Front Page News – “Under Trotter’s Orders”

Our "LIVE" Pig Racing event has made front page news in this week's Cork Independent.

Check out the review on www.corkindependent.com

A troupe of pigs from Omagh, Co Offaly are in the final stages of training for the Cheltenham of the pig world which will take place in Watergrasshill over the June bank holiday weekend.

The pigs are making the journey to the rebel county to help raise funds for a local school and soccer club and whoever is first over the loin could make big bucks.

On Saturday 1 June the pigs will take part in a series of races in Watergrasshill as part of the bank holiday weekend celebrations. Owner Austin Shortt says the chubby chops love to run.

“The pigs are very well looked after especially in the run up to a race. The races, which will last around 10 seconds each, will see the pigs travel a track of 80 metres”.

Punters will not be disappointed as there will be a build-up to each race introducing each pig and also a commentary so spectators can see how the pigs did in previous races and will even be able to place small bets using the tote system. “It’s just like a night at the dogs”, says Austin.

Mission Impossible

“The pigs are trained to music”, explains Austin. “They start the race in the back of the lorry. When we play the music the pigs know that they have to start running. We have them trained to run to the song Mission Impossible”, says Austin.

The pigs will exercise their trotters every 20 minutes or so and there will be an opportunity to place bets beforehand. The contestants then run on a soft carpet and will have to jump over a series of hurdles to complete the race. They are rewarded with a treat when they cross the finish line.

Austin says the idea came from his father who heard of pig racing taking place in Canada. “I wanted to do something different and pig racing is a great novelty. The course can be set up within 10 minutes and doesn’t involved very strenuous work”, he says.

Watergrasshill fundraising organiser Dave Hogan says the community is looking forward to the arrival of the teddy jockeys and their pigs for the weekend. “It’s something fun that will be very entertaining”, he says.

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