Further weather woe for Warwick

The end of 2012 brought no joy to Warwick officials as the course lost yet another meeting to bad weather in what has been a year to forget, writes David Hucker.

With five meetings, a quarter of its programme, having already been cancelled, the popular New Year’s Eve fixture was the last chance for the course to recoup some of its lost revenues.

The main restaurant had been sold out and a big crowd was expected for the seven-race card that featured two qualifiers for The Jockey Club Grassroots Jumps Series.

But, with 60mm of water having fallen on the track in the week leading up to Christmas Day and the rain continuing to come down right up to Sunday, the decision was taken to abandon more than 24 hours before the scheduled meeting start time.

Clerk of the course Sulekha Varma had been hopeful of racing as it was possible to bypass the wettest areas but another downpour on Saturday night made this a non-starter.

“We had 11mm of rain on Saturday that left significant areas of standing water and, with further rain forecast before the meeting, this gave no prospect for improvement and we had no choice but to abandon,” she said.

The loss of the meeting meant a low-key exit for commercial manager Lee Moulson, who is moving to take up a new role at sister course Cheltenham.

Weather permitting, the next action is on Saturday January 12 and will feature the Betfred Classic Chase, won last year in good style by top-weight Hey Big Spender, who is being aimed at a repeat victory.

Advance bookings can be made on the ticket hotline (08445 793013) or online at www.warwickracecourse.co.uk