When I started riding horses professionally in Ireland, I remember thinking “this is pretty cool.” They had TV’s everywhere, big grandstands and people crammed in there like sardines. I came to America to ride and found it very different. The people still come, and come in the thousands, but not for the commercialization. No, they came because it’s a great day of sport and socialization for everyone of all ages. I still ride and ride at a high level and I realize that there are many opportunities to do things within our sport to make it better.
The magic part is, that being part of the Queen’s Cup Team lets me see that they do it as well as anyone – anywhere. As a jockey, I was brought on to give a different perspective to the Team, to bring some of my passion and find unique ways for their Sponsors and Patrons to see a side of the racing game very few people from the outside see.
Racing Around the World
I have ridden in 7 countries, from Qatar to France and from Australia to the USA. I have gained a wealth of experience. I have seen racing on its greatest days and I have been lucky enough to compete on most of them.
Today, the Queen’s Cup is not yet on the international page – yet – but one might want to watch this space. The Queen’s Cup is one of the most spectacular venues of any sporting day, right up there with some of the best venues I have ever ridden.
Although I will not ride here this year, I look forward to the opportunity of riding at the Brooklandwood racecourse again.