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Stack racing, one of Ireland’s national treasures in steeple chasing (National Hunt racing), has been a leader in the sport for decades. Their name has long been linked with Red Rum, the horse that the founder of Stack racing, Tommy Stack, rode to a third Grand National win at Aintree. Tommy, twice named National Hunt Champion Jockey (1975 and 1977), moved on to become a top trainer after he obtained his trainer’s license in 1986. Soon thereafter he trained the 1000 Guineas winners Las Meninas and Tarascon, in addition to Kostroma, winner of the Beverly D. Stakes.
Today, Stack Racing, based in Thomastown Castle, County Tipperary, is revered as one of Ireland's most consistent yards ever. Several years ago Tommy's son, Fozzy joined the operation and soon became a major asset. The Stacks have produced a steady stream of big-race winners, most notably Lolly For Dolly, who won the Group 2 Windsor Forest Stakes at Royal Ascot in June, 2011. Stack Racing followed that up with a double at the Killarney Festival with Van Rooney and Croi An Or. In 2014, Coin Of Courage won by a neck at Navan.
Tommy's love of horses developed as a boy on the family farm, where he jumped a piebald pony over poles in a field. When he was just 12, he went to Mungret College in Limerick, where he played rugby on the Munster schoolboys' team. That is where he met future jockey Barry Brogan and future trainer Bobby Barry.
Tommy had hoped to join the army equitation team, but his life took a different route. After graduation he returned home to work on the farm and then went to Dublin, where he sold insurance. Tommy had become close friends with Barry Brogan and would go to his father's stables on the weekend to ride. Eventually Barry took over the training operation. A few months later, he had three runners in Liverpool but had to be away all week. He asked Tommy to take a week off work and fill in for him. Tommy did so and never looked back. He quit his insurance job and wrote to 10 trainers in England, offering to work for free for the chance to become a jockey. He got only one reply - from Captain Neville Crump, who regretted he could not help him. Luckily Tommy's brother-in-law introduced him to trainer Bobby Renton, who gave him his start as a jockey. His first win as an amateur came at Weatherby on New Money in 1965.
Half a century later, Tommy remains as dedicated as ever to the horses under his care. "I only want the best for my horses. Nutrition is an important factor in the management of horses. I am so excited that Cavalor supports me, as well as the well-being of my horses," he said.