Rain takes toll as fixtures hit by 100 non-runners – with 233 to go to post
Wednesday's British racing will be without almost one third of all the horses declared to take part on Monday after rain across Britain helped to produce a century of non-runners.
At 12.18pm, La Havresse became the 100th defector on the day when taken out of Yarmouth's 5.45pm contest, the official reason given being the going.
By 1.30pm, only 233 of the horses declared to run across the four turf meetings on Wednesday had stood their ground, with only 43 set to go to post at Yarmouth in the evening.
Across the day's turf fixtures, only four of the non-runners posted by 12.30pm had been removed for reasons other than the ground.
Pontefract is predicting gruelling conditions for its programme, which survived a morning inspection.
A total of 26mm of rain fell on the Yorkshire track on Tuesday and into Wednesday, but the morning inspection was passed.
Ground conditions were reported as soft, heavy in places, having been good to soft, soft in places, on Tuesday. This was subsequently changed to soft all over.
Assistant manager Richard Hammill said: "It was still raining when we were checking the course but thankfully it stopped at around 6am and the rain is now well to the south of us.
"The area of concern was between the three and two poles on the run around the bend. That is absolutely fine and the other parts of the racecourse aren't bad at all.
"Sun is forecast and it's going to be quite breezy, so the ground could become gluey and holding, as opposed to the sort they slosh through."
With 31 non-runners, Pontefract is leading the way numerically on defectors, followed by Yarmouth, where 26 horses are absentees. The ground there is good to soft, having been good on Tuesday.
There are 25 non-runners at Bath, whose ground has deteriorated to soft from good.
Underfoot conditions remain somewhat different at Brighton, reported to be good to firm, firm on places.
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