€60 Million Worth of Business and Pleasure at Punchestown 2016


In three weeks time over 120,000 people will descend upon the towns and villages surrounding Punchestown racecourse, Co. Kildare  for the 2016 Punchestown Festival, April 26th to 30th. This sporting and social highlight on the Irish calendar impacts the local economy to the tune of €60 million.


Overseas visitors account for 20% of the overall attendance giving a significant boost to the tourism trade in the locality. Racing gets underway from 3.40 in the afternoon meaning local attractions, pubs, salons, restaurants, golf courses, transport and accommodation providers all benefit as visitors spend the morning enjoying what county Kildare has to offer.


Of the 43 event sponsors 14 are Kildare based businesses with hundreds of additional local enterprises involved as suppliers, hospitality clients and ticket purchasers. Punchestown is Ireland’s largest sporting hospitality event with 16,500 clients already booked in for this year’s renewal. A total of 812 companies commercially engage with the racecourse with 25% of those based in the United Kingdom.


This year Lemongrass Naas will celebrate five years as proud sponsor of the Lemongrass Leading trainer and Rider Award. Thus far Willie Mullins and Ruby Walsh have been the sole recipients of the €2,000 each prize. Perhaps 2016 will present an opportunity for a new title holder as in addition to Punchestown Mullins also targets the Aintree and Festival in a bid to secure the British Trainers championship, a feat only achieved on one occasion in 1954 when Vincent O’Brien made history as the first Irish trainer to land the title.


Shona Dreaper, Punchestown Communications Manager looked forward to this year’s event “Punchestown is a celebration of all things Irish with great sport, entertainment, style and the famous festival atmosphere. We welcome such a diverse demographic every year which is a testament to the fact that there is something for everyone at the Punchestown Festival”.

The Punchestown Festival gets underway Tuesday 26th April and runs until Saturday 30th when the Irish jump season celebrates it’s grand finale. Tickets from just €25 and full entertainment, style and racing details are available from www.punchestown.com


Allan Shine, CEO of the Chamber said, “The seasonal up-turn that the Punchestown Festival brings to the North Kildare Region is evident across the board. All types of businesses from hotels, restaurants, pubs, hair salons, retailers, boutiques even through to golf clubs and tourist attractions enjoy the benefits of the event”.  We are delighted to see so many Kildare businesses sponsor various races at this year’s festival.