Crowds flock to Down Royal Summer Festival of Racing

Shane Foley and Dadoozdart win the Magners Ulster Derby
Shane Foley and Dadoozdart win the Magners Ulster Derby

Over 10,000 racegoers attended what is regarded as the highlight of the year for racing aficionados, socialites and fashionistas as Down Royal Racecourse hosted its prestigious Summer Festival of Racing.

Featuring Northern Ireland’s biggest and richest flat race of the season, the Magners Ulster Derby saw Dadoozdart power home to win the prize pot of €100,000.

Best Dressed Lady - Suzanne Gallgher from Sligo

Best Dressed Lady - Suzanne Gallgher from Sligo

The three-year old, owned by Mrs M Cahill and trained by Noel Meade, was ridden on the day by Shane Foley.

This was the ninth year of Magners sponsorship of what has become one of Ulster’s most popular and stylish race meetings.

Jeff Tosh, commercial director at Tennent’s NI, said: “We are delighted to once again sponsor the Ulster Derby at Down Royal. Magners Irish Cider is synonymous with the summer season and there is no better fit than that of the Down Royal Summer Festival of Racing. We welcome the event following our sponsorship of the Cheltenham Gold Cup and The Festival presented by Magners which is the first of a longer term association.

“This year at Down Royal, we not only celebrated with our infamous Magners Original but welcomed growing innovations to the portfolio in Magners Dark Fruit and Magners Rosé to embrace the summer season ahead.”

Racing fans and Ireland’s style elite showed off their fashion credentials at Down Royal Summer Festival of Racing with Suzanne Gallagher from Sligo taking the Best Dressed Lady title.

The Best Dressed Competition, in association with Jack Murphy Jewellers, was judged by Irish lifestyle influencer and VIP Style Awards Most Stylish Influencer, Louise Cooney, Cool FM Breakfast Show Presenter and Fashion Stylist, Rebecca McKinney and Catrina McGleenon from Franklins Retail.

Suzanne took home an amazing prize package worth £3,500 including spectacular jewellery from Jack Murphy Jewellers to the value of £3,000, as well as a case of Tattinger champagne and a host of other goodies.

Claire Rutherford, sales and marketing director at Down Royal Racecourse, said: “The Summer Festival is one of the highlights of our racing calendar and was a superb day out for all. The spectacle of Ladies Day provides an extra element of colour to an already prestigious day of horse racing.”