The residents might not like it, but for most people, the word ‘limerick’ causes thoughts of poems that are often a bit smutty or rude. There’s also a city in Ireland with the same name as the poems and if you head to Limerick in County Limerick, you should check out the excellent greyhound stadium that the city boasts.
It’s excellent for a number of reasons – not least of which are the top-class facilities that serve visitors to the greyhound track. Those facilities are state-of-the-art with the stadium having only opened in 2010. That makes it one of the newest greyhound stadiums in Ireland and if you head here then you can expect an evening filled with excitement and entertainment. Whether you want to have a bite to eat in the restaurant or just have a drink and watch the racing, the stage is set for a fun time.
Limerick Greyhound Stadium
Race Days & Times
If you’re hoping to see some live racing at Limerick Greyhound Stadium then the best time to go to along is at the weekend. The owners and staff want you to have fun, so they host the racing on nights when most people don’t need to worry about work in the morning. Race nights are on a Friday and a Saturday every week.
Because the racing is on a non-school night, you can relax and have a drink if that takes your fancy. You can enter the venue from 6.30pm on both nights with just over an hour before the first race for you to find the bar, restaurant or snack areas. Normally the racing starts at 7.46pm on Fridays and Saturdays.
- Ticket Prices: Because Limerick Greyhound Stadium is an Irish Greyhound Board venue, you’ll likely find deals on for your entry that include a bite to eat or the like. Should there be no such deals at the time you’re looking to go, then you’ll pay €10 for your entry and that will include your Race Card.
- Getting There: The stadium is to the South-West of Limerick city centre, just below the River Shannon. It’s pretty much right in the middle of the N69 and the N18 if you’re driving there, or it’s about forty-minutes walk from Limerick Train Station. Buses don’t exactly stop outside the venue, but numbers 13, 14, 301, 304, 304A, 304X, 314, 320 and 321 all stop within walking distance. There’s also a complimentary shuttle bus that runs from the city centre on Saturday evenings.
- Parking: There’s a large car park for most types of vehicles on the Eastern side of the racecourse.
The Limerick Greyhound Company formed in 1933 with the aim of bringing greyhound racing to the city of Limerick. It took four years, but in 1937, thanks to T. F. Ryan and J. P. Frost, a new stadium called Markets Field opened and the inaugural night of greyhound racing took place. It remained in situ until 2009 when the stadium ceased operating greyhound racing and its sole use became hosting Limerick Football Club’s home matches.
The closing of markets field wasn’t a surprise to the residents of Limerick, however. It had been planned for some time with the intention being to open a state-of-the-art venue to replace it. The Irish Greyhound Board had selected the site of a former horse racing course called Greenpark as the spot where they’d build the new venue, at a cost of €18 million. The stadium officially opened on the 22nd of October in 2010 and the industry hailed it as an immediate success. The Chairman of the new Limerick Greyhound Stadium Tony McKenna, who also happened to be a director of the Irish Greyhound Board, believed that it would be used as a touchstone for future developments within the sport.
The Irish Greyhound Board have their headquarters on-site at the track, partly because they also own and operate it. The money spent on its development means that it can host just shy of 3,000 people. There’s a restaurant that’s big enough to seat 190 guests at any one time, hospitality suites and numerous bars. The most prestigious event held at the venue is the St. Leger, which was originally held at Markets Field and moved over to Limerick Stadium when it opened. There’s also a race called the Kirby Memorial Stakes. This offered a prize of €80,000 when it was first run as it was sponsored by the horse racing tycoon J. P. McManus.