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Earliest meeting: Friday 29th May 1857
Final meeting: Friday 26th April 1867
The County Cork town of Dooniskey first held race meetings in 1857 when the principal race was the Dooniskey Chase. The course, on the outskirts of the town, was surrounded by conical hills which provided up to 20,000 spectators with a superb view of the races. From the course there were the Killarney mountains to the west, the River Lee on the north, and beautiful views of Warren Court to the south. At the meeting on Tuesday 2nd October 1860 the feature Dooniskey Chase saw Mr Popham’s Chance beat Hamlet. On 12th May 1866 the local railway station, on the Cork and Macroom Direct Line, opened for the first time, and provided more racegoers the chance to enjoy the races. Races were held annually until the final record of a 2 day meeting was on Friday 26th April 1867.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 4 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons Charles Beamish, Captain Baldwin
Principal Races Dooniskey Chase, Gentleman’s Cup, Farmers’ Cup

Tuesday 2nd October 1860
Dooniskey Chase over 18 stiff jumps
1. Chance owned by Mr Popham
2. Hamlet owned by Captain Baldwin
3. Rory O’Moore owned by Mr Lynch

The final meeting took place on Friday 26th April 1867.
Course today On the outskirts of the town with the mountains offering a natural amphitheatre.
If you have photos, postcards, racecards. badges, newspaper cuttings or book references about the old course, or can provide a photo of how the ground on which the old racecourse stood looks today, then email

Much of the information about this course has been found using internet research and is in the public domain. However, useful research sources have been:-

London Illustrated News

Racing Illustrated 1895-1899

The Sporting & Dramatic Illustrated

Northern Turf History Volumes 1-4 by J.Fairfax-Blakeborough

The Sporting Magazine

A Long Time Gone by Chris Pitt first published in 1996 ISBN 0 900599 89 8

Racing Calendars which were first published in 1727

ISBN 978-0-9957632-0-3

652 pages

774 former courses

ISBN 978-0-9957632-1-0

352 pages

400 former courses

ISBN 978-0-9957632-2-7

180 pages

140 former courses

ISBN 978-0-9957632-3-4

264 pages

235 former courses

Copies of the above books are only available by emailing stating your requirements, method of payment (cheque payable to W.Slusar) or Bank transfer, and the address where the book(s) should be sent.
Download an order form
  Quantity Cost
Volume 1 North of Hatfield £19.99 + £4 postage    
Volume 2 South of Hatfield £14.99 + £3 postage    
Volume 3 Wales & Scotland £9.99 + £3 postage    
Volume 4 Ireland £9.99 + £3 postage    
Volumes 1 - 4 £54.96 + £5 postage    
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