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20th Feb 2020

Gardaí launch investigation into four-lane motorway sulky race

Rudi Kinsella

Sulky race

It is believed that the sulky race took place in Naas at some point over the weekend.

A sulky race which took up four lanes of a motorway in Naas is currently under investigation by Gardaí.

Sulky racing, otherwise known as harness racing, is a form of horse racing in which a group of horses race while pulling a two-wheeled cart, called a sulky, which is occupied by a driver.

A video has emerged on social media of the race, which is said to have taken place at some stage over the weekend, believed to be in the early hours of the morning.

The video in question shows two horse and carts travelling at speed down a lane of the N7 motorway in Naas, with a number of cars driving behind them.

In a statement issued to JOE, An Garda Síochána said that they are aware of the incident.

A spokesperson said: “Gardaí in Rathcoole are aware of the video being circulated on social media and enquires are ongoing at this time.

“If any persons are aware or have information in relation to the incident, please contact your local Garda station.”

The ISPCA has released a statement condemning those responsible for the incident, while also calling for the Government to clamp down on the issue.

“The ISPCA is shocked and appalled at a video being circulated on social media which shows a dangerous sulky road race that took place on the N7 in Citywest, Dublin recently.

“The ISPCA has been calling on the Government for some time to deal with not only the public safety issue but also the serious animal welfare concerns caused by sulky racing and training.”

“Driving horses, particularly young horses, on hard road surfaces can result in serious injuries and collisions with vehicles has resulted in the death of horses in the past. The ISPCA believes that the Department of Agriculture should work with local authorities to identify safe, off-road areas for sulky users where the activity can be regulated appropriately.

“An Garda Síochána already have sufficient powers under the Road Traffic Act to deal with the reckless and dangerous driving seen in the video and local authorities have powers to seize any horse that is not microchipped. However, we recognise that it would have required significant resources to deal with the incident which featured in the video.”

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