Monday 15

Horse Racing

Chepstow officials staying optimistic

13th January 2018, 15:01 by Bobbie Jackson

Chepstow course clerk Keith Ottesen says he is optimistic that the Welsh Grand National will take place on Saturday.

The showpiece event was originally scheduled to take place on December 27 but officials had to abandon the fixture due to waterlogging.

Conditions in south east Wales have remained poor over the last week and there were concerns as to whether the event, which was rescheduled for January 6, would take place.

However, Ottesen has allayed fears and insists the team at the track are optimistic that they will be able to open the gates on Saturday.

Ottesen said: "We've got very strong winds and that could be a benefit to us.

"We had plenty of rain last night but it stopped and actually the wind is drying out tarmac that hadn't been dry for a few days so it's going to have a similar effect on the track as well.

"I'm not saying it's going to dry out but it's going to have a marginally good effect though we wouldn't want much more rain.

"From yesterday morning to midnight we had 14mm. We had 3mm in the morning and another 11mm yesterday evening which was quite a bit heavier than we thought, but, miraculously, we could race if it was today. It's very heavy (ground) but we're still in with a chance.

"It's dry today, another band of rain Thursday morning from 3am to 8am, but not a massive amount. More or less dry the rest of Thursday, showery on Friday, once again not enormous amounts and hopefully dry on Saturday. We remain very hopeful and positive."

This article originated on sportinastorm.com

Bobbie Jackson is a reporter with an in-depth knowledge of football at all levels. A Blackpool supporter, Bobbie is also a keen rugby union, boxing, MMA and UFC follower.

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