charge is a three-time Grade 1 winner and secured his finest hour at Prestbury Park just over two seasons ago when putting a fine field to the sword in devastating fashion under Coleman, his fifth and final win of that campaign.
It wasn’t as straightforward the season after despite a second win in the Cleeve in the January, with the loss of two shoes a reasonable excuse for a below-par performance in a bid to defend his crown.
But he regained his Long Walk title at Ascot later in the year before a battling third at Gloucestershire’s showpiece event three months later.
Speaking on the Paddock Picks Podcast, Coleman believes that slower ground would’ve been more beneficial.
“I’m convinced Paisley would have won this year’s Stayers Hurdle on slower ground”, he said.
“I thought he did really well to finish where he did. If it was a bit slower, he would have won – he couldn’t really get into it.
“He was a bit unlucky in that regard, but you can’t really call a horse like Paisley unlucky. We need to be very thankful for what we’ve had and hopefully, the journey is still going.
“He’s been fantastic.”
This year’s Champion Chase winning jockey, however, believes that old foe Thyme Hill will be difficult to beat.
“Aintree was a write-off. You have to be very worried about Thyme Hill. I love that horse, it’s just a shame he’s in the same division as Paisley.
“He’s probably one of my favourite horses in training that I’ll never ride.
“He’s going to be very hard to beat – simple.”