TOP jockey Katie Walsh is set to marry her long-time boyfriend Ross O’Sullivan on Friday.
The Kildare woman will be walked down the aisle by her father, legendary trainer Ted Walsh.
“I’m really looking forward to it. I can’t wait,” she told The Herald.
The wedding will be in her local church in Kill, Co Kildare, and will be followed by a reception at the family home where she grew up surrounded by horses.
But the honeymoon will be short and sweet as Katie intends to be back in the saddle in time for the Galway Races Summer Festival which starts on July 29.
Katie and Ross, a former jockey turned horse trainer, have been together for years and they will continue to live in Kilcullen in |Co Kildare.
The wedding will be mainly a family affair, she said. Her famous brother Ruby and her sister-in-law Nina Carberry will be among the jockeys present.
Katie (28), one of the top amateurs, has more than 100 wins to her credit, including two wins at Cheltenham in 2010 on Poker de Sivola and Thousands Stars.
She was the only woman ever to finish in the top three places at the Aintree Grand National in its 177 history when she came third on Seabass last year.
And she was the only jockey this year – male or female – to make it into the SportsPro world list of the 50 Most Marketable Athletes.
Katie and sister-in-law Nina have just launched the five star g Hotel’s social programme for the Galway Races Summer Festival.
Each year hundreds of glamorous race-goers congregate at the g Hotel after ‘Ladies Day’ – this year taking place on Thursday, August 1, for the chance to win the coveted prize of a bespoke Philip Treacy creation in their Best Hat Competition.
Philip also designed the award-winning five star hotel. The world-renowned milliner describes the head-turning prize as a “petal in Sinamay with a rose and feather spray explosion” in a vibrant shade of lime green with black feathering dispersed throughout.
The striking shade was selected in celebration of 2013 being the year of ‘The Gathering Ireland’ making it a perfect fit for the Galway native who has built a reputation globally for his designs.
Katie and Nina will stay at the hotel all week and on Thursday and Friday, August 1 and 2, they will host a Breakfast Tipster morning from 10am, discussing the days’ racecards and sharing their experiences of the Galway Races.
Nina, currently out with an injury, is due back in the saddle just before the festival.