RYANAIR BOSS MICHAEL O’LEARY TREATS ASTONISHED PASSENGERS TO FREE DRINKS AFTER HIS HORSE, TIGER ROLL, WINS GRAND NATIONALCategory:News
Passengers aboard a Ryanair flight from Liverpool to Dublin on Saturday evening shared some Grand National luck: free drinks during the 43-minute flight.
The airline’s chief executive, Michael O’Leary, was flying home to Ireland after his horse, Tiger Roll, won the steeplechase in a photo finish. It was the owner’s second Grand National victory.
Flight FR447 was delayed by half an hour while waiting for the winning jockey, Davy Russell, to board the Boeing 737.
Mr O’Leary used the public address system to apologise for the delay, saying: “This is because we had to bring the Grand National-winning jockey, Davy Russell”.
After the passengers cheered, the airline boss broke a long-standing Ryanair rule by giving away free alcohol.
He said: “Today we won the Grand National so, unusually on board this flight, there’s going to be a free bar, which I am personally going to pay for, but you’re all restricted to one free drink only.
“So free bar, and we may need to do a circuit over Dublin to get it all done.
“Thank you and apologies once again.”
The average price of an alcoholic drink on Ryanair is £5, so assuming 180 passengers availed of the once-in-a-lifetime offer, the gesture will have cost Mr O’Leary £900.
As winning owner, he collected over half-a-million pounds from the victory. His shareholding in the airline is worth around £700m.
Before the big race, Mr O’Leary picked up another trophy for the Stayers Hurdle, won by 14-1 outsider
In the press conference after his second Grand National win, the Ryanair chief executive complained that he would “have to pay a fortune in excess baggage fees” to take the two trophies back to Ireland. The airline charges £11 per kilo.
Some passengers took to social media after the race to mock Ryanair’s reputation. “Tartantrums” tweeted: “Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary owns the horse that won the Grand National at Aintree.
“It crossed the finish line somewhere near Carlisle. Jockey was charged £5 for the saddle.”