Nicholas Roche beaten into second place by champion jockey

Charity race held in aid of Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital in Crumlin

Professional cyclist Nicholas Roche and champion jockey Pat Smullen went head to head in a race this evening as part of a unique “beast versus bike” charity event at Leopardstown Racecourse. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/©INPHO

Professional cyclist Nicholas Roche and champion jockey Pat Smullen went head to head in a race this evening as part of a unique “beast versus bike” charity event at Leopardstown Racecourse. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/©INPHO

Thu, Aug 14, 2014, 21:49

Professional cyclist Nicholas Roche and champion jockey Pat Smullen went head to head in a race last night as part of a unique “beast versus bike” charity event at Leopardstown Racecourse.

The event was in aid of the Children’s Medical & Research Foundation at Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital in Crumlin. The race was run over 400 metres on the final two furlongs of the Leopardstown racetrack.

Mr Smullen steered the Dermot Weld trained Moonbi Creek to victory against Mr Roche in a 25.2 second race in which Mr Roche reached a top speed of approximately 58 kilometres per hour.

Mr Smullen took the race easily however with an eight length win over Mr Roche, who was in Dublin following his involvement in the Tour de France last month.

Speaking after the race last night, Mr Roche said: “It was a great night for a great cause. I would like to thank everybody who showed up to support the event. Unfortunately I couldn’t beat Pat and Dermot, but I gave it 100 per cent.”

Mr Smullen said it was “an honour” to take part in the race for “such a worthy cause”.

“I think Nicolas set himself a tough task taking on a thoroughbred horse over two furlongs,” he said. “All credit goes to him. What a wonderful athlete and gentleman. Hopefully we get to race each other again and I am looking forward to the rematch.”