Another story in the remarkable life of Carlow horse trainer Willie Mullins unfolded recently when he capped a memorable Cheltenham by winning the Thomas Pink award for top trainer at the meeting for the first time.
Mullins had gone into the last day of the Festival level with five others on two winners after his Tuesday double with Hurricane Fly and Quevega.
And he clinched the crown with another double on the final afternoon.
Mullins is is the first Irish trainer to take the title since Edward O'Grady shared the award in 1996 and is now the leading active Irish trainer at the festival and third on the all-time list behind Arkle's trainer Tom Dreaper, who had 26 winners, and Vincent O'Brien with 23.
"We have had a fantastic week," said a delighted Willie. "My horses all ran as well as expected and it has been by far my most successful
The biggest win of the festival for Mullins was of course that of Hurricane Fly. It was his first race outside Ireland, where he had beaten the same horse, Solwhit, in three previous outings this season. While there was no form to link him to the best of the British, though, the punters had enough faith in the horse to send him off favourite at 11-4.
Mullins lost his father, a legendary figure at the Festival, in October and he was struggling to keep his emotions in check as he explained how some of the lessons handed down in the past had come to his aid at difficult times.
"One thing he taught me was to have patience with good horses," Mullins said. "You have to be prepared to wait and wait, and we've done that on occasions during Hurricane Fly's career. When he led on the run-in today, I'd like to think he was there, urging us on.