The biggest event in the Irish racing calendar is fast approaching. Punchestown Festival returns to Punchestown Racecourse in County Kildare from 28th April to 2nd May this year, and we can’t wait for the fun to begin.
Here are 5 reasons to love Punchestown Festival:
1. Punchestown Festival is the place to be if you love horse racing, or even if you’re interested in finding out what it’s all about. Its importance on the Irish racing scene means anyone whose anyone in that world will be there, and you can see some of the best race horses in Ireland and from around the world on the track. The horses are ridden by some of the world’s best jockeys and trained by the top trainers, a speciality that Ireland is renowned for.
2. Punchestown Racecourse is located in a beautiful part of County Kildare. It may be less than an hour’s drive from Dublin, but it couldn’t feel much further from the capital city. The site is a vast 450 acres of countryside, 200 acres of which make up the impressive racecourse. It looks on to the beautiful Dublin and Wicklow mountains, and is surrounded by country villages and towns, which make for a lovely day out if you want to spend a weekend or even a whole week staying in the area.
3. Punchestown Festival is a great place for celebrity spotting. Stars such as Hollywood actor and dancer Fred Astaire have been in attendance in the past, and the biggest turnout at the festival came when the Prince and Princess of Wales visited in the 19th century. 150,000 people headed to the racecourse to greet the royals, including the prince who went on to become King Edward VII. Now you’re more likely to spot local Irish celebrities, such as model and TV star Georgia Salpa, who is judging the Gold Fever best dressed contest on Ladies Day this year.
4. If you’re lucky you might find your ticket for the Punchestown Festival is reimbursed, and you even have some money left over for a nice dinner, if you take part in horse racing betting at Punchestown Racecourse with William Hill. The betting site is offering great odds on many well-known and up-and-coming race horses this year.
If you can’t make it to the festival this year but still want to get involved in Punchestown Festival betting at the 2015 Irish National Hunt Festival, you can check the results of the races online or on the RTÉ Sport TV channel.
5. As the Punchestown Festival last five days, there is a range of events and activities to keep everyone interested and entertained. Some of the most famous races include the BoyleSports Champion Chase, the Punchestown Gold Cup and the Ladbrokes World Series Hurdle. The final day of the festival, Saturday 2nd May, is Family Day, which is a great day to bring along the kids and introduce them to the fun of horse racing. In addition to the racing, there is a fancy dress parade, art competition and a play area for children.