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Michael Chester

President Higgins thanks Ruby Walsh for 'outstanding contributions' to Ireland's reputation

The president wrote to Walsh to wish him a successful retirement.

PRESIDENT MICHAEL D Higgins has congratulated Ruby Walsh on a “remarkable and brilliant” career after the jockey announced his retirement this evening.

There was emotional scenes at Punchestown Racecourse as Walsh revealed that he is retiring from racing after he rode the Willie Mullins-trained Kemboy to victory at the Punchestown Gold cup.

President Higgins released a statement saying he has written to Walsh to congratulate the 39-year-old on his career and to thank him for his “outstanding contributions” to racing and to Ireland’s reputation abroad.

“Since he first came to prominence through his win in the Grand National 19 years ago, Ruby has ridden more horses to victory than any rider in modern history and his track record, a veritable testament to Ruby’s talent, skill and determination, will take some time to beat,” he said.

May I also use this opportunity to acknowledge the contribution of Ruby’s family, both in their role as supporters of Ruby’s and in their own right, through their outstanding contributions to horse racing.

“As Ruby commences a new chapter in his life, I would like to thank him for representing Ireland so well and wish him every success in your future endeavours,” the president added.

Walsh had more than 2,500 winners in his glittering 24 year career. He was the Irish champion jockey 12 separate times and has more successes at the Cheltenham Festival than any other rider in history. 

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