Fakenham: facing prospect of a second straight cancellation
PICTURE: Getty Images
By David Baxter 4:17PM 24 JAN 2017
FAKENHAM’S card on Thursday looks unlikely to beat the hard frosts that have hit parts of Britain, with clerk of the course David Hunter calling an inspection for 1pm on Wednesday to assess the situation.
The track was frozen in places on Tuesday, and Hunter said: “We got down to -5.4C on Monday night and there is still some frost in the ground. We wouldn’t have been racing today. We’ve had four nights of between -4C and -8C so we’re going to be up against it.”
A cancellation would be a second in succession for Fakenham, whose fixture on January 15 was also lost to the frost.
Covers down at Doncaster
Frost is also forecast at Doncaster, which stages a two-day meeting on Friday and Saturday, but covers will be deployed on the whole track on Wednesday.
Clerk of the course Roderick Duncan said: “We’ll see what temperatures we will get. Around -2C is forecast but with no real thaw on Thursday. Temperatures are then forecast to rise on Friday, with the potential of rain in the early hours of Saturday morning.”
Cold in the Midlands
His Uttoxeter counterpart Charlie Moore is also hopeful of beating the weather, though there could be a frost each night leading up to the track’s fixture on Saturday.
“We had a frost overnight and were -3C until 9am this morning,” Moore said on Tuesday. “Potentially we’ve got frosts every night including Friday if taking the most pessimistic forecast. But with the grass cover we’ve got and the protection we’ve got down and the forecast of a bit more warmth come Saturday we should be alright.”
Tuesday’s fixtures at Leicester and Wetherby had to pass multiple inspections before getting the green light, but such problems are not envisaged at the two turf meetings in Britain on Wednesday at Catterick and Ludlow.
Fixture added at Taunton
Responding to the threat of frost, the BHA on Tuesday announced an additional six-race fixture at Taunton on Friday, which will begin at 1.15.
The races will close at noon on Wednesday, with declarations to be made by 10am on Thursday.