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'It's Kildare's Cliffs of Moher' | The unique history of The Curragh | Friday Night Racing

The Curragh's unique history outside of just the racecourse needs to be celebrated, according to the current Chief Executive of The Curragh Racecourse Brian Kavanagh.



'It's Kildare's Cliffs of Mohe...
Racing

'It's Kildare's Cliffs of Moher' | The unique history of The Curragh | Friday Night Racing

The Curragh's unique history outside of just the racecourse needs to be celebrated, according to the current Chief Executive of The Curragh Racecourse Brian Kavanagh.

As one of Ireland's most celebrated racing grounds, The Curragh has a soft spot in the hearts of many a racing fan.

Recent redevelopments and some complaints around the grounds have hurt the reputation of the hallowed course, however the unique history of the area and the racecourse itself means that it will live on past the struggling times.

Speaking on Friday Night Racing, Kavanagh discussed the historic area of Kildare, not just for racing fans.

"It's not just horse racing," Kavanagh said. "The Curragh itself as a landscape or as an area is unique in Ireland. It is mystical, that's the right word.

"I say it's Kildare's Cliffs of Moher. No other county has it."

Built on the Curragh plain in County Kildare, between the towns of Newbridge and Kildare, the Curragh has seen more than just horse racing in the history of the island.

"There is unbelievable history around the Curragh in terms of it's military history, the sites of great battles in the 1798 rising, you've got Braveheart Hill where the battle scenes in Braveheart were filmed," Kavanagh said.

"It's a unique sheep-raising area. People from outside our area still don't get used to the fact that there's sheep roaming around the place.

"It's flora and fauna are quite unique. There's a really good story to be told about the Curragh and we want racing to be part of that."

The Curragh's track is a blessing

However, Kavanagh feels that what truly make The Curragh special is the track on which so many legendary horses have raced to victory.

"From a racing point of view, we are blessed with the track really," Kavanagh said. "It's natural terrain. It's a bit like a St Andrew's or a Ballybunion in golf.

"It's not something that a crowd of contractors came in with tractors and diggers and built. It's been that way for hundreds of years.

"There is something great about the fact that Westover won the Derby there racing over the exact same piece of turf that Santa Clause did in 1964. It's a smashing track and it's one to be very proud of."

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