Ayr Abandoned Thursday 21st September

This afternoon's meeting at Ayr has been abandoned due to waterlogging.

The Scottish venue was due to stage the first fixture of the popular three-day William Hill Ayr Gold Cup Festival, with the Gold Cup itself taking place on Saturday. Today's eight-race card was set to feature the William Hill Doonside Cup, but officials called a precautionary inspection after the track was hit by 15 millimetres of rain in the last 24 hours and with part of the track waterlogged, they had no option but to call off proceedings.

Clerk of the course Graeme Anderson said: "We were expecting the amount of rain we had, but we weren't expecting it would do this to the track. We've walked the entire track and it's absolutely fine in the back straight, but when you get to the two-and-a-half-furlong mark there's a patch of ground that is false and muddy. I'm not even 80 per cent happy we could race on it. I'm not thinking about the next two days in coming to this decision, I'm just not comfortable it would be safe for the horses and jockeys and we won't take any risks."

Friday's card is subject to an 8am inspection, but Anderson is hopeful racing will go ahead.

"We'll work on this patch of ground today and the forecast is a lot better going forward," Anderson added. "We're forecast one or two showers tonight, but that should amount to only two millimetres, so hopefully we'll be fine."

Anderson confirmed officials were in talks with the British Horseracing Authority about whether the Doonside Cup could be saved and moved to another card.