‘All changed’ – Gary Pallister reveals Sir Alex Ferguson’s tough stance on horse racing when he was playing at Man Utd

SIR ALEX FERGUSON used to drop any Manchester United player who attended the horse racing, according to former defender Gary Pallister.

The legendary Red Devils boss has been ever-present at the Cheltenham Festival over the past few years.

And Fergie is being tipped to land a whopping £250,000 windfall at Prestbury Park as he is the co-owner of chaser Protektorat.

But Pallister, who played for Man Utd between 1989 and 1998, has revealed the Scot was not always a fan of the racing.

Speaking to BoyleSports Horse Racing Betting, he said: "My favourite memories of Fergie and horse racing is that if he found out you've been to the horse racing, he'd drop you. He wasn't into it.

"He didn’t play golf and he didn't like horse racing. Now he loves his golf and his horse racing and owns horses.

"Back in the day, he wasn't OK with the lads going off for a day at the races, but that's all changed.

"He's obviously been involved for quite a while now with his good friends from Manchester and had some good success there."

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Ferguson has attended Cheltenham over the past few yearsCredit: Getty

Pallister was then quizzed on whether Fergie would let the players go to Cheltenham as it is one of the highlights of the horse racing calendar.

But he quickly dismissed the notion, adding: "God no! He wouldn't allow us to go to Cheltenham.

"That's right in the middle of the season when it's getting to the tickly bit. Cheltenham week, no chance.

"There was every chance we'd be playing in the middle of the week anyway so that was never on the agenda.

"The ones we used to go to were at the end of the season at Chester when the season was done. It was always a good day out for the lads if we'd won something that season."

Cheltenham continues on Wednesday with Ladies' Day and will run until Friday – when the flagship Gold Cup race takes place.

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