Epsom expects to miss the worst of Friday showers as going remains quick
Epsom's vastly experienced clerk of the course Andrew Cooper admits that frequently fluctuating forecasts for a possible band of showery rain on Friday have kept his team on their toes this week.
But Cooper's latest information holds out the hope that the worst of the weather should fall to the east of the track and that the current going description of good, good to firm in places, is unlikely to be materially altered.
Speaking late on Thursday afternoon after staff had put an average of 2mm of water down to maintain conditions, Cooper said: "There's been suggestions of showery activity bubbling up overnight and coming across the south-east of England.
"We're being told we're very much on the western fringe of any activity and we're not forecast to see any appreciable volumes of rain. But we might have a rather overcast and damp feel to the morning with an improving picture in the afternoon.
"The volume of rain is unlikely to be more than 2-3mm and the heavier stuff is going to be further to the east."
Cooper expects temperatures to return to 20C for Cazoo Derby day on Saturday, with no further rain forecast after Friday.
Epsom's unique place as a public space has again forced authorities to fence off the course for the two days of the Derby festival and there will be no access to the Downs area except for those lucky enough to have a ticket for the enclosures.
"Unfortunately for the second year in succession this is the only way to safely stage this event," said Cooper. "Hopefully things will be very different next year when the Queen's planned attendance on Derby day will form part of her Platinum Jubilee weekend celebrations.
"We want people to enjoy the race meeting from home and not come to the course."
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