The official website of Irish Harness Racing Association

Barney Joyce Memorial Entries

♞ The Barney Joyce Memorial 3 Year Old Championship ♞

Heats & Finals at Portmarnock Raceway
Sat & Sun 29th & 30th July 2017

Colts/Geldings division Purse €15,000
€10,000 to the winner
Sponsored by the Joyce Family

Fillies Division estimated purse €8000*

€5,000 to the winner
Sponsored by Lisadell Equine Hospital

Entry Form

Terms & Conditions apply!

IHRA – STAGBI Notice……

Following a recent meeting between the IHRA & STAGBI  it has been agreed between both parties that a temporary concession on the current STAGBI Stud Book transfer fee of £50 sterling (€60)per horse will be reduced to £25 (€30) up to the 14th February 2017. This concession was sought on the basis that it now appears that there are still a considerable number of Broodmares for which Covering Certificates have been applied for to the IHRA that have still not been Stud Book transferred to allow registration of their 2017 progeny. This concession will also apply for any Stallions and race horses that have not yet been transferred.

It has also been agreed that the IHRA will only issue Covering Certificates for the 2016 breeding season forward for Stallions standing at Stud and/or resident in Ireland and any retrospective certificates for registered Stallions will be issued by STAGBI, this course of action is to ensure the integrity of both Stud Books going forward.

STAGBI  Mating Certificates for Stallions owned and/or resident in Ireland will only be issued up to and including the 2015 breeding season.


VDM entries

  • Diamond Creek Farms Vincent Delaney Memorial Fillies Final
  • Hanover Shoe Farms Vincent Delaney Memorial Colt/Gelding Final
  • Alabar – Oakwood Three Year – Old Fillies Final
  • Alabar – Oakwood Three Year – Old Colts / Gelding Final
  • Yirribee Stud Paul Murtagh Four Year – Old Mares Final
  • Yirribee Stud Paul Murtagh Four Year – Old Horse Final


2016 the year that was………………

With the 2016 season well and truly concluded we take a look back over the highlights of the year past for harness racing in Ireland.

  • A record in excess of half a million euro in prize money (€514,000) was achieved in 2016 with increases in all three geographic regions.
  • 46 individual race days with 360 individual races.
  • 340 competing horses and just short of 2,500 individual starts.
  • All the major racing festivals the Vincent Delaney, Barney Joyce & Red John Memorials see record increases in prize money, competitors and visitors.
  • January 2016 Ireland becomes a full member of UET.
  • Dundalk Stadium hosts four International style meetings which were lived streamed to Australia in conjunction with SIS with the first ever on course Tote Betting for harness racing in Ireland.
  • Dundalk Stadium September 25th the first ever International broadcast and wagered Irish harness racing meeting in conjunction with Racing & Wagering Western Australia (RWWA) returned a better that expected betting revenue figure in the given circumstances.
  • A team of 6 French Drivers compete in a race series at Dundalk Stadium against Irish Drivers.
  • Sean Kane represents Ireland at the Prix de Rencontres International race at Paris Vincennes in December.
  • Ricky Hanson & Alan Richardson receive the prestigious award for the leading Irish owned Trotteur Francais horse of 2016 Vichy De Moem at the International Awards ceremony in Paris Vincennes December 2016.
  • The IHRA announces a new 3 Year Old Trotteur Francais Stakes series for 2017 with an estimated total purse of €125,000. With the first consignment of 26 two year olds purchased and shipped to Ireland in December the remainder of the order of approximately 50 in total will be fulfilled in January together with a supplementary stock of some 20 race horses.
  • Le Trot/PMU announces the first trial PMU fixture to be held in Ireland in 2017.
  • The Minister for Agriculture announces the appointment of International Consultancy firm Indicon to do an economic study and review on the Irish Harness Racing sector.

Looking ahead for 2017 the IHRA expects the prize money barrier of €700,000 to be achieved based on the current projections of €435,000 for Trotters and €270,000 for Pacers, with increases expected across the major festivals, the Vincent Delaney, the Barney Joyce and the Red John Memorials and the addition of another two day festival in June the Grendon Memorial together with the PMU meeting at Dundalk and some other possible projects still in the pipeline.

With the economic study expected to be concluded in early 2017 which hopefully results in the first ever Government funding for the Harness Racing sector, the provision of a much needed all weather facility for Cork is a matter of priority together with an International standard racing venue.

The target for 2018 is the magic €1 Million mark as the ever changing landscape of harness racing enters a new era………..its onwards and upwards.

IHRA Notice………….

The Irish Harness Racing Association Ltd was incorporated as a Company Limited by Guarantee in May 2015 following approval from the three existing Clubs and the nomination of 6 Directors, there are no shareholders in this company and it is effectively owned by the members at any given point. There were a number of compelling reasons to change the structure to a Limited Company formation which had been discussed on numerous occasions over the past ten years or more and these include Government funding and Stud Book approval.

In late 2015 the IHRA were approved by the Department of Agriculture as the Passport issuing authority to operate the Stud Books for the Standardbred breed both Trotter & Pacer in Ireland. 

This was the first official recognition of the Standardbred breed in Ireland as none of the Irish horses that currently hold STAGBI passports are recorded in Ireland’s National Equine Database which is now a requirement under law as is equine premises registration and the recording of transfer of ownership.

To rectify this inequity it became a prerequisite for the Irish Harness Racing Association to develop its own Stud Book as part of the process of developing the harness racing sector in Ireland to an International standard.

The IHRA entered into a working agreement with STAGBI in January 2016 to facilitate a smooth transition from the previous arrangement whereby STAGBI issued the passports for horses born in both Ireland and Great Britain. It is expressly agreed between both parties in this agreement that each country would issue the passports for all horses born in their respective countries from January 2016 forward. Any deviation from this policy would compromise the integrity of the Stud Book data for both organisations and would not be in line with best practice among International Trotting Associations. 

This matter has been clarified by the UET in recent days, it is a matter for the Racing Authorities of each jurisdiction to decide that the horses born in each country are entered in a Stud Book recognised by the competent authority in each jurisdiction, in Ireland’s case the IHRA is both the racing authority and competent authority for Passport issuing.

In 2016 funding of approximately €20,000 has been approved by the Department of Agriculture to the IHRA for a number of specific projects related to our Stud Book with the first payment having been received this week, the future funding for other such projects will be an ongoing matter with the benefits accruing to the development of the harness racing sector for the whole of Ireland.

To date approximately 50 of the new Irish passports have been produced, the process whilst getting off to a slow start with a number of delays due to a variety of factors many of which were outside the direct control of the IHRA the situation is now much improved.

We would like to remind owners of horses to be registered that it is imperative to have the dam of the progeny is transferred from the STAGBI Stud Book in the first instance, failure in this regard is the current primary cause of delays producing passports and also the historic non compliance with the transfer of ownership process in another contributory factor.

All standardbred Stallions standing at Stud in Ireland are also required to be transferred from the STAGBI Stud Book as are the existing racing stock of horses.

The IHRA will issue covering certificates for the 2016 season subject to the mares in question already having a DNA profile on record or alternatively furnishing a new hair sample for DNA analysis, the objective here is to speed up the process of registration in 2017 when foal applications are submitted and also to avoid registration issues caused by the death of a mare at the point of foaling.

We would further like to advise owners that under no circumstance will any application that is sent directly to Horse Sport Ireland be processed, all applications must be sent to the IHRA Office in the first instance for verification and preparation of additional data that is required as per the terms of the IHRA / HSI processing agreement.

Integrity Testing 2016

The Irish Harness Racing Association have taken 94 random samples for Integrity purposes across a range of 45 individual race days in 2016 and followed this up with a random testing process at laboratory level of some 34 of these samples with the remainder being held in storage by the testing Laboratory.

Two samples taken at Annaghmore Raceway were deemed to be void and were consequently not analysed as they did not comply with the minimum sample packaging and paperwork requirements.

All 34 samples analysed to date for prohibited substances have returned Negative results. There has been full compliance with this random process at both of Ireland’s premier venues Portmarnock Raceway and Dundalk Stadium where the minimum of three random samples has been achieved on most occasions.

The process of random sampling is achieved at the race tracks by drawing from sealed envelopes containing the the race numbers which are opened by the Veterinary Surgeon on duty after the start of the first race with the remaining non selected sealed envelopes held by Stewards for verification purposes at the end of the race meeting.
The process of random testing is done at laboratory level where the decision is made by testing staff to select the require number of samples to be analysed on any given occasion.

Operating within very restricted budgetary constraints we feel that the levels achieved in 2016 are well above the minimum requirements for a sport that is essentially self funded and our figures compare favorably with our counterparts in Great Britain where there were some 50 samples analyzed at Laboratory level.

2017 will see some major new developments in this area subject to Government funding for the industry.

Click  here to download full list  of samples-taken-2016

World class……………..for the record

Vichy De Moem sets a new 2 Mile (3,200 meters) World Record for Trotters on a half mile track (800 meters) at Portmarnock Raceway for trainer/driver Alan Richardson.

The splits 30.95, 30.86, 32.69, 30.73, 31.33, 2vichy-de-moem9.55, 30.0, 29.6.

Portmarnock Raceway end of Season

Click Here to Download RaceCard