Wednesday 7 December 2016

Female jockeys swap silks for stilettos for fashion show at Punchestown launch

Published 19/04/2016 | 07:16

(L to R) Kate Harrington, Rachel Blackmore and Nina Carberry at the launch of the Punchestown Festival. Picture: Brian McEvoy
(L to R) Kate Harrington, Rachel Blackmore and Nina Carberry at the launch of the Punchestown Festival. Picture: Brian McEvoy
Jockey Nina Carberry at the launch of the Punchestown Festival. Picture: Brian McEvoy
(L to R) Jockeys Kate Harrington, Barry Fogarty, Rachel Blackmore, Brian Cooper, Nina Carberry and Patrick Mullins at the launch of the Punchestown Festival. Picture: Brian McEvoy
Jockey Kate Harrington at the launch of the Punchestown Festival. Picture: Brian McEvoy
(L to R) Kate Harrington, Rachel Blackmore and Nina Carberry at the launch of the Punchestown Festival. Picture: Brian McEvoy

Festival fever was in the air last night for the glamour-filled launch of the Punchestown races. 

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A glitzy event at Lemongrass restaurant in Naas saw some of Ireland’s top female jockeys swapping their silks for stilettos as they took to the catwalk in some of the finest race-day fashion.

Details of the biggest racing jump festival in the country were also unveiled at the fashion show, which featured lots of familiar faces from the world of racing.

Jockeys Rachel Blackmore, Kate Harrington and Nina Carberry showed off the latest looks from Aria boutique.

(L to R) Kate Harrington, Rachel Blackmore and Nina Carberry at the launch of the Punchestown Festival. Picture: Brian McEvoy
(L to R) Kate Harrington, Rachel Blackmore and Nina Carberry at the launch of the Punchestown Festival. Picture: Brian McEvoy

Irish Grand National winner Nina said that she relished getting out of her racing gear and glamming up.

“I always enjoy it. It was a good success last year and I really enjoy getting dressed up for the night,” she said.

She scored a big winner aboard On the Fringe in the Foxhunter Chase at Cheltenham last month – and said she had big hopes again for Punchestown next week.

“I’m riding On the Fringe on the Friday and hopefully he’ll turn up again. I haven’t ridden him since Cheltenham, but Enda [Bolger] is happy with him,” she said.

Jockey Nina Carberry at the launch of the Punchestown Festival. Picture: Brian McEvoy
Jockey Nina Carberry at the launch of the Punchestown Festival. Picture: Brian McEvoy

Speaking about the importance of the Kildare festival, which starts on April 26 and is worth an estimated €62m to the local economy, she said it was “the last showcase of the season”.

“There’s lots of horses coming over from Aintree and Cheltenham that we get to see again, so there’s a nice bit of rivalry there,” she said.

Also out channelling their inner Zoolander was jockey Brian Cooper, who scored an amazing win at the

Cheltenham Gold Cup for owner Michael O’Leary.

(L to R) Jockeys Kate Harrington, Barry Fogarty, Rachel Blackmore, Brian Cooper, Nina Carberry and Patrick Mullins at the launch of the Punchestown Festival. Picture: Brian McEvoy
(L to R) Jockeys Kate Harrington, Barry Fogarty, Rachel Blackmore, Brian Cooper, Nina Carberry and Patrick Mullins at the launch of the Punchestown Festival. Picture: Brian McEvoy

He strutted his stuff

alongside fellow jockeys Patrick Mullins and Mikey Fogerty. Other attendees included former Apprentice star Bill Cullen and his partner Jackie Lavin.

Herald

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