Plowing Championships: On the second day in Co Laois, many politicians converge with a ready-made audience of 100,000 people

“These are two famous people I’ve seen in the last ten minutes,” declared a teenager as he passed Taoiseach Micheál Martin in front of the Fianna Fáil tent.

We didn’t know who the other famous person might have been – but it’s safe to say it was a politician.

By the second day of the Tillers’ Championships in Ratheniska, Co. Laois, every Minister and TD who knew the value of a prepackaged audience of 100,000 people had come to the site.

It was almost like the old days in the political tents.

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Taoiseach Micheál Martin during a tour during day two of the National Plowing Championships in Ratheniska, Co. Laois. Photo: Mark Condren

Sensibly, Attorney General Helen McEntee had brought a spare pair of runners to change into.

Agriculture Secretary Charlie McConalogue said this year’s event had attracted a lot of attention.

Charlie Flanagan welcomed everyone to “the home of the plough.”

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Eamonn White of Dublin competes in the 2-Floor Vintage class on day two of the National Plowing Championships in Ratheniska, Co. Laois. Photo: Mark Condren

And Mary Lou McDonald and Michelle O’Neill had to pause in the middle of their press conference to announce over the loudspeaker the competition for the best-dressed gentleman with a prize of 500 euros.

“That’s not bad,” Mary Lou nodded.

Even Northern Ireland’s Agriculture Minister Edwin Poots was there – deep in conversation about a forage machine that measures methane emissions from cows. It turns out they’re more likely to exhale the gas than any other type of emission.

Meanwhile, upstairs plowing, the national and world championships were going on in a warm breeze.

After a three-year hiatus, those who showed up on the second day enjoyed the atmosphere and the opportunity to meet.

“It’s great to be back and to see so many people,” said Margot Curl of Abbeyleix, Co. Laois, who is there with her husband Jeremy and their children Wilfred, 3, and baby Charlie, who is 10 months old was.

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Phelim Cotter from Cork competes in the 2-Floor Vintage class on day two of the National Plowing Championships in Ratheniska, Co. Laois. Photo: Mark Condren

https://www.independent.ie/news/ploughing-championships-day-two-in-co-laois-sees-influx-of-politicians-with-a-ready-made-audience-of-100000-people-42007419.html Plowing Championships: On the second day in Co Laois, many politicians converge with a ready-made audience of 100,000 people

Fry Electronics Team

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