ENGLISH DERBY CONFIRMED FOR OCTOBER

ENGLISH DERBY CONFIRMED FOR OCTOBER

Ian Fortune

As we predicted earlier in the week, the English Derby is set to be completed at Nottingham in the month of October after it was yesterday announced that the event will be jointly sponsored by Star Sports and ARC.

There had been some uncertainty about whether the event would even take place this year after the forced postponement due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The classic will be restricted to 96 runners and be a five round event, one less than normal, while the winner’s purse will total stg£50,000.

The opening round has been set for the weekend of October 2nd/ 3rd with the final scheduled for Halloween night, October 31st. It will be interesting to note how many Irish take in the competition, but the dates are as favourable as they could possibly be given the condensed nature of the Irish calendar in the second half of the year.

The event will clash with the Irish Laurels but the Cork classic is probably better suited for the speed merchants, while Nottingham is a true test of a 550yd greyhound. The other clash is the Irish Leger is due to start at Limerick on Halloween Night, the same night as the English Derby decider.

PRESS RELEASE

Final on Saturday 31st October
Winner’s Purse of £50k

96 entrants with rounds beginning on Weekend of 2nd/3rd October

Arena Racing Company (“ARC”) confirm that this year’s Greyhound Derby will take place at Nottingham over the month of October.

The jewel in UK Greyhound Racing’s crown, The English Greyhound Derby, will now proceed after weeks of hard work and planning to make it possible.

Rachel Corden, ARC’s Greyhound Operations Director, said: “The Greyhound Derby is the pinnacle of the racing calendar and we were determined that, despite Covid-19, we would move heaven and earth to make it happen in some form. In the current climate it will be a smaller competition than normal, with no third round, but it at least means we will have a 2020 Derby. The Final will be scheduled for Saturday 31 October. 
“We are very grateful to Ben Keith & Star Sports for their on-going support and for committing to their joint sponsorship of the Derby. And we are delighted that Nottingham will host the Derby for the second year in a row”.

“This is a substantial commitment from ARC and Star Sports to ensure our flagship event takes place, particularly as, there could be no public attendance and therefore no hospitality or on-site betting revenue. Should it prove possible to have a public attendance for the competition in due course we will assess what that might look like at Nottingham to ensure Government guidance at the time could be safely met”. 

Ben Keith of Star Sports said: “It’s been a tough year for everyone, but we can now look forward to The Greyhound Derby, so let’s all get behind Nottingham and have the best Derby ever.”

Week

Days

2020 Dates

First Rounds

Fri & Sat

2 & 3 Oct

Second Rounds

Sat

10 Oct

Quarter Finals

Sat

17 Oct

Semi Finals

Sat

24 Oct

Final

Sat

31 Oct