Irish rental firm O’Carroll Haulage and Crane Hire used a modular spreader frame to lift two famous bronze statues and place them into temporary storage while a major construction project takes place at the Curragh Racecourse, located on the Curragh plain in County Kildare, Ireland.
Co. Limerick-based O’Carroll utilised the Modulift CMOD modular spreader frame and supporting rigging gear below the hook of a 100t Palfinger PK 100002 Performance loader crane mounted on an articulated truck. The statues were both lifted, one at a time, onto the vehicle, secured and transported together to an on-site storage area approx. 500m away, where they were both offloaded. A lift area and pathway for the vehicle were prepared with hardcore prior to the lifting team’s arrival onsite.
John Sisk & Son Limited, the main contractor for the work, presented O’Carroll with a challenging scope of work to remove the statues, weighing 6.7t and 4.5t respectively. It was considered to protect them under covering for the duration of the work but they were deemed of great historical importance to the course.
The larger statue, complete with jockey, commemorates the legendary Vintage Crop, a British-bred, Irish-trained thoroughbred racehorse best known for becoming the first overseas runner to win Australia's premier race, the Melbourne Cup. The lighter statue represents Nijinsky, known in the United States as Nijinsky II, a Canadian-bred, Irish-trained thoroughbred and sire. Both statues had to be removed still attached to their concrete foundations.
Maurice O’Carroll, director at O’Carroll Haulage, explained: “The only option was to bore through the concrete footings and cradle the loads with slings; there were no jacking points so that wasn’t a viable solution. Four 3t slings were good for 12t capacity and, combined with the frame, we were able to create a stable and efficient lifting solution. The rig performed perfectly, as it has done when we’ve employed this solution in the past; the CMOD is a brilliant invention.”
The crane and rigging equipment was sourced from O’Carroll stock but its familiar partner and Modulift distributor in Ireland, Irlequip, provided the modular spreader frame. The CMOD 12 was used in this instance but the range spans CMOD 6 to CMOD 110, boasting 300t capacity. They are commonly used for lifts where there are height restrictions as the height of the rig is lower than, say, a one-over-two solution.
The statues were lifted from the racecourse’s parade ring, which will be transformed by the new development. A new ring will ensure that more patrons can share in the excitement and build up to races. The new Curragh will also see the creation of world-class facilities on a par with anywhere in the world. The centrepiece of the redevelopment will see the creation of a major new grandstand that will incorporate five star corporate facilities.
The construction and utilities marketplaces primarily busy the fleet of loaders plus Liebherr and Grove mobile cranes, but O’Carroll said the Curragh project epitomised the company’s “anything, anytime, anywhere” ethos. “Business is picking up but diverse applications like this challenge us to remain innovative in our above and below-the-hook solutions.”