Tuesday 25 July 2017

Robbie makes history at Punchestown with Gold Cup

Finn Kelly, from Naas, at the Punchestown Festival. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins
Finn Kelly, from Naas, at the Punchestown Festival. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins

Sean O'Grady

The sun came out on day two of the Punchestown Festival as Robbie Power made history with his Gold Cup win.

Power soared to victory with Sizing John, becoming the first jockey to win the Gold Cup at Punchestown, Cheltenham and Leopardstown in the same year.

"It's fantastic. He put his head down and he tried his heart out. Full credit to him that he was able to still win. It was hard work for him and that's the end of a long season.

"For a horse to win three gold cups? It's never been done before and it will probably never be done again," he told the Irish Independent.

His wife Hannah, who was one of the judges for the best dressed competition, was beaming with pride.

"He's on fire. I don't know [what his secret is]. It's great. All his hard work over the years has paid off. I'm delighted for him and really proud," she said.

Aisling O’Loughlin, Linda Stinton, Naomi Clarke and Hannah Power, judges of the Bollinger Best Dressed Lady. Photo: Michael Chester
Aisling O’Loughlin, Linda Stinton, Naomi Clarke and Hannah Power, judges of the Bollinger Best Dressed Lady. Photo: Michael Chester

On the risk of injury in his profession, she added: "It's his job, it's what he does, so you can't be fretting. The risk comes with it, that's all part of it."

Sophie Edghill from Dunlavin, Co Wicklow, came out on top of the style stakes as she was crowned Best Dressed for day two of Punchestown.

Read more: Punchestown Day Two as it happened: Sizing John creates history as Gordon Elliott hits back in title race

The student teacher beat out competition from hundreds of competitors and will be fast-tracked to Friday's final, which will be judged by TV personality Vogue Williams.

Sophie Edghill, from Dunlavin, Wicklow, the winner of the competition. Photo: Damien Eagers
Sophie Edghill, from Dunlavin, Wicklow, the winner of the competition. Photo: Damien Eagers

Ms Edghill, who is studying primary education at St Patrick's College in Drumcondra, is an avid racegoer but had never won a style competition before.

"I've always worn a dress, I've never worn trousers," she said.

Irish rugby coach Joe Schmidt arrived for the second year in a row to enjoy a day out at the Kildare race track.

"I came probably 22 years ago and then last year I came again," he said. "It's a nice place. I'm just here for today so there won't be time enough to lose too much hopefully."

A total of 19,366 people attended day two of the festival, up from 18,181 last year.

Audrey Grace, from Naas. Photo: Damien Eagers
Audrey Grace, from Naas. Photo: Damien Eagers
Ireland rugby coach Joe Schmidt at the races. Photo: Damien Eagers
Ireland rugby coach Joe Schmidt at the races. Photo: Damien Eagers

Irish Independent

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