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Irelands first green racing festival

The Association of Irish Racecourses (AIR) will spotlight Limerick Racecourse this week ahead of their upcoming Christmas meeting from Monday, 26th to 29th of December inclusive.

We caught up with racecourse manager Tom Rudd as preparations are in full swing for the Mr Binman Christmas Festival. The recently appointed boss is looking forward to the meeting, and said “Racing at Limerick is a huge sporting and social Christmas tradition in Munster, so the team and I are really looking forward to opening our gates on St Stephen’s Day, and putting on a great racing and entertainment show for everyone over the four days.

“We have worked hard with Mr Binman to make our Christmas Festival as sustainable as possible, and I would like to thank Mr Binman’s Joe Cleary and his team for their innovation and enthusiasm. In addition to 30 brilliant jumps races, we have lots of fun and entertainment planned.”

Limerick Racecourse has partnered with Mr Binman to become Ireland’s first green racing festival.

The racecourse and the Co Limerick waste management and recycling solutions company have committed to reducing waste drastically at Greenmount Park by using green suppliers and compostable materials throughout the Christmas Festival. Mr Binman will also provide compost and recycling facilities for all patrons.

With over €500,000 in prize money on offer, racegoers are promised four days of top-class racing with the Grade 1 Guinness Faugheen Novice Chase the highlight on St Stephen’s Day. Day two features the Grade 2 The Lyons of Limerick Jaguar Land Rover Doran’s Pride Novice Hurdle. Wednesday, December 28th has as its highlight the Grade 2 McMahons Builders Providers EBF Dawn Run Mares Chase, while the Grade 2 Coolmore Stud Sporting Limerick Hurdle is the centrepiece on the final day, Thursday, December 29th.

Celia Holman Lee will host the sustainable fashion event on Wednesday, December 28th. Ladies and gents are encouraged to show their fashion ingenuity to win some of the cash prizes on offer.

The aim is to support the shift away from fast fashion to being more resourceful, inspiring people in different communities to join a growing movement for change and find individual ways of engaging with sustainability.

Junior racegoers

Family fun day takes centre stage on the final day and junior racegoers will be treated to a host of entertainment and activities such as balloon art modelling, arts and crafts, face-painting, kiddie disco and meet and greets with their favourite cartoon characters. A fun fair will be in place for each day of the festival, along with live music in the Guinness Marquee while a DJ will keep racegoers entertained in the Tote Hall.

The popular punter package starts at €29 per person and includes general admission, a racecard, a pint of beer or glass of wine and a €5 Ladbrokes bet. The Christmas cracker bundle is available from €50 per person and includes general admission, a racecard, a pint of beer or glass of wine and a main course in the Munster Suite.

General admission starts at €20 per person and children under 12 are free.

There is limited availability for the rugby and racing package. Priced at €70 for adults, you enjoy general admission to the races on St Stephen’s day with a racecard and a bus transfer to Thomond Park with a category C seat for the Munster v Leinster game at 7:35pm.

The Association of Irish Racecourses would like to wish Tom and the team at Limerick Racecourse, along with those at Leopardstown and Down Royal, the very best of luck with their upcoming Christmas meetings. For further info, tickets and more visit where you can find links to all our member racecourses.

By Leo Powel

Irish field

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