The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) has programmed a provisional all-Chase card for Wincanton on Thursday, January 31st, in an attempt to safeguard the fixture. This will consist of the three Chases originally scheduled plus three additional Steeple Chase opportunities. Wincanton’s going is currently described as Heavy.
All additional races will be free to enter and a final decision on whether the existing hurdle races will be abandoned and the provisional chases activated, will be made at 3pm on Tuesday, January 29th.
The provisional, additional Steeple Chases will close at noon on Tuesday, January 29th.
Should these races subsequently be activated, they will close for declarations in line with the existing races at 10am on Wednesday, January 30th.
Explaining the plan, Steve Parlett, Wincanton’s General Manager, said:
“Over the weekend we experienced 28mm of rain, making the going heavy.
“In light of the fact that the ground-staff have not been able to work on the track since mid-January until today, and with a forecast of up to 25mm rain in the next 24 hours, we asked the BHA to provisionally schedule an all Chase card for Thursday.
“Despite there being no standing water, the course is too wet to roll.
“A decision will be made tomorrow based on the condition of the course following any overnight rain. If the weather forecast is kind, we shall press on with the original races – this is purely a contingency plan if needed to give us the best chance to get racing on.
“I would like to take the opportunity to credit our grounds team, headed by Clerk of the Course Barry Johnson. The team have done a sterling job this season to stage the majority of our fixtures despite the testing weather conditions and have rightly received praise from an abundance of trainers and jockeys.”
A provisional, revised running order and race conditions are outlined below.
1:40 00633 The Elite Racing Club Novices’ Limited Handicap Steeple Chase (Class 3)
2:10 00639 The Carling Johny Witcombe Fan Club Novices’ Steeple Chase (Class 4)
2:40 00631 The Grolsch Handicap Steeple Chase (Class 3)
3:10 00638 The Carolyn Brown Celebration Veterans’ Handicap Steeple Chase (Class 2)
3:40 00637 The CGA Foxhunter Trial Hunters’ Steeple Chase (Class 6)
4:10 00630 The Connolly’s Red Mills Handicap Steeple Chase (Class 4)