Dundalk is Ireland's only all-weather racing venue and, as such, one of the busiest racecourses in the land, especially during the winter months.
The Co Louth-based circuit doubles up with a greyhound track inside and it boasts everything required for the perfect evening of sporting entertainment.
Friday nights under the floodlights are what racing at Dundalk is best known for, with the weekly meeting a staple of the winter programme in Ireland.
Here's our guide to Dundalk racecourse.
|Friday Night's at Dundalk
|Dundalk Racecourse, Co Louth
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The all-weather track at Dundalk was opened in August 2007 in tandem with an existing greyhound racing circuit on the infield of the racecourse, thus ending a six-year hiatus after the turf track had been closed down.
The need for an all-weather surface in Ireland was clear and Horse Racing Ireland moved to make it happen at a location designed to make it feasible for trainers to visit from north, south, east and west.
The racecourse is only minutes from the M1, the main Dublin / Belfast road, and is less than 45 minutes to reach from Dublin or 60 minutes from Belfast.
The feature race of the year is the Group 3 Diamond Stakes over a mile-and-a-quarter which takes places in October and has been won by the likes of Mastercraftsman and Declaration Of War.
The Polytrack course is a left-handed, oval course, about ten furlongs in extent, with a run-in of about two-and-a-half furlongs.
A five-furlong chute joins the main course on the home bend just over three-and-a-half furlongs from the finish, while the mile start is in a short chute at the start of the back straight.
The home straight includes a cutaway some two-furlongs from the finishing line and this helps to ensure fairness for all in what are quite often races with at least ten runners.
A 14-horse maximum applies and the cutaway tends to mean races develop up the centre of the course in the home straight. The cutaway was introduced in 2013, six years after the track opened and Dundalk is now general considered to be a very fair all-weather racetrack.
All of Dundalk's Friday night fixtures are dual race nights, with horse racing and greyhound action combined, ensuring it's the only venue in Europe that provides both sports on the same evening.
The Co Louth stadium considers itself an entertainment venue, with a 400-seater restaurant that boasts views overlooking both horse and greyhound tracks which also has a panoramic view of the Cooley Mountains.
It has five bars, a self-service carvery, fast food options and after race entertainment making it the perfect stop for one of their famous Friday Nights.
Dundalk is host to more than 40 race meetings throughout the year, with Wednesday afternoons the traditional slot that most accompanies Friday evenings.
The View Restaurant offers a variety of raceday packages, while there are also finger food options for large groups alongside the Silks Carvery and the Bit & Bite Takeaway on racedays.
On Friday racedays, greyhound action begins 20 minutes after the final horse race, and all ticket holders are granted access to both meetings.