O’Brien bemoans AW prize money

Joseph O'Brien would like to see more all-weather racing in Ireland but doesn't want 'low grade horses racing for poor prize money.'

Joseph O'Brien wants more all-weather racing

The dual-purpose Pilltown trainer believes that there need to be more opportunities at the lower end of the scale following difficulty getting a run for some of his horses at Dundalk.

"I’d love to see another all-weather track in Ireland and if that’s not the case, then Dundalk should be used more regularly," he told his blog for BoyleSports.

"The lower grade races in Dundalk are oversubscribed every week. We had four entries in a 45-65 graded race last week and the closest one of these entries got to getting in was 22 on the ballot. There was 60 entries in the race. The safety limit in Dundalk is 14 runners."

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The rookie handler did acknowledge though that the authorities face a difficult balancing act.

"I realise the authorities are keen to keep the quality of the racing up in Ireland – we don’t want low grade horses racing for poor prize money," he added .

"I could bring these horses to the UK but you barely cover your costs even if one wins. That’s after expenses are taken into account."

On the proposed closure of Kempton Park, he commented: "I’m not into the politics of racing but it seems such a shame to lose a track of this quality.

"I’ve seen people questioning the need for another all-weather track in the UK. I’d never bemoan all-weather racing. A track in Newmarket is sure to be utilized by all the top trainers."

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