Leopardstown Racecourse and Dornan Engineering have today announced a three year partnership with leading Engineering Firm Dornan Engineering Limited, who will sponsor one of feature races of the Leopardstown Christmas Festival.
The Grade 1, three-mile Hurdle, which will take place on Tuesday, December 28th as part of the Leopardstown Christmas Festival will from today be known as The Dornan Engineering Christmas Hurdle.
A relatively new race to the traditional four-day Christmas Festival, originating in 1996; the Grade 1 Dornan Engineering Christmas Hurdle has attracted popular horses such as Limestone Lad, Bannow Boy, Vroum Vroum Mag and most recently three-time winner, Apples Jade, who have their names on the winners role of honour in this feature staying hurdle.
The 2020 renewal was won by the Gavin Cromwell-trained Flooring Porter. The Yeats gelding having progressed throughout his winter campaign from handicap company to Grade 1 level.
Flooring Porter then went on to Cheltenham where again his front running tactics proved too strong for the competition as he defeated formers Stayers Hurdle winner Paisley Park and old rival Sire Du Belrias by three and a half lengths, also providing jockey Danny Mullins with his first winner at the Festival. Flooring Porter ended his season as the Timeform rated leading staying hurdler, rated only 1lb below star mare Honeysuckle.
Tim Husbands MBE, CEO at Leopardstown Racecourse, said: “We are delighted to welcome Dornan Engineering as a partner at Leopardstown, it is through the support of our sponsors that the Leopardstown Christmas Festival continues to be such a prominent feature of the National Hunt Season.
"The Dornan Engineering Christmas Hurdle has always proved to be a race of the highest quality and we are very grateful for Dornan Engineering’s generous support, and we look forward to making this a very successful partnership.”
Robert Acheson of Dornan Engineering, added: “Dornan is proud to sponsor this year’s renewal of the Christmas Hurdle in Leopardstown on the 28th of December. The race always provides key indicators towards the spring festivals, with last year's winner, Flooring Porter, going on to win the Stayers Hurdle in Cheltenham. We are very much looking forward to a fantastic race and would like to thank Leopardstown for providing us with the opportunity to be involved with such a historic festival.”