Irish Sports

Welcome to Live View – Take the tour to learn more
Start Tour
There is currently 1 person viewing this thread.
31 Jan 18 18:02
Date Joined: 26 Dec 00
| Topic/replies: 12,552 | Blogger: foxy's blog
Wrote an article in today’s post ,what a bundle of fun he seems
Pause Switch to Standard View Dublin festival Alan sweetman
Show More
Report cloone river January 31, 2018 10:10 PM GMT
What did he say foxy?
Report foxy February 1, 2018 9:51 AM GMT
thats a very negative article never mind his opening line,his comments about only well heeled people coming from the uk is miles out ,i know many who are making the trip and they are simply people who enjoy good racing and a good time,his comments about hotels shows he must never have set foot in the uk where we are the world champions at over priced and over rated hotels,why bang on about the curragh it has no relevance to this weekend.his comments about the topics talked about in the betting shops shows that he himself must just be a betting shop punter no disrespect to them but they are not interested in horse racing just gambling shouting at televisions and blaming others when they do there money.

i did however agree with him about no hunter chase they could have fitted one in on saturday.
Report RoyalAcademy February 1, 2018 10:43 AM GMT
I agree with a lot of what he says.

There are two distinct lines of reasoning about racecourse attendances in Ireland at present and the one I disagree with is that attendance figures are not all that relevant any more. The preferred metric is how many stay-at-home fans there are that engage about the sport everywhere except the racetrack. The Keogh comment that he is hoping for "north of 25,000" is a case in point-its wing-and-a-prayer stuff aided by a fortune investedg by HRI's marketing department. Attendance figures in Ireland are dreadful at the moment yet we claim that it is the second-most popular spectator sport with 1.3m attendees: this is utter drivel. The only measurement that counts is how many paying guests turn up and that figure is a long was below 1.3m; my guess is that its less than 0.5m souls.

Who knows what the ticketing arrangements will be this weekend? It is good to see foxy's enthusiasm but I think the Irish context referred to by AS is very relevant. I will pose one question: if there was a "poor man's" Danoli or Limestone Lad or Beef Or Salmon running this weekend as against a virtual monopolistic ownership of all the top racehorses by the chosen few which would attract a massive attendance? In my view, with the latter situation prevailing, people just can't be bothered any more. I recall a day many years ago at the Curragh as M.V.O'Brien welcomed home yet another 2yo winner there was a cry from beside the parade ring: "More apples for the orchard, Vincent." Plus ca change.
Report foxy February 1, 2018 10:48 AM GMT
premier sold out both days royal academy.
Report foxy February 1, 2018 10:54 AM GMT
the attendences over here are not very good never mind the spin put on from the bha,the last 3 fixtures at haydock on saturdays have be woeful and thats in a good catchment area,midweek national hunt are getting very poor crowds which is understanding due to the poor fields and cost,at least in ireland its cheap to go racing.
Report foxy February 1, 2018 1:41 PM GMT
Good afternoon Alans

Thank you for taking the time to reply,the well heeled bit I didn’t find offensive just in accurate but after spending a bit of time in your city these last few winters I do agree you live in an expensive one but one no different to London and Stratford.

The politics of Irish racing regarding the increase in betting tax I know nothing about.

Grade ones in Ireland seem to hold up much better than in the uk and I don’t see the problem with who owns them and from what I see both jp and gigginstown are a huge asset to national hunt racing in Ireland,not sure about the other fella,I don’t have a problem if a 7 runner grade one or a big handicap is dominated by the colours of maroon and white or green and gold.

Regarding the lack of targeting local people then of course that is poor and surprising although as premier is sold out both days they must have done something right.

I remember when we first had champions day at ascot in 2011 there was so much doom and gloom from the press regarding timing and weather ,it’s been a huge success ok they got wonderful weather the first year and frankel for the first two years,this weekend the weather looks like been kind and on Saturday you have the likes of faugheen and petit mouchoir fingers crossed plus many other very good horses,I don’t include veinard in that although as ever I will make a donation to the bookmakers,Sunday could be even better.

You are very lucky in Ireland to have such wonderful racecourses and so many good national hunt horses I still fun to go racing and very cheap,I just get the feeling many over there don’t appreciate what you have,this weekend will be my first visit to Leopardstown and it’s just like I felt back in the 80s and 90s when Cheltenham was looming it’s going to me a magical two days and there’s only two more sleeps to go.

Good luck

Report foxy April 23, 2018 5:36 PM BST
Having criticised Alan s on his article prior to the Dublin festival I have to say I enjoyed today’s article named land of the giants I presume with sprinter sacre not getting in the top ten it was just Irish horses,
Report alans April 24, 2018 1:07 PM BST
Yes foxy, plead guilty to home-team refereeing! Hope you have a profitable week.
Report foxy April 25, 2018 11:50 AM BST
thanks alans good luck to you
Report foxy April 25, 2018 12:13 PM BST
come to think of it if you did the article after this years fixture you may well have had to have left one out to be replaced by un de sceaux.

Report foxy April 25, 2018 12:13 PM BST
ha should say hailstone as i write.
Report Catch Me ifyoucan February 3, 2019 2:52 PM GMT
What’s the verdict this year?
Report foxy February 4, 2019 9:06 AM GMT
Obviously although nobody’s fault the racing wasn’t as good as last year when the declarations came out on Friday I thought Saturday was a good card and Sunday was an exceptional card,sadly Sunday’s card was decimated some of the most interesting runners for various reason which me and many other race goers were pulled out which was a massive disappointment,I was looking forward to seeing monalee and al boum photo in particular in the gold cup ,I felt the racecourse hadn’t moved on from last years first running the toilet situation seemed worse and part of the viewing area at the parade ring was closed which caused overcrowding. From a personal point of view I was made up at seeing both apples jade and hardy eustace in the same parade ring and of course the performance on the track by apples jade was sensational (for the 3 rd time this season) I doubt the fixture will throw up as many festival winners as last seasons and all in all it enjoyed last seasons more that said I already look forward to next year when surely the combination of low sun and firm ground appearing in the going description won’t strike again.

On another note for an all in race day experience thyestes day tops the lot.
Report Catch Me ifyoucan December 1, 2019 11:23 PM GMT
The total attendance at Fairyhouse was up on both days this weekend... some credit must go to Barney O’Hare at Bar One Racing for his continued sponsorship.

.....Saturday 3,190 (+605 from last year 2,585).....Sunday 6,782 (+356 from last year 6,426).
Report workrider December 2, 2019 1:51 PM GMT
Looked like a lot more to my eye, it was back to back cars from the Avoca, last time it was like that was 1991 when Dessie ran in the National, I had to park to the exit it was that packed..
Report Catch Me ifyoucan December 27, 2019 7:21 PM GMT
Hot on the heels of more than 14,000 patrons flocking to Greenmount Park on St Stephen's Day - some crowd to see FAUGHEEN - traditionally the best-attended of the four days - an impressive 11,329 racegoers came through the turnstiles on day two
Report workrider December 27, 2019 11:30 PM GMT
Yes Catch , a wonderful shot as they passed the post first time around , place seemed to be buzzing, as I have often asked where do these people disappear to the rest of the year...
Report foxy January 22, 2020 3:51 PM GMT
Excellent write up by alans in today’s post .
Report cloone river January 29, 2020 9:19 PM GMT
Good write up in todays racingpost about Chosen mates run at Fairyhouse.
Report foxy January 30, 2020 12:11 PM GMT
Saturdays final grade one fields are in and they are as good as you could hope for ,at last we have a fabulous Dublin Chase and the Irish arkle is simply sensational,let’s hope the sun doesn’t shine to much.
Report foxy February 4, 2020 9:35 AM GMT
The best Dublin festival yet even if the above two races mentioned lost very significant players,all 15 races were interesting and we saw some terrific finishes and a few outstanding performances,a great atmosphere throughout especially when faugheen won,already looking forward to year four with the new facilities completed all in all a magnificent success the only people who don’t seem to like it are those who have never been.
Report foxy February 4, 2020 9:47 AM GMT
To the best of my knowledge no fatalities and only 10 fallers from 197 runners obviously a shame about jack Kennedy wins the gold cup then breaks a leg that’s racing.
Report foxy February 10, 2020 12:09 PM GMT
I hear the new man in charge is thinking of going Friday/ Saturday hopefully the Irish racing press can suggest to him what a ridiculous idea that would be.
Report olddesperado February 10, 2020 1:10 PM GMT
As with everything foxy it's all about money.

The reason to do that would be to make it easier in a few years to add a 3rd day (sunday).

It works perfectly well as it is with some big guns having to take each other on but adding more races brings it into the cheltenham scenario of dilution of each race with odds on favs every other race.

No thanks.
Report cloone river February 10, 2020 3:10 PM GMT
Why they use the inside hurdle track for the 2 days is beyond me.The outside track is better jumping ground and fairer.
Report foxy February 10, 2020 3:46 PM GMT
From a spectator point of view cloone it has to be better viewing also.


Absolutely right it works perfectly well as it is ,loads attend the fixture from the uk not sure how many could do the Friday.
Report Catch Me ifyoucan February 11, 2020 9:37 PM GMT
Report cloone river March 14, 2020 10:31 PM GMT
Nice to see chosen mate handle the soft ground at cheltenham and given a great ride.Well done to all.
Report foxy August 26, 2021 10:16 AM BST
Good article today by Alan sweetman

Here’s my take on it,as a racegoer I enjoy my trips over to Ireland and was doing around 50/60 days a year until the pandemic arrived,last year of course I had many proposed trips cancelled which is obviously understandable.

However we are now less than a month away from listowel I have accommodation booked but no travel booked due to the uncertainty,I have retained my tickets from last seasons Dublin festival to be used this season but cannot be confident of booking travel or accommodation,only on Monday I tried to book tickets for the two day bellewstown fixture at the end of September only to find only the first day tickets are available I emailed them my reply was just keep checking the website,the curragh the previous Sunday no tickets available yet this racegoer may well end up getting fed up with the uncertainty and just go racing over here now I realise just two people from England won’t make much difference to attendance figures in Ireland but who knows other may also take the same view.

Such a shame as the all round product and cost in Ireland is excellent
Report olddesperado August 26, 2021 10:56 AM BST
It's a total balls up foxy,

Not just racing but everything entertainment wise is fecked with politicians contradicting themselves on a daily basis.
Report foxy August 26, 2021 1:44 PM BST
Yes olddesperado I understand it’s not the fault of the racecourses however I did think bellewstown could have been more helpful,I will still get there at some stage as it’s one of the five I am yet to do but if it wasn’t I doubt I would trouble them again.
Report workrider September 1, 2021 10:20 PM BST
Foxy standing outside at Bellewstown is nearly as good as inside..
Report foxy September 3, 2021 9:06 AM BST
Thanks workrider

Are the Irish racecourses interested or not in getting people through the turnstiles what a farce it’s become on Tuesday crowd restrictions were improved yet week commencing 26th September

Curragh no tickets available due to 500 capacity
Roscommon tickets available
Bellewstown tickets available Wednesday but not Thursday
Gowran Park Friday Saturday no tickets available due to crowd restrictions of 500

Have the government given the racecourses to much money that they don’t care if racegoers return or not I know they say they want crowds back but looking at there online information it certainly doesn’t look like that.

Listowel 2000 a day champions weekend 4000 a day what on Earth is going on over there
Report workrider September 7, 2021 10:28 AM BST
Tried to get tickets for Galways 2 day meeting this week , filled in the application form but as soon as I tried to click pay it reverted back to the start . Spent ages trying to rectify it to no avail finally gave up. A complete and utter shambles and no one seems to care, you could be right Foxy the Government gave them too much money to stay closed now they don't give a damn about their customers..
Report foxy September 7, 2021 9:39 PM BST
Bellewstown very helpful in the end workrider all tickets sorted curragh came back to me today will be sorted within 48 hours,we have given up on Gowran both days as transport and accommodation needed sorting out ,so there’s 4 entrance tickets plus 2 nights accommodation plus food drink etc gone from the Irish economy,I know that won’t make much difference on a bigger scale.

Car hire has trebled in price since pre covid flights also more expensive but as we are unable to go on the Saturday it rules the ferry out but looking ahead it will be the ferry in future on a longish trip.

All of a sudden the simplicity and relatively low cost of racing in Ireland has changed .
Report workrider September 7, 2021 10:35 PM BST
Just stated the same to a journo in the Irish Field they said they would but it in print soon , no OAP discount since covid etc, I have to say the cost of going racing in U.K. I.E. hotels have gone through the roof but I'm still making the journey..Will I see you at the following any day. 29th Bangor Redcar  Hexham Newcastle same day btw Kelso on the Sunday.
Report cloone river September 8, 2021 10:24 PM BST
Last week the government outlined their latest roadmap in the fight against Covid and from today organised outdoor sporting events can increase their capacity up to a maximum of 75% if all attendees have been double vaccinated or have recovered from Covid in the last 6 months.

This currently accounts for 88% of the adult population of Ireland and any normal business would jump at the opportunity to open back up to the largest possible number of customers and start to recoup the losses of the previous 18 months, but not horse racing.

With just two major festivals remaining in the season it has been announced that these will continue to have severely curtailed crowd numbers. Irish Champions Weekend taking place at Leopardstown and the Curragh next weekend will be restricted to 4,000 spectators a day while the 7-day Listowel Harvest Festival later this month will have only 2,000 in attendance each day.

This is extremely disappointing news and for once we cannot blame either NPHET or the government for these restrictions. This decision is solely down to HRI and the racecourses.

Maybe the racing authorities are suffering from a bout of agoraphobia but it’s certainly a shock that an industry that had made submissions to government for 5,000 spectators at each of the above mentioned events should then restrict themselves to smaller numbers when the new government advice clearly allows for many more people.

The racing industry claims it’s always looking for new ways to engage with a wider audience and broaden the appeal of the sport. Re-opening the doors would be a good place to start.
Racecourses are still getting goverment supports and it looks like they are not in a rush to get the putters back.Its about time people started asking questions and maybe our good racing journos can start writing about it.Wink
Report cloone river September 8, 2021 11:07 PM BST
Punters that should be.Had one two many.
Report foxy September 9, 2021 4:13 PM BST
Great post cloone Gowran has lost two paying customers for that week as they are showing no interest in selling tickets ,it’s not ideal over here some tracks are card only throughout which is driving punters away ,it seems they haven’t realised not everyone wants there partners or bank managers knowing the ins and outs of everything they do but of course these places are run by well educated people who know very little about the real world.

Shame about Gowran as ,as workrider knows all in its my favourite racecourse.

Workrider when you are over here at bangor a track I seldom miss I am over there starting of at the curragh on the Sunday then back over for Sligo through to down royal so should catch up that week.
Report ambush September 9, 2021 10:32 PM BST
foxy be far as im aware, sligo has no paying customers for remaining 2 meeting, only allowing members and 1 guest,
Report foxy September 10, 2021 7:24 AM BST
Good morning ambush

Thank you for pointing that out to me I would never have given it a thought 5 weeks further down the line I would have just thought they would be wanting to see the paying public back,I have now looked on line and as you say no paying customers.

I keep reading and hearing hri and wanting to increase the interest in horse racing perhaps they should mention it to some of the racecourses over there once again thank you for pointing it out .

Good luck and take care
Report freddiewilliams September 24, 2021 3:07 PM BST
Did u make it to listowel foxy
Report foxy September 27, 2021 5:22 PM BST
No Freddie didn’t go with all the restrictions waited instead for this week ,the curragh yesterday just back from Roscommon weather much better than the forecasters predicted,good crowd there today .
Report workrider September 27, 2021 10:05 PM BST
Fecking heck were you in the Curragh yesterday ?...
Report foxy September 28, 2021 10:34 AM BST
Yes workrider I saw you in the coffee and cake cafe you were talking to somebody so I didn’t interrupt ,just thought I would bump into you later,

My first visit to the curragh since the first Sunday derby back in 88 what an amazing difference I can’t believe the negative comments about the place it’s absolutely stunning you have a world class racecourse and I only saw it on a quiet and miserable day weather wise ,what it must be like in the summer I can only imagine however it won’t be long till I find out.
Report freddiewilliams September 28, 2021 1:25 PM BST
Was at listowel. They let people use tickets in someone's else's name as long as they wrote there name and number on it
Report freddiewilliams September 28, 2021 1:26 PM BST
U going bellewstown
Report foxy September 28, 2021 1:47 PM BST
Yes Freddie both days
Report JayTrumpOldTomDubbl September 29, 2021 12:01 AM BST
Do you remember foxy what won that first Sunday derby ? Maybe without checking was it Willie Carson on Salsabil, maybe not either. Workrider will know anyways. Yes I agree with your Curragh comments. An
amazing turnaround. I was there many the time in old days. I remember being there in 2014 when Michael Owen won the Leger. We were with some folks that had paid a ransom for a box. You could not call it a corporate box.
A rust-box would be a much closer description. Michael Owen and his crew,  and then Coolmore crew were further down than us. But just rust-boxes as well. It was embarrassing. It really needed a make-over. They did a good job but I heard it said high winds were an issue. Anyways foxy glad you enjoyed it. Its a fabulous place now. Lets hope they get the big crowds back which is not a certainty.
Report foxy September 29, 2021 7:38 AM BST
Good morning jay

The first Sunday derby was kayhasi who beat insan of Paul coles in a very tight finish ,Richard Quinn lost his whip close to the end of the race,salsabil was 1990 the same day as England beat Cameroon in the World Cup semi final.

I always thought that was the start of Quinn losing his job with the owner salman

Regarding the curragh an amazing turnaround is an accurate description.
Post Your Reply
<CTRL+Enter> to submit
Please login to post a reply.


Instance ID: 13539