Home to the only racecourse in South Yorkshire and two of the UK’s 31 Group 1 flat races, Doncaster Racecourse is one of the oldest established tracks for British horse racing – with records dating back to the 16th Century. The venue plays host to both flat and jump racing with a strong accent on stamina and courage of the runners and riders.
Following its recent £32 million redevelopment, Doncaster is now a state-of-the-art racing venue and is the worthy location of the world’s oldest classic horse race: the St. Leger Stakes. It’s the fifth and final Classic of the UK flat racing season and takes place on the well-established Town Moor course.
The St. Leger Festival has the distinction of ending the flat racing season on turf each year. The Group 2 Doncaster Cup is also held on the third day of the St. Leger Festival. It is one of the world’s oldest surviving horse races, pre-dating the St. Leger Stakes by a decade.
Despite the redevelopment, Doncaster’s racing surface has remained much the same: a large, pear-shaped course of almost two miles in distance, with a long four-and-a-half furlong straight. A lot of sprint flat races at Doncaster are run on its mile-long straight, with its very flat course providing some of the very best sprint racing conditions in the UK.
In terms of the highlights from the National Hunt jump season, Doncaster’s Skybet Chase in January is always a keenly contested race.
Geegeez says: Doncaster is arguably one of the fairest courses in the country, with next to no undulations providing excellent racing conditions for horses that can really gallop and eat up the ground.
“There’s significant draw bias at Doncaster when the ground is soft. Lower numbers tend to perform better, but on faster ground the draw has little bearing on the race outcome
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