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Style wins the day as ladies add touch of glamour to races


ON PARADE: Ciara Keegan

ON PARADE: Ciara Keegan

ON PARADE: Ciara Keegan

FOOTBALL bosses, business tycoons and some head-turning WAGS – it was business as usual on day two of the Punchestown racing festival.

Grey skies and a strong wind chill did not deter some fashionable ladies who sported quirky head pieces and bare legs, but the festival was hit with a poor turn-out as 15,748 arrived on a cloudy Wednesday, nearly 1,000 down on last year.

It was a good day for champion jockey Barry Geraghty who claimed victory in the day's Grade 1 race and his glamorous wife Paula Geraghty was in winning form, turning out in a black and white check outfit.

However, it was not all plain sailing for the glamorous mum of two.

"I actually spilled make-up all over my dress before I left so I had to pull something out of the wardrobe last minute," Paula told the Herald.

The Meath based couple are eagerly awaiting this Saturday where they will mark the end of the racing season with a no-holds-barred bash on Punchestown racecourse.

The annual event is the only opportunity for the country's jockeys to really let their hair down and Paula already has her outfit picked out for the occasion. Former Liverpool boss Roy Evans (below with ex-Everton boss Howard Kendall) was remaining optimistic about his old club's chances of winning this year's Premier League as he flew over from the UK especially for the Kildare racing festival.

"I was asked over and I don't get here very often so I am glad I came," he said.

"But it's not just a boys day, I'm here with my wife and 12 pals," he added.

Businessman Charlie Chawke said he is a long time off retirement as he turned out to support his former Arkle trophy winning horse, Forpadydeplasterer - which is partly owned by the publican.

"He is retired but they brought him down to show him off here," explained Chawke.

Asked if he would be betting big on the horses, Chawke added: "There are no big bets any more, the government and the banks have taken all our money."

Power couple Jackie Lavin and Bill Cullen (below) were putting their banking woes behind then when they turned up.

The sunshine which had graced Tuesday's festival opener was nowhere to be seen.

However, there was still plenty of banter and betting.