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14 Feb 2011 | 19:15
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Cheltenham call Monday checkHeadlines
Cheltenham Racecourse

Officials at Cheltenham will inspect the track at 3pm on Monday to assess the prospects for their New Year's Day meeting.

The ground is reported to be heavy and saturated in places at present, which has left some areas of the track unraceable.

Further rain is forecast but clerk of the course Simon Claisse is eager to see how much rain they get before making a decision.

"We have a beautiful sunny morning, but we had 10 millimetres of rain yesterday and overnight and there are parts of the course, we are talking about the two hills, that are saturated and you can get a stick in anywhere between 12 and 18 inches," he told At the Races.

"We wouldn't be raceable today. Regrettably the forecast overnight and tomorrow is further rain, but we just have to hope.

"It has happened occasionally that forecast rain hasn't materialised and if we had a dry 48 hours, there is a chance we could get this meeting on.

"We are going to give it that chance. We are going to take another look at 3pm tomorrow. The rain is set to clear by mid-afternoon and if it doesn't come, we've got a squeak of a chance.

"This course will not take anymore rainfall now. We can just hope in the next 24 hours we somehow miss it.

"The rain is said to be starting late this evening, light rain through the early hours of tomorrow then get heavier during daylight hours and clearing mid-afternoon which is why we have to time that inspection for 3pm.

"If we get sufficient rain early enough to make a call, we will let everyone know as soon as we can."

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