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Jobs will be lost but in national interest Irish racing flag must now come down

Michael Verney



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Gigginstown chief Eddie O’Leary fears for future of the ‘industry’. Photo: Harry Murphy/Sportsfile

Gigginstown chief Eddie O’Leary fears for future of the ‘industry’. Photo: Harry Murphy/Sportsfile

SPORTSFILE

Gigginstown chief Eddie O’Leary fears for future of the ‘industry’. Photo: Harry Murphy/Sportsfile

Racing's reputation was dragged through the mud last week with everyone having their say about why the Cheltenham Festival should not have taken place as normal, and rightfully so.

More than 250,000 flooded through the turnstiles at the Cotswolds with social distancing quickly forgotten once alcohol hit lips and it almost seemed like a blind eye was turned to fears over the coronavirus.

The decision to plough ahead - "business as usual" as it was described by Cheltenham chiefs - left many astounded and while the spectacle would have been greatly diminished, racing behind closed doors was the obvious solution.