An estimated €100,000 spent by the Irish Greyhound Board on a bad bend on a greyhound race-track has significantly reduced race collisions at the location.
The blackspot on the first bend at Limerick Greyhound Track has been the location of career-ending injuries for prized dogs, Ashford Castle and Roxholme Bully.
However, the board in a statement yesterday said that the works on the bend has resulted in a “significant reduction” in race collisions on the first bend.
In February, last year the board denied work on the bend had anything to do with persistent animal welfare concerns at the facility.
Last October, a comptroller and auditor general report into the €21m stadium stated that the number of injuries to greyhounds since it commenced operation “was considered to be higher than normal”.
Responding to a written Dáil parliamentary question this week from Limerick TD Fianna Fáil Niall Collins, Minister for Agriculture, Simon Coveney said the work involved increasing the width of the bend and modification of the hare rail and had been completed.
Bord na gCon confirmed it had consulted with local greyhound owners and trainers to improve the existing design of the first bend at Limerick Greyhound Stadium.
The board said the line of the hare rail approaching the first bend had been altered and the width of the first bend was also increased.
“There has been a significant reduction in the number of racing collisions at this section of the track since the modifications,” it said.
On the specific costs, a Bord na gCon spokesman said IGB was not in a position to comment. Chairman of the Limerick and Clare Greyhound Owners, Patsy Coffey, said the works by Bord na gCon had resolved the problem.
“There were dogs getting injured at this first bend, but there is no issue now and the track is now a great galloping track for dogs,” he said.
The most recently filed accounts for the Limerick Greyhound Racing Track show it recorded pre-tax losses of €243,271 for 2013.
© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved