Carlow NH Breeder wins €2,500 Cash Prize 

Hilda Rothwell is the 2024 winner of Dungar Quality Oats Cash Prize for NH Breeders. The €2,500 cash prize was given by business owner and NH breeder Tadhg O’Leary as a gesture to recognise the contribution that Irish National Hunt breeders do for the racing industry in Ireland.

Hailing from Co. Carlow, Hilda Rothwell bred the four-year-old filly Echoing Silence who achieved a sale topping price of £410,000 at Tattersalls Cheltenham Festival Sale in March this year for Sam Curling and Correna and JJ Bowe. Hilda had sold Echoing Silence as a 3-year-old for just €28,000. The daughter of Doyen and out of a Taipan mare Taipers, this filly is half sister two Deafening Silence who won the Grade 2 Winter Novices Hurdle at Sandown last December.

When asked if Hilda had noticed anything special about Echoing Silence as a foal and youngster she said ‘Oh yes, Echoing always had great presence. Her conformation and walk made her very eye-catching in the parade ring. She was always easy to handle and I understand from Correna that they were riding her within a week after getting her!’ Hilda also acknowledges the valuable advice she has had from Daryl Deacon of The Borotown Stud who helped her prep Echoing Silence for sale. 

With a family history of horses and breeding, Hilda grew up through Pony Club and hunting. She also used to ride out for local trainer Michael McCullough and maintains this is when she got bitten by the bug for racing.  Her late brother also shared her interest in horses and breeding and they had some luck over the years winning at various National Hunt and Point-to-Point meetings.  

The prize was presented by Tadhg O’Leary of Dungar Quality Oats at the Ormond Hunt point to point in Ballingarry on Sunday 26th May. It was open to any breeder of an Irish bred 4 or 5-year-old mare that had ran in a maiden Point to Point in Ireland between 01.01.24 and 31.05.24 that were then sold in one of a number of point-to-point sales. After each sale a potential winner was identified and entered on a league table. 

Explaining why he was giving the prize, Tadhg said ‘As a breeder myself I understand the challenges they face and as we all know that without the breeder there would be no horses so I felt it important to reward the work they do. I am in business just over thirty years now and these people are my customers so it is my way of giving back and saying thank you.’ Tadhg then congratulated Hilda on being a most deserving winner and wished her future success with her horses. 

Upon receiving her prize, Hilda said she was delighted to win the prize and thanked Dungar Quality Oats saying ‘It is great to see breeders recognised’ and wished the new owners and connections of Echoing Silence all the best for the future with exciting times ahead.

Photo by Healy Photographers


Carlow NH Breeder wins €2,500 Cash Prize 

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