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Down Royal raring to go again after £500k loss, says Meehan

 

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Looking ahead: Down Royal CEO Emma Meehan is delighted to see racing return, but believes spectators won’t be back on the course until 2021

Looking ahead: Down Royal CEO Emma Meehan is delighted to see racing return, but believes spectators won’t be back on the course until 2021

On course: Down Royal CEO Emma Meehan and Brendan Loughran, Head of Business Unit Ireland, SHS Drinks

On course: Down Royal CEO Emma Meehan and Brendan Loughran, Head of Business Unit Ireland, SHS Drinks

Dadoozdart, with jockey Shane Foley aboard, after winning last year’s prestigious Ulster Derby

Dadoozdart, with jockey Shane Foley aboard, after winning last year’s prestigious Ulster Derby

Looking ahead: Down Royal CEO Emma Meehan is delighted to see racing return, but believes spectators won’t be back on the course until 2021

Down Royal returns with a bang today - and plans are in overdrive to get punters back on the course as soon as it is safe to do so.

The Ulster Derby fixture is one of Down Royal's showpiece occasions and would have seen the venue - which has lost out on a cool £500,000 due to lockdown - packed to the rafters had it gone ahead in its usual slot last month, but these are extraordinary times and today's big race, won last year by Dadoozdart, will be run behind closed doors.

Down Royal's St Patrick's Day fixture also took place behind closed doors but this will be the course's first post-lockdown meeting with all the new protocols in place.