Just over 12,000 people went through the turnstiles at Leopardstown this weekend, and the course have labeled their new festival weekend a success.
Saturday’s attendance figure of 5057 was up 300 on last year’s meeting, which was held on a Saturday. While7,029 people flocked through the gates of the County Dublin track on Sunday, a figure which was just one short of the number of people who attended that same meeting last year.
Given that the appalling weather on Sunday would have been an important factor, the racecourse were delighted with the turnout in the circumstances.
“If you think about last year which didn’t have the weather challenge, you have to be happy with this figure,” said racing and operations manager, Nessa Joyce.
“Obviously this weekend is a new concept, a new festival as such and we are delighted with the results,” Joyce added.
“We came across this idea two years ago when Saturday card from this year was postponed due to the weather so we moved it to the Saturday before the Champion Hurdle day.
“It has been a roaring success. The ground gets more time to recover from the Christmas festival, you can channel all your marketing efforts into one weekend instead of two separate fixtures two weeks apart from each other and new sponsor Boylesports on the Saturday really was the icing on the cake.”
While the tote figures for yesterday’s meeting were significantly down, from €490,277 to €271,109, the statistic is somewhat flawed as the French PMU did not bet into the tote pool this year. Pool betting in France accounted for €241,000 of last year’s total tote turnover.
However the downward theme continued with the on-course bookmakers, the figure of €621,776 was a significant drop from last year’s recorded turnover figure of €785,275.
Leopardstown now plan to cement this racing weekend into the Irish racing calendar.