Naas jockey Katie Walsh has been names as the The Irish Times / Irish Sports Council ‘Sportswoman of the Month’ for April, following her remarkable third place finish in this year’s Grand National which was the highest ever finish by a woman jockey.
Katie made her debut in the race aboard the heavily backed Seabass, trained by her dad, Ted, and made the Aintree records books, beating off competition from Nina Carberry by becoming the most successful lady jockey to ride in the history of the Grand National.
Commenting on her third place finish in the race, Katie said, “It was just absolutely fantastic, an unbelievable experience I’ll never, ever forget. I love looking back on the race on my own, on the overused Sky+ button, just re-living it all. It was a special day. It was a dream come true for me just to get a ride in the race, but to be placed at the end was fantastic.”
This is the 27 year old’s second time to win a Sportswoman award and she will battle it out against the other monthly winners including cross country runner, Fionnuala Britton; show jumper, Jessica Kurten; rugby player, Fiona Coghlan and hockey player, Audrey O’Flynn in December 2012 for the overall Sportswoman of the Year title.
The aim of the Sportswoman of the Year awards is to recognise the abilities and achievements of women in Irish sports. The awards run over a 12 month period, with the judges selecting a winner each month for her ability to excel at sport. From the 12 monthly winners, the overall Sportswoman of the Year is selected and announced in December.