Grand National hero Ryan Mania is all set to go for a racing double this weekend – provided Auroras Encore gets the all-clear, writes Kenny Paterson.
The 23-year-old declared himself fit to tackle the Scottish National at Ayr on Saturday, while handing out the medals at the third Meigle Run in Galashiels last Friday.
He had suffered a horror fall at Hexham just 24 hours after claiming the biggest win of his career at Aintree.
But trainer Sue Smith said this week that if the rain falls on Ayrshire, Auroras Encore will not run, although the forecast is to be dry.
Mania told The Southern: “I am fully fit, it is just down to whether the owners and trainers wish to go for it.
“I am desperate to get back racing.”
Despite a hectic schedule for the Clovenfords jockey, whose reign as Braw Lad officially ends tomorrow when his successor is named, Mania still made time to visit the Meigle Run, organised by Gala Harriers to raise cash for Rowan Boland Memorial Trust. Kelso’s Colin Welsh claimed the senior trophy for the three-mile race in 17 minutes and eight seconds, beating team-mate Graeme Murdoch, who was the reigning champion.
Overall, 200 runners took part, including many youngsters in the junior fun run around the Gala Cricket Club pitch.
In total, over £1,100 was raised for the charity, which also took the opportunity on Friday to hand over a cheque for £750 to Gordon’s wheelchair athlete Samantha Kinghorn to help fund her trip to Switzerland next month for a world class event.
Samantha said: “It is a blindingly fast track and I will be competing against athletes from across the globe.
“Without the support of the trust, I would struggle to be able to go.”
Mania, who presented the cheque, added: “It is great what the trust is doing. I have no doubt there are some future jockeys, rugby and football players taking part in the running today.”
Other results: 1st Female – F. Dalgleish, 20.08; 1st Male Vet Over 50 – D. Nightingale, 20.19; 1st Female Vet Over 40 – J. Forbes, 20.29; 1st Junior Male, J. Agnew – 20.18; 1st Junior Female – R. Fagan, 25.23.