Fairyhouse scaled

Revamping racing fest mulled

A view of a race at Fairyhouse in December. INPHO/LASZLO GECKZO

Rescheduling the 2020 Irish Grand National to the Friday of a revamped three-day “Winter Festival” at Fairyhouse in late November is one potential option being examined for Ireland’s richest jumps race. The €500,000 contest is synonymous with Easter Monday, but was cancelled on its traditional date due to the coronavirus pandemic. Horse Racing Ireland has opted to try and run the race in the final quarter of this year as part of an enhanced program of National Hunt action in the autumn. Horse Racing Ireland CEO Brian Kavanagh said: “There are a few races in the program for horses in the three-mile category; this is three miles and five furlongs. It is a unique race. We will try to run it. It is an important race and there’s a fair amount of prize money to spread out into the system.’’

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-- Sean Creedon