Haydock Park

Haydock Park is located in the metropolitan county of Merseyside, North West England. It lies between the four towns of Newton-le-Willows, Golborne, Haydock and Ashton-in-Makerfield, which naturally gives it a good patronage from residents of these areas. Jockey Club Racecourses are the owners of the dual-type course.

History

The present day course has been operational since 1899, but the area of the park had been used for racing purposes even in the 1830s, after a break in the decade before. The memory of Queen of Trump’s win at Newton in 1936 is still widely talked about in the history of the Haydock.

Course

Haydock Park is a dual race type track, with both flat and National Hunt courses. The flat course is around one mile and four furlongs in distance, mostly gentle gradient with a rise in one section. The National Hunt course is much trickier, as the tree-dotting nature of the park requires jockey to have good conversance and be totally alert.

Most areas of the oval course are left handed.

It is a relatively busy course with 32 race days annually. Its four grandstands alongside 33 private viewing suites make it a diverse choice course for the racegoer, a factor that has widely popularised the destination among patrons worldwide. Race goers are expected to maintain a smart casual dress code.

Races

The dual-type nature of the course makes it a busy destination pretty much throughout the year. Races begin in January, but the first one to really light up the track is the Febraury Grand National trials. Competition then takes a two month break and resumes in May, running through to September. The Temple Stakes, Sprint Cup and the traditional Old Newton Cup are the highlights of this particular period.

Betfair chase and the Tommy Whittle chase close the calendar year in November and December, respectively.

Hamilton Park

hamilton parkHamilton Park racecourse is located in the town of Hamilton, within South Lanarkshire, Scotland. It is nine miles south of Glasgow City. It is owned and run by the Hamilton Park Trust, with races screening on Racing UK.

History

Horseracing in the town has been alive since 1782, so much that it is part of the Scottish culture. The current course was however not in existence before 1926, when the first race was run here.

The course has been known to be a place of firsts in many aspects of racing within the UK. In 1947, it hosted the first ever evening meeting, a trend that soon caught on within racing circles. Not one to stick to normalcy, Hamilton then went ahead to host the first morning meeting in 1971.

Hamilton faced the danger of closure going into the 1970s due to financial constraints, but was then taken over by The Trust in 1973 with a focus on improving its appearance and performance.

The course

Hamilton is a flat races track. It has a gentle gradient, with a lengthy run in of five furlongs that goes uphill at the finish.

The course is famed for its exquisite facilities, which are in constant upgrade thanks to the Trust’s policy of pumping all profits into the redevelopment of the venue. And these profits are not small amounts of money, at one time going up to £2.5 million. There is an ongoing upgrade plan in 2017 estimated to cost £ 800, 000 mostly to tweak the catering and restaurant facilities to suit the social race goer.

Access to the course is possible by road rail or air. It is well signposted on the surrounding roads. Hamilton West Train Station is only fifteen minutes’ walk from the course. Glasgow airport lies 21 miles away.

Races

Races are run here between the months of May and October. The Glasgow Stakes, run over 1-mile six-furlongs 16 yards is the venue’s headline race. Other races include the Lanark Silver Bell and the Scottish Stewards’ cup. The Braveheart Stakes was run here but got discontinued in 2015.