Top 5 Racing Events in Ireland

Horse racing is one of the biggest sports in Ireland with millions of spectators and punters flocking to racecourses each year to place their wagers on their Irish race tips. Ireland has also produced some of the world’s best jockeys, trainers and horses such as Arkle, Dawn Run, Ruby Walsh and Willie Mullins and the country features 26 racecourses that host some of the biggest races throughout the year.

Below, we’ve listed five of the top racing events that take place in Ireland.

Punchestown Festival

The Punchestown Festival is one of the highlights of the Irish racing calendar and takes place at Punchestown Racecourse, County Kildare.

The festival is considered to be the Irish equivalent of the Cheltenham Festival and is held over five days iApril of each year.

Some notable races at the festival include the Champion Chase, Ryanair Novice Chase, Champion Hurdle, Tattersalls Ireland Champion Novice Hurdle and the Punchestown Gold Cup.

Irish Derby Festival – The Curragh

The Irish Derby Festival is one of the most prestigious racing events in Ireland with several high-profile names attending annually.

The festival is held over three days in June at the Curragh Racecourse near Dublin and features the Irish Derby on the Saturday which has the biggest prize money in Irish racing.

Similar to Cheltenham, the festival provides a lot more than horse racing with music, food and entertainment on offer adding to the appeal of a great day out for all attendees.

Galway Summer Festival

The Galway Festival takes place annually on the last Monday in July and is held at Ballybrit Racecourse in Galway. The festival is longer than others in Ireland with it taking place over seven days.

There’s plenty of entertainment and activities for all of the family and for racing fans, the most popular days are Ladies’ Day on the Thursday which features the Galway Hurdle and the Wednesday featuring the Galway Plate.

Fairyhouse Easter Festival

Host to the Irish Grand National, the Easter Festival at Fairyhouse Racecourse in County Meath is a popular destination for many parties over the Easter weekend.

Easter Monday features the Irish Grand National which is the richest chase in Irish racing but there is also racing to enjoy on both the Saturday with a €100,000 Handicap Hurdle and the Sunday with entertainment, music, festivities, food and glamour.

Listowel Festival

Similar to the Galway Summer Festival, the Harvest Festival at Listowel takes place over seven days and is considered the autumn highlight of the Irish racing calendar.

Ladies’ Day draws in the biggest crowds at the festival but racing fans look forward to the Guinness Kerry National Day on the Wednesday which features the Guinness Kerry National Handicap Chase.

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