Racing: Floodlit fixtures for new track at Great Leighs

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The Independent Online

Great Leighs, the Essex track that will become Britain's first brand new course since Taunton in 1927 when it opens its doors in October 2006, will stage 24 fixtures next year.

New all-weather tracks at Kempton and Newbury will also be unveiled in 2006. Kempton have obtained 49 racedays for their new surface which is under construction. The Sunbury course will also hold five jump cards on turf, including the Christmas meeting.

Newbury's new £4.5m all-weather course will have two fixtures in December 2006 to complement the venue's 18 Flat turf and 11 jump turf fixtures.

In what the British Horseracing Board calls a "landmark list", there are 1,391 fixtures, an increase of 42 on this year. There are more evening fixtures, 229 on 120 evenings, and more Sunday dates, 48. There will be 40 "twilight" Flat fixtures run under floodlights in October, November and December. They have replaced late morning "matinee" cards.

l Dermot Weld's Ansar won his second successive Galway Plate and took his tally at the festival to seven with a seven-length victory yesterday. The nine-year-old, joint top-weight with 12st, has been declared again for the meeting's other feature race, the Galway Hurdle, today. Martin Pipe's Say What You See is the sole challenger from Britain.

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