Sand sculpture launches this evening's Laytown Races

When the tides of creativity meet the sands of Laytown, magic happens!

On Monday 4th September, locals and visitors alike were greeted with something a little out of the ordinary: a colossal 100-foot sand portrait of one of Irish racing’s rising stars, Danny Mullins.

Sand virtuoso, Sean Corcoran, wielding nothing much more than a garden rake, transformed

Laytown's sandy canvas into a lifelike rendition of the Tote's very own frontman, Danny Mullins.

The artwork, unveiled in anticipation of the annual Laytown raceday today, left onlookers with smiles on their faces but curious minds.

Indeed, Laytown races occupies an extraordinary place in both the Irish and British racing calendars, being the only event of its kind run on a beach, in accordance with the rules of the Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board (IHRB).

This tradition dates back over 150 years, with the annual spectacle drawing horseracing enthusiasts from far and wide, with over 5,000 people expected this evening.

Danny Mullins, caught off guard by the surprise, exclaimed, “With all the racing promos and pictures at racecourses these days, it's really cool to see my face amongst some of them. It’s not every day you see yourself in 100ft of sand down at the beach in Laytown, so fair play to the Tote for doing it, I think it looks class.”

Racing fans might wonder why the face of a jumps jockey adorns a beach known for flat racing.

Danny Mullins does in fact boast one career win at Laytown and is the proud poster boy for the race day's sponsors, the Tote.

The Tote commissioned this grand sand portrait as a celebration of their involvement in this unique event.

Johnny Woodhead, Tote Marketing Executive, expressed his excitement, saying, "We're really proud to support Laytown races and want to help make it a resounding success for all. We’ll be offering Tote Guarantee both on and off the course meaning our price can’t be beaten, so anyone looking to back winners wants to be doing it with the Tote. Let’s just hope the weather holds and all is set for a fantastic week!”

Sean Corcoran's artistic endeavour which took an energy sapping six hours to complete.

Sean said of his piece of art: "I only take on commissions which I believe I can get behind. Like many people in Ireland, I have a connection to racing! My daughter is an apprentice jockey and rides out for Ken Condon and Joseph O’Brien. Once she’d confirmed that Danny was a great guy we got cracking on those trademark curls! Delighted to be able to create this portrait just in time for the prestigious Laytown Races”.

As the sun sets on Laytown's sandy shores, the legacy of Danny Mullins' colossal sand portrait will be washed away by the tides, but the Tote hopes it will ensure an enduring testament to the fusion of art and sport that makes Laytown raceday a must-see event on the racing calendar for every racing fan.