Young Seán enhances family tradition
The O'Keeffe family from Harveystown, Taghmon, has been synonymous with breeding, training and racing horses for several generations.
A new entry to the O'Keeffe pedigree was added at the recent point-to-point meeting in Thomastown, Co. Kilkenny, when 17-years-old Seán rode his first-ever winner at just his third attempt, writes Pegasus.
Seán rode Tinacurra, an eight-year-old bay gelding out of Fruits of Love, with great assurance to claim a four-length victory. He overcame a mistake at the second last to challenge the leader at the last fence and then cleared away to win by four lengths.
Tincurra was bred, owned and trained by Seán's father, Jim, and he had been waiting a while for his turn to come. Jim is son of the late James O'Keeffe of Harveystown who died almost exactly three years ago, and he surely must have been smiling down on his grandson, Seán, on his big day.
Horses have always been in the family and probably the biggest claim to fame by the late James Senior was that he bred Finian's Rainbow out of his mare, Trinity Gale; the bay gelding was foaled on May 29, 2003, and went on to achieve remarkable success, winning the Queen Mother Champion Chase at Cheltenham and the Melling Chase at Aintree
Young Seán has been riding horses almost since he could walk and he has spent holiday time at the Liz Doyle and Jim Bolger stables learning the game.
He was delighted to get his maiden win as he will probably have to concentrate on other things next year when he will be doing his Leaving Cert., but no doubt we have not heard the last of him as he continues the proud O'Keeffe of Harveystown family tradition.