One of the most prestigious and glamorous race days in Ireland is set to return this Sunday as the Irish Gold Cup takes place at Leopardstown.
Will it be a first win for leading National Hunt trainer Gordon Elliott or will it be a hat-trick for trainer John Kiely and Carlingford Lough?’
The only race meeting in Ireland to feature four Grade 1’s on a single day, the race has provided us with some memorable moments down the years.
Here’s some of our favourites, and here’s to many more this weekend!
1. Mark Dwyer wins the inaugural Irish Gold Cup – 1987
The Ashbourne man claimed Gold Cup victory on Forgive ‘n’ Forget. The triumph on home soil came just two years after winning the Cheltenham version on the same Jimmy FitzGerald-trained horse.
2. Dwyer wins a record fourth Gold Cup – 1995
Dwyer becomes the most successful jockey in Irish Gold Cup history by riding Jodami to victory for the third year running. His record has yet to be matched, 22 years later.
3. Willie Mullins’ first victory – 1999
The legendary trainer secured his first Gold Cup victory when Richard Dunwoody rode seven-year-old Florida Pearl home.
4. It’s four Gold Cups for Florida Pearl – 2004
Pearl won again in 2000, 2001 and 2004 making him the Irish Gold Cup’s most successful horse, as well as its oldest winner at 12 years of age.
This was the second time the horse he won with RIchard Johnson in the saddle.
5. Willie Mullins makes it nine wins – 2013
Mullins continued to blow all else out of the water as Davy Russell rode Sir Des Champs to victory, securing the trainer’s ninth Gold Cup.
6. AP McCoy secures his one and only Irish Gold Cup – 2015
The racing icon added the Irish Gold Cup to his prestigious list of honours on Carlingford Lough.
7. Carlingford Lough retains the Gold Cup for John Kiely – 2016
The 10-year-old strode home for the second year running, this time ridden by Mark Walsh.