Fairyhouse in doubt due to weather
Racing:Sunday’s meeting at Fairyhouse will have to pass an inspection on Saturday if it is to go ahead. Officials will hold an inspection at 2pm tomorrow after heavy overnight rain hit the Co Meath track.
Horse Racing Ireland tweeted: “Fairyhouse heavy (12mm rain overnight). Track inspection to be held Saturday afternoon.”
Ireland has escaped the worst of the wintry weather in recent days with race meetings across the Irish Sea falling foul of the cold snap. Taunton’s richest ever meeting on Saturday could be the best chance of any turf racing going ahead over the next few days in Britain.
Temperatures in Somerset were fairly tropical compared to most of the rest of the country, but even they are not completely safe, with a band of either snow or rain moving in.
Ascot’s meeting, which features Sprinter Sacre’s return in the Grade One Victor Chandler Chase, will need to survive a 4.30pm inspection this afternoon, but snow is forecast. Clerk of the course Chris Stickels said: “There are some signs of frost under the covers.
“I’m pretty confident we could race (on Thursday) but could not be certain unless I lifted the covers right off. It is due to remain cold, although maybe not minus 4C again.
“Snow is forecast for Friday afternoon and evening, so it makes sense to have a precautionary look on Friday when we’ll have a good look under the covers and we’ll be able to assess the snow situation.”
Haydock’s meeting on Saturday, which is due to stage the Peter Marsh Chase and a Champion Hurdle Trial, is in grave doubt. And today’s meeting at Musselburgh was abandoned yesterday morning, while this afternoon’s meeting at Chepstow was also cancelled due to snow.
Clerk of the course Keith Ottesen had planned to inspect the track at 8am but was able to make a decision much earlier than scheduled.
Towcester’s meeting on Sunday has already been abandoned.