THE extra Monday afternoon meeting at Dundalk was abandoned after just one race with freezing fog causing very poor visibility and making conditions extremely difficult for riders.

Even with cameras around the track it was virtually impossible to see any of the action in the opening juvenile fillies’ maiden, with viewers just getting a brief glimpse of the runners on the approach to the straight and again in the final 50 yards.

Clerk of the Course Lorcan Wyer explained the series of events which led to the abandonment saying: “Before racing we followed the fog protocol. We consulted with riders, trainers, the judge, doctors, vets and everybody was happy to start the meeting.

“After race one the riders were concerned about the effect the freezing fog was having on their goggles. Even with two pairs of goggles their visibility was really impaired after going a short distance and they obviously can’t ride here without goggles due to the kickback. They brought their concerns to us and ultimately the stewards made the decision.

Dundalk Manager Jim Martin said: “Admission was free in today sponsored by Bar One Racing and it’s disappointing, but safety is paramount.

“As Lorcan said everyone was happy to race but it has got worse and the freezing fog has made it difficult for the jockeys.”


La Tulipe Noire caused something of a surprise in the only race to take place, the Irish Stallion Farms EBF (Fillies) Maiden, with Declan McDonogh’s mount making most and keeping on well under pressure to hold off 11/8 favourite Den Of Iniquity by a neck.

McDonogh said: “I was drawn a bit wide. She didn’t jump too quick but I made her go up and go forward. She’s lazy and had the blinkers on her for a reason. She pulled out plenty up the straight. I just had to make up her mind for her.”

The former champion jockey commented on the conditions saying, “It’s very hard to see around there. The lads were giving out pulling up that they couldn’t see anything. I was in front most of the way and was just following the rail but the boys in behind were saying that they couldn’t see a thing. They were pulling down goggles and wiping goggles.

“The fog seems to be rising and falling as we are going along. It’s fine when you win but the lads in behind weren’t too impressed pulling up.”

The Berkshire filly is trained for Magette Meagher by Ciaran Murphy who said: “She had the bit of experience compared to some of them. She was unlucky not to win with Siobhan (Rutledge) in Down Royal earlier in the year.

“In fairness, Declan was strong on her today. That was his plan, he was going to get out and use her experience and you know the strength of him when he gets behind one.

“She did nothing wrong the last day, she just got in behind horses and just didn’t get out and wasn’t beaten far.

“It’s lovely to have another two-year-old winner for us as they have been going nicely.”