Diamond Prize adds Extra Sparkle to Killarney Races

Celebrating Killarney’s distinguished racing history at Reidy’s on Main Street. Staff from Killarney Race Course dressed in vintage gear include:  Megan Daly, Peg O’Connor and Philip O’Brien with Fia from Killarney Riding Stables. Photograph:Valerie O’Sullivan.

Fashion stylists and footballers, Roses and broadcasters will descend on Killarney Racecourse this week for a four-day festival of high quality racing and entertainment.

The occasion celebrates Killarney’s distinguished racing history which dates back to 1822, while the present, most scenic race course in Ireland, set against the backdrop of Killarney National Park, was opened in 1936.

Vintage Attire and Fia

To mark the occasion Killarney Racecourse staff members Philip O’Brien, Megan Daly and Peg O’Connor donned vintage attire and brought traffic to a standstill in Killarney town centre with a high-profile photo-shoot with an obliging horse named Fia.

The racing will get underway on this Wednesday, August 22, and it will conclude on Saturday when TV3 fashion guru and stylist Mandy Maher, of the Catwalk Model Agency, will link up with dapper Radio Kerry broadcaster Brendan Fuller to judge the best dressed lady and best dressed gent competitions.

Best Dressed Lady

The prize for the best dressed lady is a spectacular €2,000 diamond ring set in an exquisite gold band and the best dressed gent will receive formal and casual attire worth €1,000.

Friday evening’s meeting will see many of the Kerry GAA stars joining the punters for a special Kerry GAA benefit night. It’s an occasion not to be missed and the message to Kingdom fans is to keep their eyes open and they’ll never know who they’ll bump into.

The newly crowned Rose of Tralee will make her first public appearance at the races on Wednesday, arriving by helicopter in a style fit for a Rose. She will happily mingle with punters at a meet and greet session at the track.

First of the White Flags

Racing on Wednesday will commence at 2.00pm, on Thursday it’s 4.25pm, on Friday the first of the white flags will be raised at 4.45pm and on Saturday it’s a 1.25pm start.

The big race on an all-flat card on Wednesday is the Racing Post Vincent O’Brien Ruby Stakes, a listed race valued at €50,000, which will be run at 3.40pm.

Thursday’s racing highlight will be the KWD Kingdom Gold Cup Handicap, also valued at €50,000, which will get underway at 5.30pm.

Big one on Friday

The big one on Friday is the €50,000 Grade B At The Races Handicap Hurdle, which will be the sixth race on the card at 7.30pm.

Saturday’s feature race will be the €50,000 MSL Cork Mercedes Benz Handicap Steeplechase, Grade B, which will get under starter’s orders at 4.20pm.

Admission on Wednesday and Thursday is €15, on Friday and Saturday it will be €20 and students and OAPs will be admitted from €12 with valid ID. Children under 12 years of age will be admitted free of charge but they must be accompanied by an adult.

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