14th December 2021



Galway Racecourse, traditionally home to Ireland’s largest horse racing festival, the iconic ‘Galway Races’ had a busy 2021 despite a challenging year. In accordance with Covid protocol’s there was lot’s happening all year long at the Ballybrit venue, and not just with horses!


Over Half a Million Visitors

In what has been one of the busiest years on record, the Galway Racecourse attracted a footfall of over half a million people who visited for a various array of events that ranged from those attending the Summer Festival, the HSE vaccination centre, the Medical Technology Ireland Exhibition, the Christmas Elf Town experience, Renmore Gymnastics children’s classes, Park and Ride, Castlegar Cross Country,  plus the Killanin Stand was home to primary school students from Scoil Bhríde Menlo who resided in the racecourse for a few months while their own school underwent refurbishment following flooding.


Community Support

During the year, the team at Galway Racecourse were proud to fundraise and create awareness for a number of hard-working charities including The National Breast Cancer Research Institute, Pieta House, the Irish Horse Welfare Trust, and most recently with ‘Team Hope’ who used the jockey’s changing rooms to prepare over 7,000 shoe boxes that will be delivered into the hands of children in the Congo just in time for Christmas.


Commenting on the year Michael Moloney, Chief Executive of Galway Racecourse said, “like many businesses’ we could never have predicted what was to come down the track this year but thankfully, in quick succession we managed to make the best of the situation. The racecourse is proud to support Irish Racing and be at the heart of the local community here in Galway, helping where and when we could. Our brand values of the love of horse racing, friendships, community family and fun, feed every decision we make and the things we do here in Ballybrit.”


He continued, “to end the year on a high with lots of happy families visiting Santa Claus for Elf Town has once again brought about a special magic to Galway Racecourse. Who better to visit us here as we wrap up the year than the main man himself, Santa Claus, his elves and two VIP’s, Santa’s reindeers Dasher and Dancer. We look forward with optimism to 2022 and welcoming everyone back to the Galway Races for some cracking racing plus lots more besides. We are planning in earnest, and very much look forward to sharing our preparation with you over the next few months. On behalf of the team here in Ballybrit, may I wish all our customer’s a very Happy Christmas and a massive thank you for your continuous loyalty and support”.


Looking Ahead #GiddyforGalway

For more information on the 2022 Galway Races Summer Festival that takes place from Monday 25th to Sunday 31st July check out Thank you.




PHOTOGRAPH ATTACHED: Michael Moloney CEO of Galway Racecourse pictured with VIP guests at the track, Santa’s reindeer Dasher and Dancer.  Photographer: Taken by staff at Galway Racecourse.



  • The Galway Races Festival contributes more than €58 million to the economy of Galway City and the local region, research by the Marketing Department at UCD Smurfit Graduate School of Business established in 2002 (the last economic impact study undertaken by the Galway Race Committee).
  • Over €23 million is spent in the immediate locality on accommodation, travel, eating out, entertainment & beverages. Businesses throughout the city experience massive increase in turnover during race week, which translates into additional employment in the city, in addition to the swell of employment at the racecourse in the run up to and during the week-long Festival.
  • The vision of the Galway Races Committee and Management of the Racecourse is to ensure that the racecourse remains a market leader, continuing to grow and evolve as a racing destination and maintains its contribution to the economic life of Galway City and the wider region.