Located in the southwest Irish town of Tralee, Kingdom Greyhound Stadium has been providing the locals with quality dog racing action ever since opening for business back in 1930. Laying on a regular programme of three meetings a week, the County Kerry venue provides everything you need for an excellent night out at the dogs, including a restaurant, fast food facilities, and of course a bar. Throw in the famed Irish craic, and you have a track well worth a visit.
What’s On Offer at Tralee?
Greyhound fans typically have the choice of three meetings a week at Kingdom Greyhound Stadium, with racing taking place on Tuesday and Friday evenings, and Saturday afternoons.
- Tuesday – 10 races, Doors Open: 6pm, First Race: 6:53pm, Last Race: 9:22pm
- Friday – 11 races, Doors Open: 6:30pm, First Race: 7:46pm, Last Race: 10:15pm
- Saturday – 10 races, Doors Open: 1:45pm, First Race: 2:45pm, Last Race: 5:10pm
Note that on certain weekends throughout the year, the Saturday fixture will switch from the afternoon to the evening, with the times mirroring those of the Friday night meeting. As such, always check with the course ahead of a planned visit.
- Circuit Length – 476y
- Sprint Distance – 325y
- Middle Distances – 500y – 525y (standard) – 550y – 570y
- Stayers Distance – None
- Marathon Distance – 750y
What Can You Expect?
Normal admission is usually a very decent €10 for adults, with a discounted rate of €5 on offer for students and OAPs. Children under the age of 14 are free with a full-paying adult. All adult, student and OAP tickets come with a free race card. Standard admission gives visitors access to the fast food facilities, bar, trackside viewing area and non-reserved seating in the grandstand.
In addition to the standard entry options, the track also offers a range of special offers throughout the season. One example being entry, race card, and burger and chips for just €14.50. These deals can vary slightly from month to month but are always worth keeping an eye out for. Most special offer packages are only available to groups of four or more and must be booked and paid for in advance.
Racegoers bringing the family along may wish to take advantage of the excellent value Family Deal. This is priced at a total of €44.50 and the package includes admission for two adults and two children and also grants visitors two race cards, plus meals for two adults and two children from the fast-food outlet.
Those seeking a more formal dining experience alongside the action on the track have the option of booking a table in the Grandstand Restaurant. This provides great views of the racing in a comfortable setting and more complete meal. This option is open to parties of two or more and restaurant bookings must be made in advance.
In addition, on booking you must pre-pay €20 per head. However, this charge cost covers your table for the evening as well as normal entry and a race card. On the night, your food and drink is ordered separately but the full €20 value of your pre-payment acts as a deposit and is deducted from the bill.
For something in between fast food and a full sit-down meal, parties of 10 or more can opt for a buffet package. Instead of choosing from the a la carte offering, you will have a very decent range of finger food to tuck into and this will cost €20 per person. As with the deal above, this package also grants you entry, a reserved table for the evening and a race card (as well as the food package of course).
How to Get There
The stadium address is Kingdom Greyhound Stadium, Brewery Road, Oakview, Tralee, County Kerry, V92 X763. Racegoers heading to the track from the UK have the option of flying into Kerry Airport, which lies around a 19-minute drive from the stadium, or taking the Holyhead to Dublin Ferry Crossing.
For those completing the journey by car, the main approach roads to Tralee are the N86 and N69, with the track then lying between the R556 and R878. Upon arrival at the track, motorists will find ample free parking in the stadium’s car park, with additional on-street parking also available nearby.
Tralee Train station is less than a 10-minute walk from the venue and receives regular services from Dublin Heuston. Alternatively, the local bus services of the 13, 14, 40, 271, 272, 273, 274, 275, 278, 279, 283, 284, 314 and 290 all stop at Tralee bus station, which sits right beside the train station.
How to Get in Touch
- Tel: – +353 66 716 9600
- Email: – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Twitter: – @KingdomDogTrack
What Else Do I Need to Know?
The first greyhound track in the Tralee locale opened in Ardfelt just outside the town in August 1929. That venture however proved to be very short-lived, and by 1930 it had been replaced by this venue in the more central Oakview Village area.
Staging its first meeting on the 9th of April 1930, the greater accessibility of the track – in comparison with the Ardfelt site – helped to make it an immediate hit with local racing fans. Originally known as Oakview Park, the track later changed its name to Tralee Greyhound Stadium, before switching to its current title of Kingdom Park Greyhound Stadium.
The track certainly seems to inspire loyalty amongst its racing managers; MJ Hannafin fulfilled that role from the track’s opening through to 1950, and his replacement Kevin Laide put in a 30-year stint between 1950 and 1980.
Between them, Hannafin and Laide managed to really put the track on the map. Introducing a quality programme of races, including the Harp Lager Stakes, Bloom 500, the Rose of Tralee, and also the Kingdom Puppy Cup, the venue began to attract a number of legendary dogs. The likes of Spanish Battleship, Ballyhennessy Seal, and Patricias Hope all strutting their stuff around the Kingdom Park bends. The original manager was later honoured when the MJ Hannafin Memorial Cup was added to the calendar.
Despite the consistent quality on the track, the stadium’s facilities had remained largely unaltered throughout its history, and by the turn of the millennium needed a serious facelift.
Luckily for Tralee, the year 2000 saw the Irish Greyhound Board undertake a wide-ranging series of upgrades across the many tracks under its control. As a result, Kingdom Park benefited from an extensive facelift to all public areas, including the trackside bar and restaurant.
Continuing the cycle of improvements, the high-profile contests of the Juvenile Classic and Race of Champions were added to the programme in 2007 and 2008 respectively, followed by further IGB investment in 2012. All of this has served to enhance the already excellent reputation of one of Irish greyhound racing’s most popular tracks.