Limerick Greyhound Stadium
WEEKLY Friday night racing is no more in Limerick Greyhound Stadium.
Thursday and Saturday are to be the designated nights of racing in Limerick Greyhound Stadium going forward – just as they were back in the days of the Markets Field.
The move from Friday to Thursday evening racing from this week is part of a new broadcasting deal agreed between the Irish Greyhound Board (IGB) and SIS (Sports Information Services).
This new agreement will see live racing from Limerick broadcast to thousands of retail betting shops in the UK and Spain. The deal was struck late last week and also includes live racing from the Cork tracks - Curraheen Park and Youghal.
The move has the backing of the Limerick and Clare GOBA.
“We fully support this change. The SIS deal will deliver better prize money for local greyhound owners and it’s very exciting to think that our live racing will be watched worldwide. We have a good pool of greyhounds and we offer some very competitive racing,” said Austin Noonan of the Limerick and Clare Greyhound Owners and Breeders Association.
The new agreement is in line with the IGB’s Strategic Plan 2018-2022 which focuses on securing international business and investing in new technology. The agreement will improve the financial sustainability of the tracks while also delivering a local increase in prize money for greyhound owners and trainers, said an IGB statement confirming the switch.
“Thursday is the new Friday night for us. In that sense, the weekend begins earlier but we will still have our Saturday night racing. It’s a positive for the stadium and greyhound owners have reacted very positively,” said Limerick Racing Manager Liam Kennedy.
“This agreement with SIS - a leading supplier to the online and retail betting markets - demonstrates the demand that exists for Irish greyhound racing internationally. Ireland produces some of the world’s best greyhounds thanks to the quality of the bloodstock and Irish greyhound racing can become a global sporting product,” explained Kennedy.
Restaurant packages have also been reviewed with Thursday night dinner starting at €19.95 per person and €27.95 per person on Saturdays.
The last of the weekly Friday night cards was on July 20.
Cratloe’s Harry and Maurice Galvin had joy in the opening race of the night. The N1 525 was won in 29.54 and by half a length by Upland Warrior. Beaten into second was Keeperhill Louis for Barbara Rees Jones.
Kilmallock’s John Lyons won with Canavour Harry in an A9 525. In 30-seconds the Julie O’Connell trained winner had four lengths to spare on the line. Declan Murphy, Knocklong, was second with Erins Friend.
Joe Williams of Rathkeale had Kyletaun Hero as a sprint winner. In 19.43 the winner was four and a half lengths clear of Croker Joker for Fintan Flavin of Kilmallock.
Breda Hayes, Oola, had Orlando Amelia as an A6 525 winner. There were two lengths to spare in 29.50. Second was Keeperhill Kirby – another for Newport’s Barbara Rees Jones and owner Nicholas Colton.
Another Oola winner was Matthysse. The A4 525 was won in 29.51 by the Paudie Ryan trained and Declan Beary owned runner. Just beaten on the line was Excess Weight.
Askeaton’s Joe Sheahan had Bobs Other as a sprint winner. In 19.25 the winner was six and a half lengths clear on the line. Brid and James McMahon were second with Offshore Beam.
Another local winner was Croom’s Michael Carmody with Honeypound Champ. The A8 525 was won in 29.57. A length back in second was another Rees Jones runner; Keeperhill James.
There was a S2/S3 350 win for Jasons Perl for Noel Power of Ballyduff. In 18.86 the winner had a length to spare on the line. Second was Ballymartin Ron for Sean Roche and Patrick Keyes.
The Eamonn Quinn trained Da Belles Chancer won an A7 525 in 29.41. Owned by the Maud and the Blowins syndicate, the winner had eight lengths to spare on the line. Second was Hazelhill Flash for Michael O’Connell of Askeaton.
Doing It For Fiadh won for Sean and Fiadh Bowen of Carrignavar in a S5 350. The winner had a length to spare in 19.21. Second was Glin’s Joan Cregan with Bettyville Ivy.
The last race of the Friday card went to Caherconlish’s Seamus and John Rainsford with Adamant Kenny in an A3 525.
The winner’s time was 29.27. Three lengths back in second was Sharon Be Slick for Thomas Gallagher of Cooraclare of west Clare.
This Saturday there will be three finals on the card in Limerick – the Speedrite Senorita A4 Dual Distance 525/550 and the Speedrite Senor A4 Dual Distance 525/550 – both over 525 - along with the Limerick Summer Stayers A2 Tri Distance, which will be run over 600.