Northern Ireland children enjoy trophy design masterclass with Randox Health Grand National Trophy Silversmith Shannon O’Neill

Randox Health GN

Last week schoolchildren in Northern Ireland were offered the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet and learn from one of the world’s most renowned silversmiths, and designer of the Randox Health Grand National Trophy 2018, Shannon O’Neill.

As part of an exclusive trophy design masterclass during the 2018 Schools’ Tour with the Randox Health Grand National trophy, Shannon guided classes of students through the process of designing and developing a trophy for their own particular passions – whether that was horse racing, gymnastics or even playing video games!

A visit to Belfast Hospital School TOPS Centre kicked off the tour, which was being held for the second year, to mark Randox Health’s sponsorship of the world-renowned steeplechase. The 2018 trophy, which will be officially unveiled to the public on ITV1 on Thursday 12th April 2018, then made an appearance at schools in Belfast, Carrickfergus, Coleraine, Bushmills and Crumlin.

Dr. Peter FitzGerald, Founder and Managing Director of Randox Health, commented;

“We are very proud of our roots and the support of people in Northern Ireland has played a significant part in our global success. The trophy masterclass with Silversmith Shannon O’Neill and children from local schools was an important opportunity to support the arts in an engaging and dynamic manner, and of course to share the excitement of the build-up of the world’s greatest horse race.

“We’re committed to improving the health of people across the world and that’s why we’ve chosen to sponsor the Randox Health Grand National – The People’s Race. We hope that as a result people will learn about a more proactive and positive way to stay healthy and enjoy the magical moments that life gives us.”

Anthony Young, Principal of Straidhavern Primary School in Crumlin, welcomed the tour and the opportunity for Straidhavern Primary students to have a sneak peek at the exclusive Randox Health Grand National Trophy 2018;

“When our students found out that they were amongst the first people in the world to see the Randox Health Grand National Trophy they were absolutely thrilled, and admittedly, so were the teachers.  Horse racing is such a popular sport in Northern Ireland and so many of our pupils watch the Grand National at home with their families. To be able see the prestigious trophy up close and personal, and to learn about the inspiration behind its design, was such a fantastic experience for us all.

“Shannon was absolutely great with the pupils and encouraged them to think about their passions in life for which they would like to win a trophy. We had a range of designs – from boxing and hockey to Crufts and the X Factor, and Shannon really helped the creative juices flow. The students loved having a real-life artist talk to them about where she gets her inspiration and ideas from, and I imagine they will be talking about her masterclass for a long time.”

The Randox Health Grand National Trophy Tour 2018 came after the announcement that for the first time ever, the trophy-making process of the Randox Health Grand National will become a nationwide competition in 2019. Craftsmen will produce a design which is then selected by a panel of expert judges, made up of industry specialists, as well as some of the biggest names in racing.

The Randox Health Grand National 2018 Trophy Tour of Northern Ireland was as follows:

Tuesday 6th March: Belfast Hospital School TOPS Centre andBloomfield Collegiate

Wednesday 7th March: St Mary’s Primary School Belfast and Victoria Primary School Carrickfergus

Thursday 8th March: Bushmills Primary School and Sandelford Special School

Friday 9th March: Macosquin Primary School Coleraine and Straidhavern Primary School Crumlin

To view our gallery of the students’ trophy designs, please click here.

For more information about the Randox Health Grand National Trophy Design Masterclass please contact the Randox PR team by emailing or phone 028 9442 2413