Racing Through History in New Meath Festival

Ireland’s newest racing festival, The Boyne Valley Racing Weekend, will take place next month linking Navan and Fairyhouse racecourses and celebrating County Meath’s lavish and historic relationship with the horse.

The promotion around the weekend on 13th and 14th July will include reference to the intricate part that horses have played as part of the county’s culture for thousands of years.

Evidence of 2,000 year old carbon dated horse bones from the Boyne Valley Iron Age excavations at Newgrange and Tara show the country’s earliest evidence of the domestication of horses for draught work or indeed racing, as horse teeth analysed from the site showed evidence of wearing consistent with the usage of a horse ‘bit’ to control the animals which are still in use today on bridles.

Horse racing is one of Meath’s most popular spectator sports with just over 107,000 people attending race meetings in the county last year.

It also has the second highest number of horses in training (787) in the country after Kildare.

Total prize money across each of the four racecourses in the county last year came to just over €7.7m on offer at the county’s four racecourses.

Festivities start in Navan Racecourse on Saturday 13th July with great entertainment off track with live music by well known Irish artist Paddy Casey after racing.

There will also be hospitality options on offer with summer food from the region being served. The festival of racing continues the next day in with a special family day at Fairyhouse Racecourse on Sunday 14th July.


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