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Shocking video shows moment sulky overturns after race through Laois town

This is the moment two sulkys race through the streets of Portlarlington before one strikes the pavement and upturns.

In a video that has been widely shared on social media, the two racers can be seen being pursued by a Garda car before one upends going around a corner and the three riders fall out.

As horrified passers-by look on, they then scramble to make their escape on foot as the gardai give chase.

Locals have reacted to the incident in disgust, with one councillor from the area describing it as “dreadful”.

“Not only did I see the footage but I was on the scene when it happened,” Cllr Aidan Mullins said. “It’s only about 100 metres from where I live on Foxcroft Street.

“I was pulling into my driveway and I saw the gardai bring away the pony.

"It’s shocking stuff. They came down Main Street but then they turned onto Foxcroft, which is a one way street.

"You’re not meant to travel up the street in that direction so it could have been very serious if there were cars coming the other way.

"You can see them flying around the corner and one of them hits the kerb and they’re thrown out of it. That could have resulted in a serious injury.”

Cllr Mullins said they while sulky racing has been an issue on the roads outside the town, he hadn’t seen them race along Main Street before.

“It’s not like this is a daily occurrence,” he said.

“You see them out on the roads out of town alright. Sometimes those guys would be mature young men from 18 up, who might have a bit more sense, but these are just kids.

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"To give them the benefit of the doubt they probably didn’t realise the danger or maybe they didn't care.

“But there are serious implications from the point of view of pedestrian safety, traffic safety and their own safety. And there are other issues as well, like animal abuse because of the mistreatment of the ponies.”

Cllr Mullins revealed that the footage had circulated so quickly on social media that he saw the clip “within an hour from someone out in Dubai who had sent it”.

“My first reaction when I saw the footage later was, ‘you couldn’t make this stuff up’,” he added.

“They were running away from the gardai behind them and they’re obviously trying to escape. You can see one of the kids taking off, scampering up the street."

Another local councillor, Aisling Moran (FG) said she had also seen the footage.

“I saw it and I can tell you we’ve had terrible issues here with sulky racing,” she added.

“The gardai are trying to do something about it, to be fair them but its been going on too long where nobody was doing anything.

“I’ve brought up a couple of motions at council level as part of the process of getting the bylaws changed to give the gardai more power. And they need to be changed now.”

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