Kilbeggan Racecourse is set to host its Summer Saturday Festival on August 11 starting at 5.20pm - and the occasion is all about people enjoying themselves.
The latest meeting comes hot on the heels of Midlands National Race Meeting on July 20 which was an outstanding success with the President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins in attendance in the midst of the big race and the 'Best Dressed Lady' competition. It was a great occasion for all the people who attended and met the President, as he strolled among the people enjoying the racing and chatting with people like young jockey Jack Kennedy.
Paddy Dunican, Kilbeggan Races Manager, stated that everybody involved with the course was "deeply honoured and very privileged" to have President of Ireland and his wife Sabina at the last meeting. "It was the first time for the President of Ireland to attend Kilbeggan Races and we experienced a big increase in attendance on the evening," said Paddy.
Kilbeggan town had the opportunity to become part of Offaly in 1898 but declined, instead remaining part of Westmeath. However, Offaly racegoers are great neighbours and supporters of Kilbeggan Races. The Devitts, Doheny, & Nesbitt Maiden Hurdle on August 11 of €11,500 is generously sponsored by Tom & Paul Mangan of the Mangan Group Dublin. Tom Mangan is originally from Rhode.
The Pig ‘N’ Whistle Pubs & Restaurants Hurdle is sponsored by John Mahon of New York, who is originally from Longford, but living in the US. The “Locky Murphy Toyota Sandyford Best Dressed Lady Competition” is being supported by a new sponsor Locky Murphy of Toyota, Sandyford. There is a fabulous prize worth over €5,000 including a Brand New Toyota Hybrid CHR for 1 year + €500 petrol voucher & free road tax. Toyota Sandyford is one of the biggest Toyota dealerships in Ireland and, coincidentally, Locky is also originally from Rhode. The Joe Cooney Cup is being sponsored by the Bank House Family and this cup dates back 60 years this year.
Brent Pope is judging the Best Dressed Lady Competition and he can only be described as an adopted Irishman because of his popularity in this country. This remarkable man played rugby for Otago and New Zealand and coached it in Ireland. He has been a TV analyst, journalist, after dinner speaker, charity supporter, author of children books, a biography and a book on mental health (which he has spoken about in public); founder of Outsider Art Gallery in Dublin, and owner of POPE shirts and shoes. The 6ft 4 inch giant will be a welcome addition to this great occasion.
Admission for adults to the event is €15 - OAPs & students €12, children under 16 free (also free entertainment for kids). There are special discounts for staff, customers and friends for a group of 10 or more, special discounted admission of €12 per person. There is also the 'Summer Party Pack' which includes admission ticket, €5 drink voucher, €5 food voucher and free race card at €22 per person. This is the big holiday meeting of the year with people travelling from home and abroad to enjoy the holiday atmosphere. Come along next Saturday, August 11 to experience it and remember the first race is at 5.20pm.