John Magnier: a portrait of The Boss

Business magnate John Magnier, currently embroiled in a battle with Britain’s National Portrait Gallery over a valuable Joshua Reynolds artwork, has a formidable reputation for coming out on top – but lately, not everything has gone his way

Racing stud owner John Magnier is wrestling with the National Portrait Gallery in Britain over Joshua Reynolds’s Portrait of Omai. Illustration: Peter Hanan


Role: billionaire horse-breeder, part-time art acquirer

Age: 75

Appearance: flinty-eyed and formidable

Newsworthiness: Magnier is facing off with the British National Portrait Gallery over a national treasure, The Portrait of Omai

William Jones found out how formidable an opponent John Magnier and Coolmore can be. In 2015, Jones wrote a book about his time as a stablehand at Coolmore that contained a large number of dramatic claims.

Management at Coolmore regarded the claims as ...