Racing: Punters occupy Chantilly track

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The Independent Online
THE Prix de Diane (French Oaks) was nearly called off yesterday after a strike by Pari-Mutuel workers prompted angry punters to demonstrate on the track at Chantilly.

Hundreds of racegoers occupied the course in front of the main stand in protest at the strikers' refusal to take bets. But the race finally went ahead two hours late after the strikers agreed to operate half of the track's betting shops and punters returned to the stands.

In the race, the Aga Khan's Shemaka held on by a nose from Sheikh Mohammed's Baya after a tremendous battle inside the final furlong. Dancienne was third.