Tipperary Racecourse History

The earliest record of racing in the town of Tipperary was a four day meeting, spread over seven days, from Thursday 11th to Wednesday 17th October 1787. The meeting opened with a 50 Guineas Plate over a mile and a half which was won by Mr D B Daly’s Little Moll, while the next day an all-age Handicap was staged in which the 3 year olds were allocated ‘a feather’ compared to 7st 3lb for 4 year olds, and up to 8st 12lb for aged horses. The event was won by Mr Hewson’s 6 year old Lady Betty, beating the 5 year old Ranunculus. Meetings continued to be advertised as Tipperary until 27th March 1848 when racing transferred to the Barronstown course where it remained for over half a century. The Tipperary meeting was always held in high regard, never more so than during the War years. In April 1917 the War Cabinet announced that all racing in the United Kingdon would be prohibited on economic grounds, but after much wrangling a deal was struck whereby a small number of venues could continue to stage racing; the two chosen courses being the Curragh and Tipperary. The September 1916 meeting was billed as ‘Limerick Junction’ and racing continued to be advertised as such until switching back to its current name. By May 1986 the course, a mile and 2 furlongs in length, was renamed Tipperary despite it being 2 miles from the town centre, and today the course offers both Flat and National Hunt racing. Its most important Flat race is the grade 3 Fairy Bridge Stakes, while the most important National Hunt race is the grade 2 Tipperary Hurdle.

Currently the course hosts 10 fixtures annually.
Although Tipperary remains a thriving racecourse, nearby Cashel closed its gates for the final time in 1917.
The County Tipperary town of Cashel first held a five day meeting in October 1751. Sir Edward O’Brien was a strong supporter of the course and captured the feature race on Thursday 17th October 1751 with his bay horse Ranger. In 1777, to further promote their races, Cashel promised there would be assemblies every night for the Ladies and Gentlemen during the meeting, with no more than a guinea charged for a bed during the week. Races continued on a very regular basis, with the course attracting some prominent sponsors. On Monday 4th August 1794 Viscount Landaff sponsored the principal Plate which was won by Colonel Hyde’s Lady Ann. The Irish Racing Calendar, which up to 1797 had diligently published results from most large meetings, failed to include Cashel results in its publication. In the early 1840s the track received a boost when the Dublin to Cashel railway opened, making the course more accessible to a wider group of punters. Racing lapsed for a brief period in the 19th century, but returned in 1853, although profits were not always used for the benefit of the course. Necessary improvements were not carried out and when an Irish Racecourse inspection committee was formed in the early 20th century, Cashel was one of the courses requiring improvement.  The final meeting took place on Thursday 19th April 1917.
I am grateful to Google Maps (© Googlemap) for permission to use the map shown below.

ISBN 978-0-9957632-0-3

652 pages

774 former courses

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352 pages

400 former courses

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180 pages

140 former courses

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264 pages

235 former courses

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