“Kinsley raced through World War II, so neither the Beast from the East, nor the antis were going to stop us last week.”
The Yorkshire circuit were unique in not losing a single meeting last week despite suffering some of the worst of the weather.
Joint promoter John Curran said: “The snow started just before racing on Tuesday. It was really powdery and started to settle but we had all hands on deck sweeping it away. The first race was four minutes late but the track was soft and spongy and there were no injuries. Not even a sore toe.
“By the Wednesday morning there was probably five inches of snow but we knew the minus five temperatures were on the way so we left the snow as insulation. I was up at 5.30am on Thursday morning and the big snow clear began.
“We had all the staff plus a group of owners and trainers all getting stuck in. We laid on food and hot drinks and it took five hours to clear the snow. The track was then thoroughly salted.
“The racing surface was perfect but the big issue for the Friday was not the track, but the trainers getting here for the BAGS meeting. So we looked at the card and took off 49 runners from the more distant kennels and Andrew, our racing manger, completely re-graded the card using local runners. We ran the injuries and did not get a single injury.
“By the Friday night the thaw had set-in and we phone around to check on the more distant trainers. We got the ‘all clear’ and graded their dogs for the Saturday.
“Throughout it all, we had antis phoning up the stadium and telling us we were cruel to be racing. In fact, there were a number of personal threats and intimidation made against our lady here who takes the bookings. But I notice on social media that a group of antis stood outside one of the flapping tracks with dogs in the worst of the weather. The poor animals must have been freezing. Typical hypocrisy and lies.
“Looking back, we were very lucky with how the fixtures fell against the weather – but it has been a particularly bad winter. We used more salt in February than ever before. In an average winter, we would normally put down ten tons. In October, we had over 35 tons in stock but were down to three tons last week and have taken receipt of another 15 tons.
“In the old days, as an independent with grass straights and sanded bends, we would have simply covered the circuit with a thick blanket of straw and the going would have been two second slow. Things have certainly progressed.”