O'Leary's cheeky dig at neighbours

April 08, 2019

2019 Aintree Grand National Winner Tiger Roll (with groom Louise Magee), the first horse to win back-to-back Grand Nationals since the great Red Rum in 1974, owned by Michael O'Leary's (pictured) Gigginstown House Stud and trained by Gordon Elliott, at the homecoming parade in Summerhill, Co. Meath. ©INPHO/Oisin Keniry.

There has never been much love lost between Meath and Westmeath, and Michael O'Leary certainly stirred the pot with his comments after his brilliant steeplechaser Tiger Roll returned home yesterday after winning back-to-back Grand Nationals.

Tiger Roll was given a hero's welcome when he was paraded through Summerhill, Co. Meath, which is the home village of trainer Gordon Elliott. But in an interview with RTE, Ryanair boss and Mullingar native O'Leary got in one of his trademark cheeky digs, this time about the Royals' recent lack of sporting success.

"It's a great day for Gordon, for Davy Russell (jockey) and for Meath. To be fair, Meath don't win much anymore these days, Westmeath had to lend them our colours for the day," he said.

With the success of their footballers, hurlers, horses, boxers and even tennis players (Simon Carr, son of former Dublin manager and Mullingar resident Tommy, won his first ranking title in Tunisia yesterday) in recent weeks, Westmeath sport is certainly riding a crest of a wave and O'Leary, for one, is clearly revelling in it.

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