Poker Party and Rachael Blackmore win the 2019 Guinness Kerry National. The 2020 Listowel Harvest Festival will take place behind closed doors from September 20 to 26 Photo: Patrick McCann/Racing Post
FOLLOWING a Committee meeting of Listowel Race Company this week, and in consultation with Horse Racing Ireland, the decision has been made to run September’s Listowel Harvest Festival behind closed doors.
The seven-day festival, featuring the Guinness Kerry National takes place from Sunday, September 20 to Saturday, September 26.
Pat Healy, Chairman of Listowel Race Company, said: “In these unprecedented times, and in line with Government guidelines, the Listowel Race Company has made the extremely difficult decision to race behind closed doors, this means the event will not be open to the general public this year.
The health and safety of everyone is our number one priority and with crowd restrictions in place, it would be very difficult for us to run the festival, as it attracts significant numbers of visitors to Listowel each year.
“Making the announcement now, gives all of our valued patrons notice, with regard to travel plans and accommodation bookings.
"We would hope that the flavour of the Harvest Festival will still be in the town and that our local shops will continue to decorate their windows with a racing theme. TG4 will be broadcasting six days Monday to Saturday and we are delighted with their continued support, which will bring racing into every home in the country.
“We would also like to acknowledge and thank the residents and business community of Listowel for their contribution to the Festival down through the years and already look forward to welcoming everyone back in 2021.”
Customers who have already paid for admission tickets will receive a full refund in the next two weeks.
More information is available at www.listowelraces.ie or contact Listowel Races Secretary, Brenda Daly, Tel: 068 21172.