Galway Races has gone all nostalgic in the build up to this year’s 148th Summer Festival, with the launch of a new video called ‘The Week’.
The short piece features former Head Groundsman Tom Broderick, who worked on the racecourse for over 50 years, jockey Robbie Power, Gráinne Seoige, Mary Lee, Peter Timmins and trainer Gordon Elliott’s yard.
Widely regarded as the highlight of the summer season in Ireland, Galway Races offers not just horse racing, but live music and entertainment, fashion and family fun, which last year attracted 150,000 people from all over Ireland and abroad.
And with a total record breaking prize money up for grabs of €2 million euro, and a minimum prize money of €100,000 for the day’s feature race, the best National Hunt horses, trainers and jockeys will be vying to be in the winner’s enclosure.
Willie Mullins will be out to retain his leading trainer award, after his nine winners last year, while Ruby Walsh’s seven winners was enough to see him crowned champion jumps rider for the week.
Wednesday’s feature race, the Tote.com Galway Plate, is now worth a staggering €250,000, while the prize money for the famous Guinness Galway Hurdle on Thursday is an impressive €300,000.
Friday features the Guinness Handicap valued at €100,000, and Saturday’s feature race has a new sponsor with Galway Shopping Centre now sponsoring the handicap hurdle worth €100,000.
A well as an increase in prize money, this year’s festival, which runs from Monday 31st July to Sunday 6th August and which will feature 52 races, will see a few new additions.
The opening day of the festival will commence with a special opening ceremony on a day themed ‘Gather Your Tribe’ in the City of the Tribes, Galway. Racegoers will be warmly greeted by vibrant tribal drummers at the two main entrances. The first race will be preceded by a very special performance by the Galway Tenors.
Situated beside the Killanin Stand, the new Festival Village will offer our racegoer a new destination at the Galway Races. Race goers will enjoy craft beer, a shopping village, big screen to watch the racing, betting facilities and live music all week with resident DJ’s and local bands.
Speaking at the launch of the Galway Summer Festival, Galway Race Committee Chairman Peter Allen, said: “Our committee are delighted with the record breaking level of prize money at the Summer Festival this year.
“It is with credit to all our sponsors and to Horse Racing Ireland that we have been in a position to provide fantastic prize money and an exciting programme is on the cards for 2017.
“We look forward to offering some great racing and entertainment during the Festival. The success of the Galway Races would certainly not be possible without the hard work and support of so many, and for that we are immensely grateful.”