Grand National win for Morris: The real value of heart-felt sport

SPORT has become the life blood of communications, especially traditional television stations.

 Its sale via pay-to-view channels is a primary force in shaping fans’ consumption. The sums are astronomical. Discovery paid €1bn to broadcast the Olympics from 2022. National broadcasters, even the BBC, are secondary. RTÉ lost rugby’s Six Nations from 2017. This evolution has empowered saleable superstars too — Rory McIlroy has a “multi-year” deal worth over €200m with US sportswear giant Nike. This is the high- testerone, increasingly remote end of sport but the age-old values that makes sport such a central part of our lives were obvious at Aintree on Saturday.

Tipperary-based trainer Mouse Morris sent the 33/1 Rule The World out to win the Grand National. Owned by Michael O’Leary and riden by teenager David Mullins the win put Morris in a pretty exclusive club — trainers who have won the Cheltenham Gold Cup and Grand National. He also won the Irish Grand National last month with Rogue Angel.

You would not have to be overly sentimental to recognise that Morris’ great run of success is overshadowed by the death of his son Christoper last year but as any real sports fan knows there’s nothing like success to lift a black cloud, to mend a broken heart. And therein lies sports’ real worth, not the billions spent on TV rights to fill between the ads. It, as Tolstoy told us, acts like a poultice on a wound.


Kya deLongchamps advises us to research, plan and keep our heads during online auctionsHow to keep your head during an online auction

Columnist and trained counsellor Fiona Caine offers guidance to a woman who’s growing resentful of her widowed mum’s needy behaviour.Ask a counsellor: My mother is so clingy since losing my dad – what can I do?

Amid all the uncertainty, this year’s London Fashion Week has quietly set about its task of asking how women will dress for the decade ahead, writes Paul McLauchlan.The trends you'll be wearing next season - from London Fashion Week

More From The Irish Examiner