Sunday's high-profile fixture at Punchestown is subject to a precautionary inspection at 8am on raceday morning.

The John Durkan Memorial Punchestown Chase is the feature event on a fantastic seven-race card, but the meeting is under threat.

Punchestown's racing manager Richie Galway reports the track to be raceable, however, and is hopeful of beating the weather.

He said: "It's a precautionary inspection as we're perfectly raceable at the moment. We had 13 millimetres of rain overnight and it's still raining. We've not get any problems with wind, it's just the rain.

"They're talking about another 10 or 20 millimetres of rain today, but the track is taking it well and I'm hopeful we'll be all right.

"I'd be very disappointed if we didn't race."

Meanwhile, Saturday’s seven race National Hunt card at Navan Racecourse has been cancelled due to the severe weather battering Ireland.

High winds and heavy rains, that led Met Éireann to issue several red weather warnings – the highest warning they have, forced the Turf Club to call off the Christmas meeting in Meath.

Sunday’s jumps meeting in Cork, which has taken much of the brunt of Hurricane Desmond, was postponed earlier in the week and will now be run off on Sunday, December 13 instead.

There was a 9.30 inspection of Navan Racecourse and despite initial hopes that the meeting could go ahead, the decision was taken to pull the plug.

The ground was described as heavy following 20 millimeters, nearly an inch, of rain overnight, though the high winds also contributed to the eventual cancellation.

Turf Club press officer Cliff Noone said: "Unfortunately today's meeting at Navan has been cancelled.

"They were due to inspect at 9.30am, but the situation has worsened and is due to get worse again through the morning.

"There is no problem with the ground, the track is fine, but they have gale force winds and it's not safe for racing to take place."