A Guide to Horse Racing in Ireland

Keen to know more about Irish racing? Read this guide to horse racing betting in Ireland!


Horse racing in Ireland has a long and very proud history, rich with tales of famous horses and jockeys. There is probably no other country in the world where the sport means so much to the culture of the people. Ireland has produced some of the world’s most famous jockeys and trainers, as well as horses, so it is no surprise that the country’s iconic races attract so much attention from bettors.

Horse Racing Ireland

In this article, we’ll take a brief look at the type of horse racing Ireland offers. We’ll give you more information about the top venues used for Irish racing, as well as some of the most famous races. We’ll also give you a few tips on how to improve your strategy for horse racing betting in Ireland, so read on!

Iconic Irish racing venues

We begin our journey around Irish racing at Fairyhouse, a racecourse near Dublin. This venue hosts one of the biggest events in horse racing, the Irish Grand National, which takes place on Easter Monday each year. As well as the Irish Grand National, Fairyhouse also hosts the Irish Gold Cup. Located in County Meath, not far from Dublin in the east of Ireland, Fairyhouse is owned by Horse Racing Ireland.

Anyone with a passing knowledge of Irish horse racing will have heard of The Curragh. Located in County Kildare, this venue is one of Ireland’s most important thoroughbred racecourses. Indeed, the name ‘curragh’ is derived from the Irish Gaelic word ‘cuirreach’ which means ‘place of the running horses’. Horse racing has been staged on the site since at least 1727, with the first Irish Derby being held there in 1866.

Leopardstown is another famed Irish racing venue, and it is handily placed, being just eight kilometres from the centre of Dublin. The course was completed in 1888, and was deliberately modelled on the English venue of Sandown by its creator Captain George Quinn. Leopardstown, like most Irish horse racing venues, hosts both Flat and National Hunt racing, and hosts around 22 meetings a year.

Famous Irish horse races

As we have mentioned above, two of the most famous Irish horse races are the Irish Grand National and the Irish Gold Cup. But if you’re casting an eye over the latest bet365 horse racing odds then there are other iconic Irish races on which you can wager.

The Punchestown Festival is staged at Punchestown racecourse. This festival of racing is held the week after England’s Cheltenham Festival and follows a similar structure, with iconic races like the Champion Chase and the Champion Hurdle, as well as the Punchestown Gold Cup, to enjoy.


Anyone looking to enjoy some horse racing betting in Ireland should also visit the Galway Summer Festival, which takes place every July and features races like the Galway Plate Chase Handicap and the Galway Hurdle Handicap. Over 100,000 people attend the event every year. There’s even a famous Irish song called The Galway Races that pays tribute to the festival’s history and colour. 

How to bet on horse racing in Ireland

If you’ve spotted a tempting horse racing sign up bonus and you want to use it on some Irish racing events, then you need to do your research. Success in betting, whatever the sport, remains based on you possessing a thorough knowledge of the horses, trainers and jockeys involved in the sport. You need to study form and follow the news to gain strong insights into how horses and jockeys are likely to perform on a given day at a specific venue.

As well as knowing about the form of horses, jockeys and trainers, you also need to know about the venues for races. The conditions of the ground over which horses race remain an important factor in determining the outcome of races. Always pay close attention to how the weather affects the ground at different venues that host Irish races. If you do, the chances of the horse racing in Ireland results going in your favour are much greater.


As you can see, the traditions of horse racing in Ireland run deep. The country’s climate and geography created the perfect environment for the breeding of racehorses, and the sport is embedded deeply in Irish culture. For lovers of horse racing, the Irish Grand National remains one of the sport’s iconic events and bettors from across the world place wagers on the race. Iconic venues like The Curragh, Leopardstown and Fairyhouse are known across the world. Anyone wanting to learn how to bet on horse racing should certainly pay close attention to Ireland!

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