Sunday, 5 May 2019

We have just returned from an amazing trip to Punchestown festival in Ireland - I can't begin to tell you what a fabulous time we had - Wonderful country, warm welcoming people and the very best of racing. What more could you want?

Beautiful views from our hotel room

Deer wandering around the hotel grounds
On Tuesday the highlight of the day was to see Ruby Walsh win the gold cup with Kemboy. He gave him a magical ride and then shocked the whole crowd when in an interview afterwards he announced his retirement with the words "That's it now - I'm finished - You won't see me on another horse" There was a stunned silence from the crowd and then everyone started to clap and it all got rather emotional. The jockeys all came out of the weighing room to give him a salute of honour, after he had a freezing cold bucket of water thrown over him by Davy Russell. Ruby has given us 24 years of pleasure watching his genius on horseback and it felt like the end of an era.

The retirement of  Ruby after winning the gold cup - Fantastic that he could retire on his own terms after so many injuries


Unowhatimeanharry the surprise winner of the Stayers hurdle


Buveur D'air - A fabulous return to form in a thrilling race winning the Champion hurdle.

On Thursday we visited the Irish National stud to see the stallions - and then on Saturday we went to Coolmore. Some seriously nice stallions and we are very tempted to take a couple of mares out to 'visit' them. They are more commercial than English stallions and although it is a bit of a road trip, it could be well worth it.  We particularly liked Elusive Pimpernel at the Irish Stud and Yates, Getaway and A Walk in the Park at Coolmore
We were sad to leave on Saturday afternoon as we had such a good time but good to get back to all our furry friends back in the UK. Thankfully there were no babies in our absence and although Tatty looks very imminent the mares look as though they have about a week to go.