Footage: Baldoyle Racecourse(1931) International Cross Country Championship

I’ve always associated Baldoyle racecourse just with the horses and famously being the scene of the “Battle of Baldoyle” in 1940 where Lugs Branigan made his name. These scenes though show the competitors in the International  Cross Country Championships from March 1931, where Tim Smythe became the first Irishman to ever win. Smythe was from Feakle, Co. Clare and ran for “O’Callaghan’s Mills”, a club he set up himself. The winner was congratulated by president William T. Cosgrave who attended the race. Baldoyle racecourse was a hugely popular racecourse from the 1820’s up until its closure in the 1970’s.  Tim Smythe went on into politics after athletics and fair green in Ennis was renamed in his honour.

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