Record numbers turn out for a great first day of racing and fashion
The unpredictable weather did not deter plenty of ladies from donning their finest frocks in the hopes of being named the Best Dressed Lady at Punchestown yesterday.
It was a record first day for the Festival as 20,214 punters streamed through the gates.
Former Miss World Rosanna Davison, Katie Jane Golden, who owns competition sponsor Gold Fever Hair Extensions, and top stylist Laura Mullet had a tough decision to pick the most stylish lady.
A young boutique owner, Kirsty Farrell (19) from Newry, took the top prize yesterday and will return on Friday to compete in the grand final, which will be judged by Georgia Salpa.
She stunned in a two-tone white and maroon dress that she designed herself, which she teamed with black accessories and a fur stole.
"I totally didn't expect to win. It was a tough competition so I'm just so happy to be picked," she told the Herald.
There were no surprises when Douvan won The Herald Champion Novice Hurdle.
Trainer Willie Mullins described Douvan as being "as good as we ever had" after Ruby Walsh rode the brilliant six-year-old to win the grade one hurdle by six and a half lengths.
Herald Editor Alan Steenson presented the prize to Jo O'Riordan and Andy Roland, who accepted it for owner Dan Ricci, who won't be at the festival until the weekend.
Mullins has another winner when Felix Younger, ridden by his nephew Danny Mullins, won the BoyleSports Champion Steeplechase.
Also in attendance were Ivan Yates, Bernard Brogan and Niall Quinn.