Nina Carberry and the 30-question HRI challenge

Nina Carberry and the 30-question HRI challenge

Irish Grand National-winning jockey and 2011 Meath Sportsperson of the Year Nina Carberry took the Horse Racing Ireland 30-question challenge for the Meath Chronicle in the eighth of our series.

1. What was your childhood ambition?

To win the English Grand National

2. Growing up, who was your sporting hero?

Sonia O’Sullivan

3. Do you have a mentor?

My dad. He passed away in 2017 but he was a great support.

4. What or where is your happy place?

Eating chocolate fudge ice cream at the cinema

5. What sparked your love of racing?

I had no choice, I was born into it

6. What horse put you on the map?

Dabiroun - my first winner at Cheltenham in 2005 for Paul Nolan

6. Your favourite horse?

On the Fringe trained by Enda Bolger and owned by JP McManus. He earned his place in hunter chaser folklore for doing the ‘treble double’. He won the big hunter chase races at Cheltenham, Aintree and Punchestown Festivals two years in a row. I was in the seat for five of them.

St. James's Place Foxhunter Chase Challenge Cup at Cheltenham (2015 & 2106)

The Fox Hunters' Chase at Aintree (2015 & 2106)

Champion Hunters Chase at the Punchestown Festival (2015 & 2106)

7. What was it like to ride in your first race?

I was very excited but a bit nervous

8. How long does it take to learn race-riding tactics?

A lifetime – I was always learning

9. Describe the feeling of riding your first winner?

It was a super feeling, especially with all my family there

10. What is your most memorable racing moment?

Winning the 2011 Irish Grand National on Organisedconfusion. My uncle Arthur trained the horse

11. Your favourite Irish racecourse?


12. If you weren’t a jockey what would you be?

A PE Teacher or a Basketball Coach

13. If you could ride one horse, what would it be?

Sea The Stars

14. How do you cope with pressure?

I talk about it until the cows come home

15. What mental preparation do you do for the big days?

I just focus and try and treat it like any other day

16. How do you stay motivated?

Two small children will keep you very motivated

17. How do you deal with dips in form?

You just take the bad with the good and move on

18. Outside of racing, what is your favourite sporting moment?

Ireland beating England in Croke Park

19. Can you give us a Netflix/film recommendation?

The Stranger

20. What is your guilty pleasure?


21. Desert island discs – name your favourite three songs?

The Killers - All These Things That I've Done

Bruce Springsteen - Waitin on a Sunny Day

Elton John - Tiny Dancer

22. What person do you admire the most and why?

My brother Paul, he did it his way

23. Favourite dinner?

Anything with chicken

24. Where is your favourite place to go on holidays?

If the sun shines you can’t beat an Irish beach

25. What ambitions do you still have?

To sell a Group 1 winner on the flat or a Gold Cup winner.

26. What is the hidden gem of Meath?

The view from Mrs O’s pub in Skreen

27. When you think of your home what immediately springs to mind?

Where did all these Dubs come from?!?

28. If you had one piece of advice for everyone during these worrying times of Covid-19, what would it be?

If we all do our bit, we will get through this

29. If you were to go back to when you were 20 years old and give yourself one piece of advice, what would it be?

Don’t buy your house until 2010

30. Favourite saying/quote?

What is for you won’t pass you by

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