Boylesports’ Irish Grand National Cancelled
by Glenn Baird - August 31, 2020
It was confirmed at the weekend that the highly anticipated Irish Grand National, sponsored by Boylesports, would not be going ahead this year.
There had been discussions over holding the event without a crowd or with limited numbers but in the end the decision was made to call the meet off.
This means that the prize money for the race will be carried over to two winter chases: the Ladbrokes Troytown at Navan on November 8 and the Bar One Porterstown Handicap Chase at Fairyhouse on November 29.
The outbreak of Covid 19 in March saw a halt to horse racing meets. Since then there have been races held, but all of them behind closed doors. With faces scheduled in for the rest of year there had been high hopes for an Irish Grand National, but now fans will need to wait until next year for the meet to take place.
Jason Morris, Director of Racing at HRI, commented: “The decision not to run the BoyleSports Irish Grand National was made to give owners and trainers as much notice as possible, and allows connections firm up their plans for the winter with some certainty. We feel it is appropriate to increase our support to two complementary staying handicap chases in November, and so the Ladbrokes Troytown Chase at Navan on November 8 and the Bar One Portertown Handicap Chase at Faiyhouse the week after, will both become races worth €125,000.”
Leon Blanche, Head of Communications with Irish Grand National sponsors BoyleSports, said: “The BoyleSports Irish Grand National is the greatest jumps race in the National Hunt calendar in Ireland, and the decision to postpone the 150th anniversary of the race is in the best interest of owners, trainers, jockeys, and the racing public. BoyleSports are fully committed to this iconic race and will continue to sponsor the people’s race up to 2024.”
Peter Roe, General Manager of Fairyhouse Racecourse said: “The BoyleSports Irish Grand National is known by many as the ‘People’s Race’ so to stage the race at Fairyhouse without that huge community of locals and racing fans, just wouldn’t feel the same. I know that the race will return as big as ever in 2021 and would like to sincerely thank BoyleSports for their loyal support of the race.
“I’m delighted to see that the Bar One Porterstown Handicap Chase, which features on an incredible day’s racing here on November 29, with three Grade 1s alongside it, will benefit from a prizemoney boost.”
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