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NEXT GEN: Conor Costello

NEXT GEN: Conor Costello

Conor Costello is the latest rider to feature in our Next Generation section.

17-year-old Conor had a memorable day at Dromahane on Sunday when he steered his father’s Final Gift to victory in the open.

This was Conor’s second point-to-point ride having finished third at Stradbally the previous Sunday.

Name: Conor Costello
Age: 17
Area: Fenloe, Co. Clare

How did you become involved in racing?

My family have always had a big involvement with horses and have produced some very good horses over the years such as Best Mate, Florida Pearl, Back In Focus and most recently Next Destination.

I started riding from a young age and show jumped ponies with my brothers around the country before I started to ride out for my dad a few years ago.

My dad rode as an amateur as well as my two uncles Tom and Dermot who were both champion point-to-point riders twice during their careers.

I got my bumper licence last November and I received my point-to-point licence two weeks ago so I have had a great start.

I am currently in fifth year at St Caimins in Shannon and I ride out for my dad at the weekends.

What's your favourite course?

Quakerstown would be my favourite point-to-point course. It is my local track and we have had some great success there over the years. I have always looked forward to it coming around every Easter Sunday. Hopefully I will get a winner there some day.

Cheltenham is definitely my favourite race track. My uncle Tom won the 4m chase there in 1988 aboard Over The Road.

What was the best day of your racing life?

Sunday was unbelievable. It meant a lot to all of the family as Final Gift was the last horse owned by my late grandfather Tom and he carries the colours of my grandmother Josephine who was also here to see it.

Do you do any sport outside of racing?

I still do some show jumping during the summer and will hopefully get to do as much as I can this season.

Do you own any horses of your own?

I have a small share in a few younger horses. My dad would normally buy about 10-12 foals every year so there is always young horses coming on at home.

Who’s your biggest influence?

Dad has always given me great advice for my riding. I have always looked up to Davy Russell as a rider on the track for the way he rides his races and also how he handles himself for how much he has achieved.

What your best racing memory?

I have great memories of going point-to-pointing with Final Gift. He is a family favourite as we bought him as a foal. That was his ninth success for us on Sunday which includes two wins on the track.

If you could ride a horse at Punchestown this week, who would you like to be on?

It would have to be Next Destination. He won his four-year-old maiden for us at Quakerstown two years ago and runs in the Grade one novice hurdle on Wednesday. I was lucky enough to get to school him and ride him out when we had him at home.

What are your plans for the future?

I would love to get a few spins in bumpers over the summer if I could. I will hopefully be able to combine my leaving cert studies next season with riding in point-to-points.

To read about some of our other featured riders this season click on the link below.


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