About Listowel Racecourse
Of all the racecourses in rural Ireland, Listowel Racecourse is without a doubt one of the jewels in the crown. This track is located deep in the County Kerry countryside on the edge of the small town of Listowel and while it is a three-hour drive from Dublin, it is certainly worth the effort. The venue plays host to nine annual race meetings which are divided between the two-day meeting in June and the celebrated seven-day Listowel Harvest Festival which takes place in September. The earliest racing at this location took place in 1858 and the highlight of the Harvest Festival is the Kerry National, a highly valuable and hugely competitive handicap chase. The most famous runner to win this race was King George and Irish Derby winner Alamshar in 2002.
Listowel Racecourse Location
Listowel isn’t the easiest place to get to, however the seven-day Harvest Festival is worth making the effort for. Trains don’t serve the south-west of Ireland particularly well, therefore driving is the only real alternative. There is no railway station at Listowel and Shannon is the closest international airport, therefore a car is the order of the day, the journey from Limerick taking a little over an hour. If you are staying in the town centre, then the grandstands are a ten minute walk from Market Street. A taxi from the town centre will set you back around €4 – €5.
This is a sharp left-handed track with a length of one mile and one furlong. The run-in has a length of approximately two furlongs and the track suits the speedy sort of runner.
This is an extremely sharp oval track, left-handed with a length of around one and a quarter miles. This favours the handier type and even lengthier races of over 3 miles present the runner with few real tests of stamina. The circuit on the chase track has five fences with two of these being on the home straight which is under two furlongs, the run-in being approximately 200 yards.
Listowel Racecourse Betting Guide
The Flat track at Listowel is very tight and rides best in soft conditions. With undulations, things tend to slow down when softer and the draw isn’t important in these conditions. Proven stamina is important at this venue given that the ground can get very heavy. On firmer ground, a low draw is an advantage and pace is of the utmost importance.
Listowel is a tight track although there are two different tracks which are used giving differing degrees of sharpness. The nature of the ground is a unique feature as in testing conditions there are relatively few runners that can handle it, fields tending to become strung out fairly quickly. Many horses can have an inexplicably bad run here.
Trainers & Jockeys
Over the past three years, Willie Mullins is the pick of the trainers here with 6 wins from 29 runners, ahead of J P Ryan with 5 from 22. Paul Townend is top jockey over this period with 4 wins from 15, giving him a strike rate of 26.67%.