Auteuil Grade 1 National Hunt races may be postponed

Sat 23rd May 2020, 13:50

Benie Des Dieux pictured at Willie Mullins County Carlow base
© Photo Healy Racing

France Galop has scheduled the Grand Steeple-Chase de Paris and the Grande Course de Haies d'Auteuil to take place at Auteuil racecourse on June 7.

The Grade 1 Grand Steeple-Chase de Paris was won in 2019 by the Davy Russell ridden Carriacou while the Grade 1 Grande Course de Haies d'Auteuil has been won five times by Willie Mullins trained runners including last year when the Paul Townend ridden Benie Des Dieux landed the prize which is the French equivalent of the Champion Hurdle.

Auteuil racecourse on the outskirts of Paris currently sits within the Coronavirus 'Red Zone' in France which means the area needs to be re-categorised as a 'Green Zone' before June 7 in order for the meeting to go ahead as planned.

Should the meeting not take place at Auteuil all other races on the card, with the exception of the big two Grade 1 contests, will be switched to Pau racecourse in the south of the country.

The Grade 1 contests will instead be added at a later stage to the Autumn programme of races.

THE IRISH TIMES