There are more celebrations this week in the Hanlon yard with Shark Hanlon picking up top honours at the Horse Racing Ireland awards.
Hanlon scored a notable hat-trick of wins with his new stable star Hewick, the TJ McDonald-owned seven-year-old had Jordan Gainford in the saddle when landing the historic bet365 Gold Cup Handicap Chase at Sandown in April, adding the Tote Galway Plate in July and rounding off 2022 with a famous win in the American Grand National Hurdle Stakes at Far Hills in October.
The Kenny Alexander-owned Honeysuckle was crowned Horse of the Year for the second consecutive year. She extended her winning run to 16 races as she remained unbeaten for a fourth season, adding the Hatton’s Grace Hurdle for a third time, winning both the Irish Champion Hurdle and the Champion Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival for a second time before thrilling a record crowd of over 40,000 on the penultimate day of the Punchestown festival with a repeat success in the Champion Hurdle at Punchestown.
Honeysuckle’s unbeaten run was finally halted on Sunday after a bumper day of racing at Fairyhouse with Teahupoo taking the Bar On Racing Hatton’s Grace Hurdle, missing out on the chance of becoming the first four-time winner of a Grade 1 hurdle.
19-time champion National Hunt Owner JP McManus was honoured with the Contribution to the Industry Award.
McManus has been associated with many of the top jumps’ horses for over 40 years, enjoying well in excess of 4,000 winners, a list that includes Mister Donavan, Jack Of Trumps and Deep Gale, big early winners in the famous green and gold hoops. The legendary Istabraq was a three-time winner of the Champion Hurdle, a race JP McManus also won on five other occasions, while the Cheltenham Gold Cup went his way with Synchronised and there was Aintree Grand National glory with Don’t Push It and Minella Times.
Kevin Manning brought the curtain down on a truly terrific career that spanned 40 years with a farewell winner for his great ally Jim Bolger at Galway in October and he wins the Irish Racing Hero Award. Kevin was champion apprentice in 1984 and again in 1987 and his career would yield 36 Group 1 winners that included Epsom Derby success on New Approach in 2008. Kevin also won the Irish Derby on Trading Leather and enjoyed multiple Classic success along with a famous win in the 2004 Hong Kong Cup on Alexander Goldrun.
Horse Racing Ireland Awards Winners 2022
- Contribution to the Industry Award: JP McManus
- Irish Racing Hero Award: Kevin Manning
- Horse of the Year: Honeysuckle
- Emerging Talent: Sam Ewing
- National Hunt Award: Henry de Bromhead
- National Hunt Achievement Award: John ‘Shark’ Hanlon
- Point-To-Point Award: Liz Lalor
- Flat Award: Billy Lee
- Flat Achievement Award: Dylan Browne McMonagle
- Ride of the Year: Wayne Lordan
Horse Racing Ireland Chairman, Nicky Hartery, commented, “We are delighted to be hosting our annual awards in person for the first time in three years. While congratulating all our winners, a special mention goes to JP McManus who has given so much to the racing game and to the Kevin Manning who recently retired after a terrific 40-year career. Jack de Bromhead was among those who were remembered this evening. He is very much in our thoughts and I send my very best wishes to his sisters Mia and Georgia, to his parents Heather and Henry, and to his extended family and friends.”