The Ultimate Guide to Nottingham Racecourse

NottinghamNottingham Racecourse is situated two miles east of Nottingham city centre, within the boundaries of Colwick Park, in the East Midlands of England. Horse racing in the vicinity of Nottingham first took place as early as 1689 on the Forest Racecourse, on which the Forest Recreation now stands, but the first meeting at Colwick Park, on land belonging to the former Colwick Hall estate, wasn't staged until 1892. In 1992, Nottingham Racecourse celebrated its centenary with the completion of a new members' stand, which was officially opened by Desert Orchid. Nottingham Racecourse originally staged both Flat and National Hunt racing but, despite a campaign by trainers, led by the late David Nicholson, National Hunt racing ceased in 1996. Nowadays, Nottingham stages 18 Flat racing fixtures between April and November.

For racegoers, Nottingham Racecourse offers the choice of the Premier Enclosure, priced at £16 per person on weekdays and £21 per person on weekends and evenings, or the Grandstand Enclosure, priced at £10 per person on weekdays and £15 per person on weekends and evenings. Concessions are available for senior citizens and students and admission is free for accompanied children.

For corporate events, including conferences, exhibitions, meetings and team building events, Nottingham Racecourse offers a purpose built conference and events centre, with a variety of flexible indoor space, as well as acres of outdoor space on grass and tarmac. The largest suite, the Centenary Suite, on the first floor of the Centenary Building, can accommodate up to 200 people, while the Owners & Trainers Suite, the Paddock Suite and the Syndicate Suite, amongst others, are suitable for smaller gatherings. All the indoor spaces benefit from excellent natural daylight and free Wi-Fi access and complementary parking for up to 400 vehicles is available.

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Getting there

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What's unique about the course at Nottingham?

Nottingham course
The round course at Nottingham is a left-handed, galloping oval, approximately a mile and a half around, with a relatively long, 4½-furlong straight.

The course is flat, except for slight undulations at the 2-furlong marker and, although the turn into the straight is sharp, the length of the straight means that big, long-striding horses are not necessarily disadvantaged.

There is also a straight 6-furlong course.

Notable Races and Events

Oh So SharpThe two most prestigious races of the year at Nottingham are the Betfred Barry Hills “Further Flight” Stakes, run over 1 miles 6 furlongs in April and the Weatherbys Bloodstock Insurance Kilvington Fillies' Stakes, run over 6 furlongs in May. The former is named in memory of Further Flight, a Pharly gelding who won 24 races for Lambourn trainer Barry Hills between 1989 and 1998, including this race twice, in 1996 and 1998.

In 1971, Stan Mellor became the first National Hunt jockey in history to ride 1,000 winners when he steered Ouzo, trained in Newmarket by Tom Jones, to victory in the Christmas Spirit Novices' Chase at Nottingham Racecourse.

In 1984,Tom Queally Sir Henry Cecil's filly Oh So Sharp, who went on to become the first horse since Meld in 1955 to win the fillies' “Triple Crown” of the 1,000 Guineas, the Oaks and the St. Leger in 1985, made a winning debut at Nottingham Racecourse. In 1998, Oath, also trained by Sir Henry Cecil, won his first race at Nottingham en route to victory in the Derby the following season.

Top Owners, Jockeys and Trainers

Tom Queally is the top jockey at Nottingham over the last five seasons with 16 winners from 105 rides, although he's just one ahead of Paul Hanagan with 15 winners from 114 rides.

Godolphin trainer Saeed bin Suroor has trained 20 winners from 54 runners at an impressive strike rate of 37% and tops the trainers' table for the same period, so it should come as no surprise that Godolphin is the leading owner with 25 winners from 92 runners.

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