Guest Author - Mary Ellen Sweeney
The United States has the Kentucky Derby, The Middle East the Dubai World Cup, and Ireland The Galway Races.
Held in July, with sessions in September and October, The Galway Races are premier social events in Irish horse racing. Friends and families can be found year after year, dressed to the nines, seeing and being seen at these big horse-racing sessions. People of all ages prepare for the races, plan for holidays, and arrange schedules to participate in Ireland's most sought after equine events.
It's more than just the racing that bring people out: it's the air full of excitement, the whispering of gossip and good tips, the aroma of cooking food, the delightful sound of a pint pouring, champagne popping, and the sense of fortunes won and lost on the bet on strong and sturdy steed.
People from all walks of life turn up for the races, and it is not surprising to see a farmer wearing a pair of wellies next to a lady in a silk dress decked out with an over-the-top-hat. Celebrities sip drinks and all manner of hob-nobbing goes on. Famous, infamous, it doesn't matter. Donít be surprised to see musicians, stars of stage and screen, politicians, and artist and literary professionals.
The race course has both flat and national hunt races. The track is a right handed course one mile and two furlongs long, with an incline where the last two fences are situated. There is a sharp incline to the finish line. Just to add a little interest to the game.
In July, September, and October, in Galway, in Ireland.
Gates open two and a half hours before the race each day. All routes to the Race-course are marked by A.A. signs.
How to get there....
The course is located approximately three miles from Galway city, and two miles from Galway Airport, so it is easily accessible if youíre staying in Galway or if you take a flight in from other parts of Europe.
The only piece of advice I can give you is.... Give yourself plenty of time to get there. There will be long lines to enter the parking area and the course itself, so get yourself an extra 30 minutes, you will thank me, I promise!
If You Drive
If youíre driving, there are multiple entrances; the main one is the (N6) which is the major Dublin, Galway, Limerick route. The (N17) is the Galway/Sligo route, and the last one is Parkmore Road, which runs along side the Parkmore Industrial Estate.
If You Fly
Taking the Bus
Taking a Taxi
Galway Mini Bus
Galway City Taxi