Wednesday, 27 February 2008
Ayr Racecourse adopts Irish theme for its March jumps meeting
By: Iain Ferguson
AYR Racecourse holds its two-day March meeting on Friday 7 March and Saturday 8 March with seven races on each day.
[Picture shows Dalwan, ridden by Kevin Tobin winning the Racing Post “Hands And Heels” Jump Series Handicap Hurdle at Ayr on 21 February.]
La Barrique Fine Wines sponsor the Friday card with the feature race the J20 Handicap Chase, a Class 3 event over three miles one furlong at 3.00pm. This should attract a decent entry with a first prize of almost £6000.
The Sunnycliff Wines Handicap Hurdle over two miles five and a half furlongs at 4.45pm is run for the James Barclay Challenge Trophy and a member of the Barclay family who have long standing connections with Ayr Racecourse will be on hand to present the trophy.
First race, The Bacardi Rum Conditional Jockeys Handicap Hurdle is off at 2.00pm with the final race, The Maclachlans Hunters Chase over two miles five furlongs at 5.20pm.
On Saturday its Allied Irish (GB) Raceday with the main race The Allied Irish (GB) Corporate Banking Handicap Chase over two miles at 3.55pm. This race carries £10,000 in prize money and is likely to be a competitive affair.
Another good contest will be The Allied Irish Bank (GB) Wealth Management Handicap Hurdle for the Ayrshire Yeomanry Cup. This two mile four furlong Class three contest over two miles four furlongs should see some decent hurdlers battle for the £4500 first prize.
Throughout the course on the day the bars will be Irish themed with bar staff wearing some form of Irish costume. Corporate Hospitality areas will also be Irish themed as will public food areas and restaurants.
An Irish band will be playing during the day, and there will be music from Irish bands - Saw Doctors, Pogues etc played on the PA before racing.
During the afternoon leading Irish trainers and jockeys will be interviewed about their prospercts at Cheltenham which is held the following week. And there will be a live band playing for three hours after the last race which is at 5.35pm.
Advance bookings can be made online at www.ayr-racecourse.co.uk or by calling 0870-8505666. Bars and restaurants open at 12 noon on Friday and at 12.15 on Saturday.
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