AN elegant new entrance at Killarney Racecourse has been officially unveiled as part of the bi-centenary celebrations programme. Minister for Education Norma Foley did the honours.
The project started way back in November 2020 and its completion was hindered by the Covid-19 pandemic, increased costs and availability of materials. The development has been partially grant assisted by Horse Racing Ireland’s capital development fund.
Track chairman Gerard Coughlan commented: “It’s a great honour as chairman to mark this historic and momentous occasion as we celebrate 200 years of racing in Killarney and unveil this magnificent new entrance.
“Racing in Killarney dates back to 1822 prior to establishing itself in 1936 in our current location which is now widely renowned as the most scenic racetrack in Ireland.
“Over the years there have been many famous people as well as some very high-class racehorses through our gates. Many high-profile jockeys have ridden at our track including the late great Lester Piggott, and Frankie Dettori.
“The race company is deeply indebted to all our sponsors who generously contributed and supported the growth and development of Killarney Racecourse over the years, which has allowed us to grow our racing calendar to 13 superb race fixtures per annum.
“We are also most grateful for the tremendous support of our very loyal patrons who have frequented Killarney Races over the years.
“I would also like to thank all management and staff, current and past and my fellow directors for their vision, enthusiasm, and dedication to establishing Killarney as one of the leading racetracks in the country.”
A special note of thanks from the board of Killarney Racecourse went to Liam Sugrue of Farnes Construction and his team, engineer, Ian Brosnan of Malachy Walsh and Partners, Brendan Williams, architect, Sapphire Signs, Anita Barber, landscaper and Kerry County Council engineers John Ahern and Stephan Sheehan.
Minister Norma Foley TD said: “Killarney Racecourse plays an important role here in the town and surrounding areas. The positive economic impact of their 13 racing fixtures per annum combined with the many events held here throughout the year and the golf course activity is a major boost to local businesses in particular the hospitality sector.”