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Cooper starts new role in the Kingdom

Preparations are well underway at Killarney Racecourse for their busy racing season which is set to kick off from May 14. With multiple festivals to choose from, between May and October, there is something for everyone, including tickets and dining options at Ireland’s most scenic racecourse.

Recently retired jockey Bryan Cooper has made many media headlines of late. This is following his shock announcement, that he was hanging up his boots at just 30 years of age.

It may have come as a great shock to many,  but the renowned young Kerryman is showing the same fortitude and resilience in the new and evolving chapter in his life as he did when race riding.

In recognition of his successful riding career and the courage, honesty and grace he has shown throughout his career, Killarney Racecourse is delighted to announce Bryan Cooper as the Official Ambassador for the 2023 season.

Obvious fit

The chairman of Killarney Racecourse, Billy O’Sullivan spoke about the decision last week. He said; “for Killarney Races this was an obvious fit. We are only too delighted to show our support of Bryan Cooper as the next chapter in his career unfolds and we are very much looking forward to working with him in the build-up to and during our four-festival season here at Killarney Races.

“Bryan is a fantastic young man who has shown great courage in choosing to speak out the way he has done about his reasons for retiring and he did so with such grace. It is most honourable and we are thrilled to have him on board.”

Bryan Cooper, the new ambassador for Killarney Races added, “The support I have received since I announced my retirement has been incredible. The swift approach by my local track to be their official ambassador for the season was most welcomed and a very special honour indeed.

“I love horse-racing, I always have loved it and I always will, and whatever the next chapter in my career holds this is a cracking start for which I am grateful. I can’t wait to be there on the opening day of the season on May 14th!”


MayFest takes place from Sunday, 14th to Tuesday 16th inclusive, offering two jump cards followed by an all-flat fixture. A popular fixture with locals, this offers a great chance to let your hair down before the tourist season really kicks off in town.

JulyFest is a real highlight on the racing and social calendar that takes place from Monday 17th to Friday 21st inclusive with a mix of national hunt and flat meetings across the 5-day fixture. There is plenty of competition off the track also, as Friday 21st will host the Lee Strand Best Dressed Competition.

AugustFest takes place from Thursday 24th to Saturday 26th inclusive. A wonderful festival to mark the last hurrah of the busy Summer season in the Kingdom.

OctoberFest is a relatively new addition to the calendar at Killarney Races and offers patrons a more relaxed weekend festival experience on Saturday 30th of September and Sunday 1st of October.

The Association of Irish Racecourses would like to wish the new Chairman Billy O’Sullivan, Philip O’Brien, Pam Treacy and all the team at Killarney Races the absolute best for their season ahead. For tickets and more information check out their social media channels and their website

By Leo Powell

Irish Field

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