It was a day to remember for rider Liam Galligan who partnered his first winner between the flags aboard the Gordon Elliott trained Hardline.
The gelding carried the colours of Elliott’s racing secretary Alex Hutter.
Name: Luke Galligan
From: Kells, Meath
Hardline - Castletown-Geoghegan
How did you get started with horses?
I have been riding horses since I was about four or five, my Mam and Dad and Uncle's would have always had horses and my Grandad, so I would have grown up around them.
My nanny always had racehorses so there was always an interest in racing.
I started off riding ponies, then got into hunting. I hunted with the Meath Hunt for many years, it was actually there I got chatting to Cossie McGivern who asked me did I have any interest in coming into Gordon’s.
I started in Gordon’s when I was about 15 and have been in and out of there ever since. After I finished school, I decided this is what I wanted to do and went full-time.
Cossie had been a great help to me and has really got me going.
How did you get to know Cossie McGivern?
My Mam and Dad would be very friendly with him and would have known him for years. When he asked me did I want to go into Gordon’s, my eyes just shined then and I jumped at the chance.
Did you always want to take out your Qualified Riders License?
I played plenty of football, hurling and rugby when I was younger and wanted to be really good at that and then I started with racehorses and really wanted to give it a shot and see how it goes.
Who are you currently working or riding out for?
I am working for Gordon full-time now, I went full-time about 18 months ago and I am loving it.
You must have been delighted to get your first winner on the board, when did you find out you were riding Hardline?
I only found out the morning before I was riding him and I was absolutely over the moon, so I was!
I had only ridden him a handful of times at home but I always knew he was a good horse and a nice ride.
It was a great day and it was really special to have my Mam and Dad there on the day, there was actually a good few of them there so it was brilliant.
Who is your biggest influence in racing?
The lads here in Gordon’s are brilliant, with the likes of Jack Kennedy, Shane McCann, Jamie Codd, Sam Ewing and Cossie all are great for advice.
They are always trying to help you and improve you and are great to tell you about a horse or what your doing wrong.
I have been very fortunate and I owe a big thanks to Gordon, Cossie, Jack, Jamie, Sam and all the lads in the yard for helping me out.
Have you any ambitions for next season?
Hopefully get a few more rides, try my best and see how we go from there.
Any up and coming jockey that you think we should be an eye out for?
I work with Carl Millar, he’s a good rider and one to keep an eye on.
Have you any interests outside of racing?
When I was growing up I played a lot of football, hurling and rugby. I made the North East Squad under 16’s rugby team and I also played for the under 16’s Meath football and hurling teams.
I still play hurling for the Meath under 20’s team and that is starting up again shortly. It is a great way to keep fit.
Any horses you are looking forward to see running this season?
Caldwell Potter is a horse I would be looking forward to see how he goes, I look after him at home.