Punchestown has been forecast frost, sleet and snowPICTURE: Patrick McCann (racingpost.com/photos)
Punchestown inspects beforeSaturday card
A FORECAST for frost, sleet and snow on Friday has prompted Punchestown to schedule a 7.30am inspection before its Saturday card.
The track was raceable on Friday at declaration time and the ground was officially described as soft. However, officials described it as "touch and go" that the chase track will be fit for racing on Saturday.
Temperatures plummeted to -3°C on Thursday night and are forecast to again on Friday night. Fresh ground has been released for the hurdle track, but this cannot be done on the chase track.
Manager Richie Galway said:"By increasing the width of the hurdle track by 10-12 yards we will be able to use fresh ground, that I think can withstand a fair amount of frost.
"The chase track is ground that was raced on on New Year's Eve and I would be concerned for it after another night's frost, particularly as temperatures are set to only just get above freezing tomorrow.
"There is a combination of rain, sleet and snow forecast, but only small amounts and I would see the frost as a bigger concern."
Landings and take-offs have been covered all week and the 2m maiden hurdle divided to give a six-race card should the two chases be abandoned.
Find out what the prospects are for forthcoming fixtures in Britain and Ireland with our at-a-glance guide