Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Relief to Be Ready for off at Weekend

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Relief to Be Ready for off at Weekend

Article excerpt

Byline: JAMES ARMSTRONG

WE'RE breathing a huge sigh of relief here at Newcastle after getting confirmation that we are raceable for Sunday's Family Countryside Raceday. The event, organised in conjunction with the Countryside Alliance, will be a great opportunity to spend time with the family celebrating all that's great about the countryside.

There will be displays and activities taking place throughout the afternoon, including birds of prey, terrier racing and sheepdog trials, and not forgetting top racing action.

And, after the disappointment earlier this week when we had to make the decision not to race on Tuesday, we're delighted to get the goahead for this weekend.

The difficult decision was made between the BHA's Course Inspectorate, the Northern Safety Jockey, the chairman of the stewards panel, the head groundsman and myself.

We all agreed that there were too many areas of false ground that would have been impossible to avoid during a flat-out flat race.

If we had been jump racing we may well have been able to doll out the areas and have the bigger boned national hunt horses gallop through such ground.

The finer boned flat horses travelling at speed would not have coped with these conditions and could have ended up injured or falling in the deep wet conditions. …

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