UP to 40,000 racegoers are set to throng the enclosures at Limerick Racecourse for the four-day Shannon Airport Christmas Festival of Racing which gets underway on St Stephen’s Day.
The Festival, which will boast more than €300,000 in prizemoney, will feature 28 races between December 26 and 29 at Greenmount Park.
The event is the biggest racing festival staged in Munster each year and is one of the major annual highlights of the local sporting and social calendar.
The feature race on the opening afternoon of the Festival, St Stephen’s Day, is the Grade 2 €39,000 Shannon Airport Novice Steeplechase.
December 26 is traditionally the busiest day of the Festival. Attendances of more than 12,000 have flocked to Limerick Racecourse for the opening day of the National Hunt racing bonanza in recent years.
In a major boost for the festival this year, RTE will broadcast the feature race from Limerick on each of the four days of the fixture.
Racecourse general manager Conor O’Neill said the long range weather forecast for the Festival is favourable.
Conor O’Neill said: “The aim this year is to be in excess of 40,000 attendance wise over the four days. We would hope to build that figure year on year. We are shaping up to be bigger and better than ever. It’s all systems go here at Limerick Racecourse.”
The first race is due off at 12.30pm on St Stephen’s Day and 12.35pm on each of the three subsequent days
Log onto www.limerickraces.ie for further details on Limerick’s Christmas Racing Festival.