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New covers protect wet Haydock

WITH further rain at Haydock on Tuesday and more forecast for the rest of the week, clerk of the course Kirkland Tellwright revealed that the Betfred Sprint Cup meeting would have been ‘unlikely' to go ahead had plastic sheets not been put down to protect the track.

"There is rain forecast for tomorrow, a little bit on Thursday morning and Friday is forecast to be a wet day," he said.

"The company we use to provide frost covers in the winter, Sports And Stadium Services, also make sheets to cover football pitches against the rain, and we have taken three football pitches' worth of sheeting. We put them down on Saturday and we have got the home straight covered.

"The home straight inevitably has had the most wear because more horses have run up that. There are probably three places that coincide with the undulations of the ground that are particularly worn and if the whole of what is forecast was to land on the course those worn places would not stand it and it is unlikely we would race.

"That would be a hell of a blow and a disappointment for everyone," added Tellwright, who described the ground as officially soft ahead of Saturday's meeting.

The scrapping of the traditional Friday card this season has helped prospects and the clerk of the course pointed out that redevelopment works means that there should be no problem next year when the Group 1 Sprint Cup will be run on the new track.

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