Hurling for Cancer Research 2018 raises €138,500 for cancer research

€830,000 raised in seven years

Christmas celebrations continued at the Leopardstown racing festival today as leading racehorse trainer Jim Bolger and Champion National Hunt jockey Davy Russell revealed that Hurling for Cancer Research 2018 raised €138,500 to fund lifesaving cancer research.

They were joined by RTE pundit and former Galway hurling manager Cyril Farrell, and Wexford hurlers Lee Chin, Liam Og McGovern, Matthew O’Hanlon and Conor McDonald to reveal their phenomenal fundraising efforts.

The duo’s celebrity hurling match has been a permanent fixture in sporting calendars for seven years now, raising a total of €830,000 for the Irish Cancer Society’s cancer research projects during that time.

This year a slew of sporting stars from various disciplines took to St Conleth’s Park before a record crowd of 5,500 people. Amongst the sports personalities in attendance were Irish footballers Paul McGrath, Niall Quinn and Stephen Hunt, hurling legends Brian Cody, Lee Chin, Richie Hogan, Liam Griffin and rugby stars Tadgh Furlong and Tony Ward. From the world of horse racing were Grand National winning rider Katie Walsh, Champion National Hunt trainer Willie Mullins and owner Rich Ricci to name but a few.

Victory on the night went to Davy Russell’s Best who outscored Jim Bolger’s Stars 5 -21 to 6 -13. 

Hurling for Cancer Research organiser, Jim Bolger said, “Despite victory going to Davy’s team this was one of the best games we’ve had. We experienced huge support from Ireland’s sporting stars, a record breaking crowd in attendance, and crucially, people dug deep to fund vital research. Cancer is unfortunately on the increase in Ireland. One way we can help stop this disease is through research, and we are so proud to be contributing to this important fight against cancer.”

The Irish Cancer Society relies solely on donations to fund crucial cancer research. Since 2010, the Society’s supporters have helped ensure that €25 million has been invested in research, enabling more than 150 cancer researchers to work on a diverse range of research projects that will ultimately lead to better ways of diagnosing and treating cancer. Some of these initiatives include BREAST-PREDICT, a €7.5m investment focused exclusively on breast cancer research, and Blood Cancer Network Ireland (BCNI), a €2.3m clinical research network for blood cancers, co-funded by Science Foundation Ireland. 

Mark Mellett, Head of Fundraising, Irish Cancer Society said, “Each year we are struck by the immense support from the sporting community for Hurling for Cancer Research. Thanks to events like this vital cancer research projects like BCNI are being carried out in Ireland right now. Blood cancers make up approximately 10 per cent of all cancers and are the fourth most common cause of cancer-related deaths in Ireland. In 2018 BCNI ran two clinical trials in Ireland, giving Irish patients first access to potentially more effective treatments for their cancer. We are hugely thankful to all involved in Hurling for Cancer Research for their dedication to funding lifesaving research in Ireland.”