Tipperary trainer Joseph O'Brien in line for Horse Racing Ireland Award

Eamonn Wynne

Reporter:

Eamonn Wynne

Email:

ewynne@nationalist.ie

Joseph O'Brien

Joseph O'Brien, seen here with the Melbourne Cup, has been nominated in the Outstanding Achievement category of the Horse Racing Ireland awards.

Hot on the heels of his historic victory in the Melbourne Cup, trainer Joseph O’Brien has been nominated in the Outstanding Achievement category of Horse Racing Ireland’s annual awards. 

Just like his riding career, O’Brien’s short training career  – he only took out a licence in June of last year - has been nothing short of meteoric.

His truly remarkable achievement to saddle Rekindling to win one of the world’s most famous races, the Melbourne Cup, is one of the stories of the year.

The youngest trainer at the age of 24 to win the race, Rekindling was the first three-year-old to score since 1941. 

Other big-race successes for Joseph - who gew up in Ballydoyle near Rosegreen in West Tipperary - in a memorable first full calendar year with a licence came courtesy of Tigris River in the Guinness Galway Hurdle.

Rekindling also won the Ballysax Stakes at Leopardstown and the Curragh Cup.

Joseph O’Brien, whose yard is based at Owning Hill near Piltown, in Co. Kilkenny, also has the distinction of saddling over 100 winners (both Flat and National Hunt combined) since January 1.

Other notable wins came with Landofhopeandglory in the Kilbegnet Novice Chase, Early Doors in the Fishery Lane Hurdle and Detailed in the Martin Molony Stakes.

In a great year for the O’Brien family, his father Aidan recently broke the world record for the number of Group and Grade One winners trained on the Flat in a calendar year. 

The other nominees in the Outstanding Achievement category are jockeys Rachael Blackmore (from Killenaule), Lisa O’Neill, Padraig Beggy and Jack Kennedy and trainer Pat Kelly.

The winner will be announced at the Horse Racing Ireland Awards on Tuesday, December 5th at Leopardstown Racecourse.

Horse Racing Ireland awards are presented in six other categories - Horse of the Year, National Hunt Racing, Flat Racing, Point-to-Point Racing, Contribution to the Industry and Racecourse of the Year.