Horses for courses as Limerick wins at races

LEOPARDSTOWN might have lost up to €500,000 in revenue yesterday but Limerick Racecourse enjoyed one of its best meetings ever.

The cancellation of the big meeting at the famous course forced a number of racing enthusiasts to make a late dash to the Patrickswell track.

Day two of the big Dublin race meeting was cancelled yesterday morning because of water-logging.

“There were a number of parties who planned to go to Leopardstown and then decided to come here. It’s impossible to tell what exact effect the cancellation had on our numbers though,” course manager Angus Houston said.

Close to 8,000 people attended the Limerick meeting, a large increase on the same day last year.

Some €860,000 was gambled at Patrickswell with €138,000 diced on the fifth race alone.

“It was a great day’s racing and we’re looking forward to the next two days when we should have crowds of between 6,000 and 7,000,” Mr Houston said.

And RTÉ’s failure to televise the second day of the Limerick Races Christmas Festival following the Leopardstown cancellation was criticised by a leading member of the Irish Turf Club.

Gordon Holmes, also a director of Limerick Racecourse in Patrickswell, said while delighted with the large crowds on the opening two days of the first-ever four-day Christmas meeting, he was disappointed RTÉ did not send their cameras yesterday to Limerick for live coverage after Leopardstown was called off at 7am.

“It’s ironic the Limerick meeting is being carried by the Racing Channel, but not by RTÉ, and I wonder why,” said Mr Holmes as the big attendance enjoyed another good day’s racing.

Among the crowds was the Minister for Agriculture and Food Joe Walsh.

Tom Kane, owner of the Adare Manor Hotel, said: “This is a fantastic racecourse, one of the best in the country. We bring our guests and enjoy the whole craic.

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