The IGB has finalised the Classics & Feature Events Calendar for 2019 following the consideration of a number of detailed submissions during the two stage consultative process. The calendar will apply for 2019 on a trial basis.
The review of the calendar was to take account of changes in the greyhound industry generally and actual experience of the various fixtures and events. The main objective of the review was to provide a logical sequence of events throughout the year, take account of the various categories of events e.g Middle Distance, Sprints, Staying, Bitch and Puppy Events and the profile of Events. The overall objective was to maximise benefit to the wider greyhound industry.
The final calendar, as approved by the Board, includes the following:
- The Final of the 2019 BoyleSports Irish Greyhound Derby will take place on 21st September 2019.
- The Final of the 2019 Con and Annie Kirby Memorial 525 Stake will take place on 20th April 2019.
- The Final of the Irish Independent Laurels will take place on 19th October 2019.
- The Final of the Barking Buzz St. Leger will take place on 23rd November 2019.
- The Night of Stars will take place at Shelbourne Park on 30th November 2019.
- The Final of the Sporting Press Oaks will take place on 1st June 2019.
- The Final of the Bar One Racing Irish Sprint Cup will take place on 29th March 2019.
- The Final of the GAIN Dog Nutrition Corn Cuchullainn will take place on 9th August 2019.
- The Final of the Gallivan-Murphy-Hooper-Dolan Juvenile Unraced Classic will take place on 8th March 2019.
- The 2019 Irish Cesarewitch will take place at Mullingar Greyhound Stadium over 600 Yards with Final on 11th May 2019.
- The venue for the 2019 Irish Grand National to be decided following the running of the 2018 event
- The Shelley Fennelly Memorial Open Bitch Stake at Cork to be run over 550 Yards. Bitches Stakes be run for various Grades over various Distances throughout 2019.
- IGB has recently issued a Directive to all Racing Managers to increase the number of Novice Distance Races being run at tracks in order to enhance the number of Distance Greyhounds in Entry Pools and Racing Managers have been encouraged to schedule more Distance Races on race cards to ensure that there is more regular racing for those greyhounds which are more suited to Distance racing.
- A schedule of Unraced Sweepstakes will need to be discussed further following the Board decision on this matter. Notwithstanding this, the Committee felt that it would be prudent to include, on the 2019 Calendar, Unraced events and that the Unraced Events be categorised on the Calendar as Premium Unraced Stakes (>=€6000 winners prize) and General Unraced Stakes (<€6000 winners prize).
- The overall calendar to be reviewed after a full year of operation.
It is essential that the Classics and Feature Events Calendar is followed by all stadia. Finals of events cannot be run later than the Board approved date as any slippage has a knock-on effect on the overall calendar.