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14 Feb 2011 | 19:15
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Slim hope for FakenhamHeadlines
Fakenham racecourse

Fakenham's meeting on Thursday already looks in grave doubt as the course is covered in four inches of snow.

After nearly a week of freezing temperatures and with no sign of a let-up, there is little chance of the snow shifting in time. To compound matters, more is forecast.

"I've been away since Thursday and just got back and nothing has changed at all," said clerk of the course David Hunter.

"We have not had the extreme cold we had early on last week, but the forecast is for more snow and I'm pretty sure we will be able to make the decision one way or the other on Tuesday.

"It might depend on Sunday night whether we do get snow and what the temperatures are. If it deteriorates I would bring the inspection forward if need be. We just have to hope and pray the forecasters may have got something wrong."

Looking further ahead to next weekend, Cheltenham and Doncaster are pinning their hopes on milder weather coming to the rescue.

It is Festival Trials Day on Saturday at Cheltenham, which also features the Victor Chandler Chase, rearranged after Ascot was abandoned.

The going is described as soft and is not frozen under the covers. Although it is set to remain cold with occasional snow through to midweek, milder temperatures are due towards the weekend.

Doncaster race on Friday and Saturday, with the Sky Bet Chase the feature on day two, as well as Haydock's Champion Hurdle Trial transferred to the South Yorkshire track.

The course is currently frozen with a covering of snow. Temperatures will stay below freezing until Tuesday, when a slight improvement is expected.

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