With the Irish Winters becoming increasingly harsh and the turf racecourses at this time being most at the mercy of the elements, Dundalk Stadium is delighted to provide a continuation of Irish Flat racing with a winter series running from November 2015/2016.
Dundalk Stadium’s polytrack surface provided a standard surface for trainers in the harsh winter of 2010 to continue galloping horses whilst 17 days passed in the National Hunt calendar and abandonments continued thereafter. With so many meetings abandoned the only consistent track was Dundalk Stadium’s all-weather surface and with the support of SIS and The Irish Bookmakers Association, Dundalk was able to present a case which was finally passed allowing for an inaugural winter series in November 2011.
The winter series is now in its 3rd year; with a commitment from HRI that the series will continue up to and including the winter season of 2016/2017.
Racing will take place at Dundalk every Friday evening between 25th September 2015 and 18th March 2016 (except December 25th 2015 & January 1st 2016). The ‘winter series’ came into effect from Friday 6th November 2013; an additional 14 fixtures during the winter.
These fixtures have been added to Dundalk Stadium’s previous annual allocation of 23 race meetings, and the costs will be financed by contributions from SIS, the broadcast rights holder for live Irish racing to betting shops, and Dundalk Stadium, which has ensured that the €7,000 minimum value per race has been upheld.
The Dundalk Friday evening winter series:
Jim Martin, CEO, Dundalk Stadium, said: “We are delighted to be in a position to provide an extension of the flat season which has been widely received by the Flat Racing and bookmaking industry in Ireland. This has only been viable given the generous support of SIS and support of Dundalk Stadium in order to fund these additional 14 fixtures providing a consistent weekly racing product throughout the winter season.”
Phil Siers, Managing Director, SIS LBO Division, said: “SIS is delighted with the extension to the fixture list as it offers our bookmaker customers better continuity and a cohesive winter program, offering us better all weather coverage on these busy Fridays. This will give Irish betting shops an additional 14 days of winter evening opening.”