100,000 racegoers expected to attend Christmas meetings

Wet weather conditons not likely to interfere with the four-day festival period

Weather conditions are not expected to interfere with plans for over 100,000 racegoers during the four-day Christmas festival period.

Almost 55,000 are expected to attend Leopardstown with over 40,000 predicted for Limerick. There is also racing in Down Royal on St Stephen's Day which is the busiest day of the racing year in Ireland.

Ground conditions are softest in Limerick where the going is currently “soft to heavy” but no problems are anticipated at the track.

‘No rain’

“The forecast for the actual four days is for no rain at all so I’ve no doubt we’ll get through them,” said Limerick’s manager, Conor O’Neill. “We’re hoping over 40,000 people will come here, with about 12,000 on St Stephens Day.”


Leopardstown's chief executive Pat Keogh said: "We expect in excess of 55,000 people and whilst growing the numbers is important, our main focus is to ensure that those that come enjoy an experience that will bring them back again. It looks like the weather will behave so we're all set for four days to remember."

There are eight cross-channel meetings on Monday, including Kempton’s King George VI Chase card.

Irish interest there is confined to the Tony Martin-trained Anibale Fly in the Grade One Kauto Star Novices Chase

Brian O'Connor

Brian O'Connor

Brian O'Connor is the racing correspondent of The Irish Times. He also writes the Tipping Point column