Rain creates modern record as non-runner total passes 100


A wet Tuesday and Wednesday produced a modern-day record with the rain that swept over parts of Britain delivering in excess of a century of non-runners.

By 5pm a total of 105 horses had been pulled out of contests across five meetings, with the turf fixtures at Pontefract, Yarmouth and Bath hardest hit.

While 315 horses were declared on Monday for four turf fixtures completed by Brighton, 95 of those horses were scratched, creating an absentee ratio of nearly one in three.

However, while at Pontefract, Yarmouth and Bath the problem was rain making underfoot conditions softer than at the time of declarations, Brighton was hit by forecast rain failing to materialise.

Previous best eclipsed

On July 17, 2009 there were 100 non-runners, which at that stage was the biggest number since 2000.

Yarmouth received nearly 10mm of rain in the hours leading up to racing and lost nearly half of its 62 intended runners.

"I think my previous record over 12 years was 20, so we have exceeded that," said clerk of the course Richard Aldous.

"It's just one of those things. At this time of year trainers want quick ground and they did declare on good to firm.

"There's nothing I can do about it. Trainers run their own businesses and will run horses where they want. Our customers look at things from a different perspective. I have to see both points of view."

Also phlegmatic at the day's developments was Paddy Power spokesman Paul Binfield.

"This obviously hasn't helped turnover, and it's clearly not good from a betting perspective, but it has been more of a nuisance than carnage," said Binfield. "Given the summer we've been having it hasn't come as a surprise."