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- Awards for Willie Mullins and son
- Sixth Award for Nina Carberry
- Ruby Walsh Takes Top Jockey Award for Sixth Time
- Distinguished Services Award for Conor O’Dwyer

Another memorable year for Irish National Hunt Racing was brought to a close with the presentation of the annual Irish National Hunt Awards which were presented in Adare, Co Limerick, last night, Monday 5 May, 2008.  The awards which are organised by the Irish National Hunt Steeplechase Committee were presented at a function attended by over 200 guests from the world of Irish National Hunt.  In all 13 awards were presented.

Among the winners were trainer Willie Mullins and his son Patrick.  Willie picked up three awards for his training exploits during the year while Patrick won the award for the leading Qualified Rider.  Patrick, who is still at school in Clongowes Wood College, had a great season including a win at The Cheltenham Festival on Cousin Vinny which was trained by his father.

Nina Carberry, who also won at Cheltenham, picked up the Leading Lady Rider’s award for the second year in succession.  It was her third year in a row to win an award and her fifth award in all.  In 2005/06 and 2006/07 she was both Leading Amateur and Leading Lady Rider.

Ruby Walsh, picked up his sixth Leading Rider award in the past ten years and his fourth in a row.  He had a fantastic year riding 200 winners in Ireland and the UK.  His three winners at the Cheltenham Festival also ensured that he was leading rider at the Festival for the third time in the last five years.   At the weekend he also rode his 1000th winner in Ireland to date.

The Distinguished Services Awards went to jockey Conor O’Dwyer who during the season announced his decision to retire as a jockey to pursue a career in training.  During a long and distinguished career O’Dwyer won most of National Hunt’s major prizes including two Gold Cups (“Imperial Call” and “War of Attrition”) and two Champion Hurdles (both on “Hardy Eustace”) at Cheltenham.

The award for ‘Contribution to the Industry’ went to Sean Barry of the Turf Club. 
Sean who is the National Hunt Registrar has been with the Turf Club over 40 years.

Speaking at the Awards dinner Mr John Moloney, Senior Steward of the Irish National Hunt Steeplechase Committee paid tribute to the exploits of Irish jockeys during the 2007/2008 National Hunt season.

He said that the strength in depth of the talent in Ireland had been demonstrated conclusively at this year’s Aintree Grand National when 14 of the 15 finishers had all been ridden by Irish jockeys.  In relation to the Grand National he particularly complimented Timmy Murphy who had ridden “Comply or Die” to victory.

He noted that the Irish National Hunt Steeplechase Committee would be joining forces with the British Horseracing Board on 12 May to present another set of awards – ‘The Anglo Irish Jump Racing Awards 2008” – which will feature an award to the ‘Horse of the Year’.

These awards, which are based on the official Anglo Irish classifications are open to horses trained in Britain and Ireland, or, if trained elsewhere, achieve the highest category racing on a British or Irish race track.

He concluded his remarks by noting the continuing work being undertaken by the stewards of the Irish National Hunt Steeplechase Committee in raising safety standards throughout the sport in Ireland.  He also thanked the Government for their continuing support which he said had also contributed to the new golden era for the sport.  

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