Aidan O’Brien talks to the press at Ballydoyle. “Can you teach a computer gut feeling?” Photograph:  Brian Lawless/PA

With a world record 28 Group One wins last year, Ballydoyle maestro at peak of his powers

Aidan O’Brien: “We’re doing it for everyone in the industry. We will survive anyway but we need everyone to stay in racing.” Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Attorney General now considering derogation for racing from workplace legislation

A view of racing at the Cheltenham Festival last week. Photo: James Crombie/Inpho

Willie Mullins confirmed that BHA officials had travelled to Ireland before the festival

Trainer Willie Mullins during the  2018 Cheltenham Festival at Cheltenham Racecourse. Photograph: Tim Goode/PA Wire

Gordon Elliott and Willie Mullins shift attention from Cheltenham to St Patrick’s weekend

Farclas (left) ridden by  Jack Kennedy clears the last hurdle before going on to win The JCB Triumph Hurdle Race on the final day of the Cheltenham Festival. Photograph: Getty Images

Ryanair boss says seven winners during festival week has been ‘surreal’

Jockey Davy Russell celebrates after winning the Ryanair Steeple Chase on Balko Des Flos at  Cheltenham. Photograph: Matt Cardy/Getty Images

Davy Russell crowned leading jockey for first time ahead of Jack Kennedy as Gordon Elliott retains leading trainer prize

 Richard Johnson on Native River celebrates after winning the Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup Chase at   Cheltenham, England. Photograph:  Justin Setterfield/Getty Images

Richard Johnson wins second ‘blue riband’ 18 years after first

Champion trainer Willie Mullins: his failing to win the Gold Cup has become “a thing”. Photograph:  The Jockey Club/Cheltenham Racecourse

Champion trainer has finished runner-up on six occasions – but he’s not dwelling on it

Willie Mullins: has almost twice as many runners on Friday as Gordon Elliott and Nicky Henderson put together. Photograph: Tim Goode/PA Wire

Trainer has four runners in pursuit of Cheltenham Gold Cup glory on Friday

 Richard Johnson riding Native River to victory in  The Betfair Denman Steeple Chase at Newbury in  February.  Photograph:  Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

Cheltenham: Nicky Henderson chases historic achievement with enigmatic Might Bite

 Jack Kennedy riding Shattered Love clear the last to win The JLT Novices Steeple Chase at Cheltenham. Photograph:  Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

English runner Missed Approach prevents Irish horses going through Festival card

 Willie Mullins secured a record 61st winner at Cheltenham on Thursday when Laurina claimed the Trull House Stud Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle. Photograph:  David Davies/PA Wire

‘We never thought you could do that with a base in Ireland coming over her’

 Robbie Power on Supasundae wins the Irish Champion Hurdle at Leopardstown in February, just ahead of  Paul Townend on Faugheen. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Despite soft ground, Robbie Power is focusing on the finishing post in Stayers’ Hurdle

Unowhatimeanharry: was expected to win this last year and didn’t. If he comes back to his very best, that could be good enough this time. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Mares allowance could be crucial to Gordon Elliott's Shattered Love in JLT

Sub Lieutenant: last year he  closed on Un De Sceaux from the final fence, eventually narrowing the gap to a length and a half. Photograph: Inpho/Presseye

De Bromhead star aims to give Michael O’Leary a first victory in own race

Trainer Gordon Elliott and jockey Jack Kennedy  after winning the Fred Winter Juvenile Handicap Hurdle on Veneer of Charm  at Cheltenham Racecourse. Photograph: Tim Goode/PA Wire

Gordon Elliot claims 468-1 hat-trick with Ruby Walsh leg injury not as bad as first feared

 Altior ridden by Nico de Boinville on his way to winning the  Champion Chase  ahead of Paul Townend and Min at Cheltenham. Photograph:  Michael Steele/Getty Images

Douvan falls at fourth last but Mullins says encouraging run was ‘a huge positive’

Paul Townend on Next Destination comes home to win the Novice Chase at Naas in January. Willie Mullins has a horse that in most years would boast an outstanding profile for Ballymore Novice Hurdle. Photograph: Inpho

Gordon Elliott versus Willie Mullins contest: Samcro takes on Next Destination

 Jack Kennedy rides  Samcro clearat the last to win the Deloitte Novice Hurdle at Leopardstown in February. Photograph:  Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

Unusually mature teenage sensation has pressure of riding odds-on favourite

Ruby Walsh celebrates on Benie Des Dieux after winning the OLBG Mares’ Hurdle at Cheltenham on Day One. Photograph: Andrew Boyers/Reuters

Willie Mullins closing in on Nicky Henderson’s festival record after 54-1 hat-trick

Buveur D’Air ridden by Barry Geraghty (left) on the way to winning the Unibet Champion Hurdle Challenge Trophy at Cheltenham. Photograph: Andrew Boyers/Action Images via Reuters

Willie Mullins’s well backed second-string Melon comes up a neck short of favourite

 Nico de Boinville riding Altior  to win the bet365 Celebration Chase at Sandown Park in April 2017. Photograph:  Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

Douvan returns to track a year after champion chase flop, but beating Altior is a big ask

Getabird:  will carry the colours of Ricci’s wife Susannah as a heavy favourite for the Supreme Novices Hurdle (1.30).  Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

Colourful American hoping Douvan and Faugheen can recapture former glory

Apple’s Jade ridden by Bryan Cooper (right) beats Vroom Vroom Mag ridden by Paul Townend to win the OLBG Mares Hurdle at Cheltenham last year. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Getabird and Footpad well-placed to strike for Grade One glory for Mullins

 Buveur D’Air: looks a horse at the peak of his capabilities, coming here on the back of an unbeaten season and proven to have no issues with soft ground. Photograph:  Alan  Crowhurst/Getty Images)

McManus and Henderson can extend their respective remarkable record in feature

Road To Respect: Noel Meade is hopeful there will be decent ground at Cheltenham on Friday for his Gold Cup contender. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

John Oxx’s Tullyallen a contender in eve-of-festival mile maiden at Dundalk

Douvan:  may be switched to Ryanair Chase from the Queen Mother Champion Chase – a decision will be made on Monday.  Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Gowran five-timer indicates Mullins’ team of 50-plus horse in good form for Cheltenham

Samcro is one of the Irish bankers of the festival. Photograph: Alan Crowhurst/Getty

All eyes on the stunning Samcro while quite a few throw their hat into Gold Cup ring

JP McManus: the wealthy businessman, gambler and racing magnate remains a largely inscrutable figure.   Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Race-ready tycoon has enjoyed 52 winners at festival since his first in 1982

Killultagh Vic. He jumped  eight fences in a post-race school at Leopardstown on Friday. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Jezki wins 16th race of illustrious career at Leopardstown

Sizing John, pictured here with  Kate Harrington, will not defend next week’s Cheltenham Gold Cup.  Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Jessica Harrington says hairline fracture of pelvis found after morning canter

Ruby Walsh: proved his return to full fitness by guiding Lareena to victory at Thurles. Photograph: Oisín Keniry/Inpho

Champion jockey has one ride, on board Karalee, at Leopardstown on Friday

Sizing John: Jessica Harrington’s Gold Cup hero may have a pre-festival workout at Leopardstown on Friday.  Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

Ruby Walsh keen to return from injury with Cheltenham festival looming

Special Tiara, ridden by Noel Fehily,   winning  the Champion Chase  at Cheltenham in 2017. Photograph:  Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Willie Mullins plans to pitch both Douvan and Min against Henderson’s star Altior

Unless the weather goes “Sodom and Gomorrah”, Ballymore will be the plan for Samcro, said Eddie O’Leary.  Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Eddie O’Leary rules out audacious festival double attempt by supermare Apple’s Jade

Willie Mullins with Douvan, who could return in the Champion Chase at Cheltenham. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Aidan O’Brien’s Mendelssohn in line to start road to Kentucky Derby at Dundalk

Jockey Derek O’Connor (right) is congratulated by Jack Kennedy after winning the Irish Gold Cup with Edwulf. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

On The Fringe back in contention for a sixth Cheltenham festival appearance

The racing programme has been decimated by the recent Siberian weather conditions and is not scheduled to resume until Thursday with two meetings due to be run. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Thurles meeting due to take place same day in doubt with organisers ‘playing it by ear’

Jessica Harrington watches as Our Duke passes by during the media visit to her Commonstown Stables in Moone. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA

Noel Fehily takes over for the ‘spare’ ride on Our Duke in Cheltenham feature

Clonmel is currently raceable but if the ground is frozen before Wednesday’s declaration time there’s little chance of racing getting a green light. Photograph: Inpho

Track is currently raceable but predicted to get as low as minus six on Wednesday night

Willie Mullins: “Gordon has the better bankers this year. Samcro [Ballymore] looks an Irish banker. But what can you do. We have to make our own plans.”   Photo credit should read: Niall Carson/PA

Uncertainty has plagued some of champion trainer’s prominent stars this season

Clonmel’s meeting on Thursday could be in ‘serious trouble’

Can you imagine the galvanising impact on racing of a Secret Jockey?  Photograph: Phil Cole/Getty Images

The world needs more people to lift the lid and not stick to the media-training book

OLBG Hurdle champion Apple’s Jade (right) has been nominated by owner Michael O’Leary as his best Cheltenham hope. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Weather woe and gloomy long-range forecast may push connections to shuffle options

Yorkhill: drifted significantly on the Betfair exchange in the minutes before he ran at Leopardstown earlier this month. He finished sixth to Min in a Grade Two chase. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Aidan O’Brien’s Clear Skies expected to step up to Group company in style at Lingfield

Patrick Mullins on Carefully Selected. Willie Mullins’s horse  could be a popular selection to get the better of Gordon Elliott’s Invincible Cave. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Bellshill makes return to action in Bobbyjo Chase at Fairyhouse

Denis Egan says a review could be required after 29% rise in breaches

Willie Mullins: the report shows big trainers like Mullins are getting bigger but middle-ranking colleagues are being forced  out of business. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

IHRB report for 2017 shows 10.5 per cent drop in numbers holding National Hunt licenses

Overall tests rise to over 4,000 of which five were positive

Barry Geraghty guiding Apple’s Shakira to victory in the JCB Triumph Trial at Cheltenham in December. Photograph: Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

‘Every Chance’ Yanworth will line up in Stayers Hurdle at Cheltenham next month

Warren Gatland: some of the stuff thrown at him in Irish rugby circles  over the years only proves how much more sinned against than sinner he has been. Photograph: Paul Childs/Reuters

Lions and Wales coach has gone on to prove himself as one of the very best in the game

Diamond Cauchois leads 1-2 for trainer in featured Grade Two Ladbrokes Boyne Hurdle

Our Duke and Robbie Power (left) win the Grade Two  Red Mills Steeplechase from Presenting Percy  at Gowran Park. Photograph: PA Wire

Noel Fehily to partner Gowran winner Our Duke in the ‘Blue Riband’ at Cheltenham

Our Duke:  an authoritative defeat of the leading novice Presenting Percy will see current 16-1 odds for steeplechasing’s ‘Blue Riband’ tumble significantly. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Coney Island’s Ascot clash with Top Notch, Waiting Patiently and Cue Card an ideal test

 Davy Russell: the Cork jockey has 10 booked chances this weekend to improve on his impressive haul of 97 winners  this season. Photograph: Oisín Keniry/Inpho

Thyestes winner Monbeg Notorious aims for Grade Two success at Navan

Trainer Willie Mullins and Douvan. Photograph: PA Wire

Vroum Vroum Mag also in line for pre-Cheltenham comeback appearance at Navan

Grand National winner Rule The World during a homecoming event in Mullingar in 2016. Photograph: PA Wire

Irish-trained winner at 7-4 as weights for world’s most famous race released

Douvan with his trainer Willie Mullins: “I’m very happy with his progress.” Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Willie Mullins-trained horse hasn’t run since suffering pelvic injury at last year’s festival

Robert Power clears the last on Our Duke before going on to win the Irish Grand National at Fairyhouse in April 2017. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Jessica Harrington to enter star novice in Saturday’s Red Mills Chase

Georgia take on USA last November at Mikheil Meskhi Stadium in Tbilisi, Georgia. Photo: Levan Verdzeuli/Getty Images

Italy continue to feel cosy club’s embrace while Europe’s sixth best team is isolated

Davy Russell: has recorded 95 winners this term and is 30 clear of Paul Townend in the jockeys’ championship.  Photograph: Matt Browne/Sportsfile

Hardline’s success in the Listed Novice Hurdle the first leg of a Gordon Elliott hat-trick

 Horse Racing Ireland chief Brian Kavanagh:  “I don’t think there will be a dip in audience or viewers.” Photograph:  Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Brian Kavanagh plays down concerns over Racing UK’s Irish racing rights deal

Barry Geraghty on Bleu et Rouge (right). The JP McManus-owned star will run in the lucrative Betfair Hurdle at Newbury. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

David Mullins on board as Benie Des Dieux returns to action in Naas feature

Brian Kavanagh says 95% of Irish races will be live in full-screen on Racing UK

Jack Kennedy on board Monbeg Notorious comes home to win the the Goffs Thyestes Handicap Steeplechase at Gowran. Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

Gordon Elliott runner receives a 13lb hike for impressive Thyestes Chase success

Willie Mullins pictured at the  Dublin Racing Festival at  Leopardstown on Saturday. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

‘We’re as surprised as anyone. If the authorities think there needs to be an investigation that’s no problem’

Leopardstown Racecourse. Photograph: Oisin Keniry/Inpho

Melon and Yorkhill both drifted in lay betting ahead of races on Saturday

Jack Kennedy and Samcro clear the last to win the Deloitte Novice Hurdle at Leopardstown on Sunday. Photograph: Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

Joseph O’Brien reveals there was no plan for returning Edwulf before fairytale win

Davy Russell on board Apple’s Jade (left) and Robbie Power on board Supasundae at Leopardstown over Christmas. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

‘Why is nobody mentioning the competition authority . . . before our industry pictures are gone down the Swanee?’

Edwulf, ridden by Derek O’Connor, wins the Irish Gold Cup at Leopardstown ahead of Jack Kennedy on Outlander. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Willie Mullins crowned leading trainer at new festival with seven winners

Photograph: Russell Pritchard/Inpho/Presseye

Ryanair boss believes At The Races would fold if coverage of Irish racing moves to new host

Robbie Power on Supasundae wins the Irish Champion Hurdle ahead of Paul Townend on Faugheen. Photo: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Jessica Harrington’s Supasundae beat the favourite to take the Irish Champion Hurdle

A rebranding of the Racing UK product is anticipated to reflect the addition of Irish racing. Photograph: Russell Pritchard/Inpho

Racecourses expected to approve deal to leave At The Races channel next week

Ruby Walsh on Faugheen: If the old Faugheen shows up at Leopardstown this weekend, it will be a gift from the punting gods.  Photograph: Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

Faugheen returns to action after Christmas blip, and Samcro will try to justify the hype

Capri (left) wins the 2017 Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby from Cracksman (right) and Wings Of Eagles (centre). Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

This year’s race takes place on June 30th with the winner getting prize of €850,000

 Joseph O’Brien: the Melbourne Cup-winning trainer is aiming  for an early midweek boost from West Coast Time at Down Royal on Wednesday. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Trainer has 18 entries for Dublin Racing Festival as Rekindling nominated to Australian Cup

Officials are keeping their fingers crossed that Faugheen stays on course to be the headline act of the Dub;in Racing Festival. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Melon challenging Faugheen for favouritism in Irish Champion Hurdle

Monalee: expected to line up  in Sunday’s Grade One €100,000 Flogas Novice Chase at Leopardstown. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Saturday winner Poormans Hill makes quick return to action at Punchestown

Road to Respect: “He’s in the mix but it will be ground dependant . . . If it’s too soft he’ll go straight to Cheltenham,” said Eddie O’Leary. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

O’Leary’s Gigginstown Stud odds-on to be top owner at Dublin Racing Festival

“I know people look through the white rails at the racetrack and see a sport. But to make that happen is agriculture,” said trainer Ger Lyons. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

HRI now desperately seeking a derogation from implications of industrial relations law

Willie Mullins:  is 1-3 with Powers to claim  the new Dublin Racing Festival’s trainer title. Photograph:  Bryan Keane/Inpho

Willie Mullins warms up for ‘Dublin Racing Festival’ with hat-trick

Jury Duty leads a pair of Gordon Elliott runners in the Grade Three Woodlands Novice Chase at Naas on Sunday.  Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Attendance levels at first festival ‘a secondary issue’ for CEO Brian Kavanagh

Willie Mullins:  saddled a 1-2-3 in a Beginners Chase at Navan last Saturday and he could supply a similar result in the Fairyhouse opener. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

Ex Patriot And Rachael Blackmore Fly Irish Flag At Cheltenham

 Ryan Moore riding US Navy Flag to victory in the Darley Dewhurst Stakes at Newmarket . Photograph:  Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

US Navy Flag and Clemmie top juvenile rankings

John Oxx: “We were always agriculture. We have to be agriculture. Looking after horses is an agricultural activity. It’s looking after animals.” Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

Legendary trainer describes regulations as ‘not practical’ and ‘not fair’

Great Field: the Willie Mullins-trained Grade One winner remains as short as 7-1 for the Queen Mother Champion Chase at Cheltenham. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Defi Du Seuil on track for Irish Champion Hurdle at Leopardstown

Alpha Des Obeaux:  ran sixth to Road To Respect in the Christmas Chase on his previous start and secured a valuable success in November at Clonmel when beating A Toi Phil. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Samcro on course for Saturday week’s Lacy & Partners Novice Hurdle at Leopardstown

Noel Meade:  has  predicted some trainers will be “wiped out” after a recent Labour Court rejection of a Ballydoyle Racing’s appeal against Workplace Relations Commission compliance notices. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

HRI to meet with Government officials and seek a derogation from rules for stable staff

Paul Townend: he will hope for better fortune than his only previous ride on Un De Sceaux. Photograph:  Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

Gordon Elliott could pass €3 million prizemoney mark for season this weekend

Ger Lyons: “You can have all the regulations you like but it Ballydoyle can’t handle it, we’re all finished.” Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

Top trainer Ger Lyons concerned new rules will make staff crisis even worse

Trainers Noel Meade, Gavin Cromwell and Jessica Harrington at the promotion event for the Dublin Racing Festival. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Samcro set to bypass Champion Hurdle and stick to novice route

Sub Lieutenant will try to go one better than his runner-up spot to Sizing John last year in the Grade Three Horse & Jockey Kinloch Brae Chase at Thurles. Photograph: Inpho/Presseye

Sizing John and Don Cossack claimed Grade Three Horse & Jockey Kinloch Brae Chase

Willie Mullins: trails Gordon Elliott by over half a million euro in the trainers’ championship. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

Un De Sceaux hot favourite to make Ascot history in Clarence House Chase

Faugheen being put through his paces at Willie Mullins’s yard in Closutton, Co Carlow in preparation for a possible appearance at Leopardstown. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

New lucrative €1.5 million weekend is first major festival action of 2018

Davy Russell rode Doctor Phoenix to glory in €100,000 Bar One Dan Moore Handicap Chase. Photograph: iStock

Doctor Phoenix and Mitchouka bring Elliott to the verge of €3m in prize money for season

Trainer Noel Meade: “There’s a lot of talk about whether or not we’re in agriculture or not, and to be honest I think we need an identity of our own.” Photograph: Sheridan/Inpho

Trainer says yards will be ‘wiped out’ if compromise is not found over work hours

Denis Egan: “You don’t turn around 238 years of history at the press of a button. But the major stuff is organised and it has been very smooth.” Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Racing’s anti-doping task force expected to meet before end of month

A file photograph  of the gallops at Aidan O’Brien’s Ballydoyle yard. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Coolmore decline to comment ahead of Labour Court ruling being made public

Trainer Aidan O’Brien during early morning exercises for two-year-old colts at Ballydoyle

Yard of top trainer Aidan O’Brien claimed grooms and riders were engaged in agricultural activities

Jockey arrangements may have been occupying trainers ahead of Punchestown and Fairyhouse

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