How Patrick Mullins unearthed a wondermare
Not only did Patrick Mullins enjoy an unbeaten partnership with Annie Power early in her career, riding her to three bumper wins and a maiden hurdle victory, but he was in effect the person who discovered her and recommended to his father Willie she would be a fine addition to the team.
Recalling those days yesterday, the nine-time champion amateur said: "Jim Bolger trained Annie Power and asked me to ride her in a bumper at the 2012 Galway festival.
"I wasn't too impressed with her – she was very, very green. It took her a while to get the hang of things and she scrambled to win.
"When I rode her at Wexford on her second start, she blew me away. It was if she was a different mare. She won by 15 lengths and pulling her up after the finish was the hardest part. Jim Bolger told me he thought she could be better than Quevega. I laughed at him at the time but I knew she was very good."
On her first start for the Mullins stable and the Riccis, Annie Power won a two-runner event at the Listowel festival before scoring on her hurdling debut at Thurles.
Mullins recalled: "I was chasing the record for the number of winners ridden by an amateur in one year and it was agreed I could ride her at Thurles.
"She was quite masculine and didn't ride like a filly. I never rode her in a race again but I did ride work on her a few times at the Curragh. The rest as they say is history. She was very special."