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Sunday 11 December 2016

Dream win for Varley family

Published 12/08/2015 | 02:30

John Varley and his daughter Niamh celebrate after Elusive Emir won the Croker Cup
John Varley and his daughter Niamh celebrate after Elusive Emir won the Croker Cup

Elusive Emir topped a fine line-up of thoroughbred stallions to win the Croker Cup for the Varley family from Clonbur in Co Galway.

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It was a truly emotional win for John Varley and his 19-year-old daughter Niamh, who created history when becoming the first ever female hander, and the youngest ever, to win this coveted class for thoroughbred stallions.

"I've been coming to the RDS for 30 years and always dreamed of winning the Croker," John said.

Elusive Emir by Elusive Quality, was sold for $400,000 as a yearling and was put into training with Sir Michael Stoute, but suffered a career-ending injury before he made it to the track.

Since coming to Ireland in 2013 he has proved popular with breeders and this season covered some 70 mares, including the multiple-winning Parkmore Evita, a full-sister to the champion chaser Sizing Europe, and 22 Connemara mares.

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