Monday 16 October 2017

Emotional Ryanair boss Michael O'Leary pays glowing tribute to wife Anita following Cheltenham Gold Cup victory

EXCLUSIVE

Don Cossack ridden by Bryan Cooper celebrates winning the Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup Chase alongside owner Michael O'Leary (second right) and his wife Anita Farrell
Don Cossack ridden by Bryan Cooper celebrates winning the Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup Chase alongside owner Michael O'Leary (second right) and his wife Anita Farrell
Don Cossack ridden by Bryan Cooper (centre) celebrates winning the Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup Chase with trainer Gordon Elliott (far right) and owner Michael O'Leary (second right) and wife Anita
Michael O'Leary celebrates with the trophy with wife Anita

Eimear Rabbitte

Ryanair boss Michael O'Leary has paid a glowing tribute to his wife Anita following his victory in the Cheltenham Gold Cup.

The father of four described it as an “outer body experience” after Bryan Cooper romped to victory on Don Cossack to claim the first Gold Cup victory for Gigginstown House Stud in 10 years.

After a bad start to the week, O'Leary said his second Gold Cup win feels “equally as good as the first one”.

“These things are bloody hard won,” O'Leary told the Independent.ie.  " I didn't think we would win a second one, even before the race but it's like I have died and gone to heaven. It is like an outer body experience.”

O'Leary said he was delighted to have his glamorous wife by his side for yesterday's historic victory.

“I always like to try and have a winner when Anita is here as she doesn't go racing that often with the children so it is very nice to win a Gold Cup when she is here.

Read more here:

“She was here when we won ten years ago, but there were not as many children ten years ago so it's wonderful. I can't believe it.”

It was also an emotional day for Meath GAA goal keeper Louise Dunne, the groom of Gold Cup champion Don Cossack.

GAA and racing lover Lousie, who works for trainer Gordon Elliot, had tears in her eyes as she stepped up to receive her award.

It has been a bitter sweet week for Gold Cup winning trainer Gordon Elliot following the loss of his after horse No More Heroes was put down following his fall on Wedesday.

Kerry jockey Bryan Cooper was over the moon, adding: “I can't believe that has happened. It as over so quick.”

There was also plenty of celebration for trainer Willie Mullins as he was awarded the Irish Independent Leading Trainer Award for the tenth time.

Sky Sports presenter Rachel Wyse, Minister Justice Frances Fitzgerald and ex politician Charlie McCreevy, were among the crowd on the final day of the Cheltenham festival.

Read more here:

Online Editors

Independent.ie Comments Facility

INM has taken the decision to remove the commenting facility on its online platform Independent.ie to minimise the legal risk to our business that arises from Ireland's draconian libel awards system.

We continue to look forward to receiving comments through direct email contact or via social media, some of which may still be featured on the website Independent.ie


Editor's Choice

Also in Sport