Sandown’s ability to host high-quality jump and flat racing all-year round makes it one of the most popular racecourses in the South East of England. On the flat course, Sandown plays host to the Group 1 Coral-Eclipse in July, while the Tingle Creek and Bet365 Gold Cup feature prominently in the jumps calendar.
Five separate horses have won the Coral-Eclipse on two occasions, with jockey, Lester Piggott the most successful jockey with seven wins; the most recent of which dating back to 1977.
The flat and National Hunt circuits are run right-handed on an oval-shaped track of one mile and five furlongs in distance; including a straight uphill run-in to the finish line of four furlongs. The jumps course features 11 fences per circuit, with a water jump midway around the course.
The back straight fences are some of the most exciting obstacles in UK racing, with the Railway Fences – three hurdles taken in quick succession – a particular highlight.
Sandown is very much suited to those long striding, galloping types that can handle the steep incline on the home straight with relative ease. For shorter sprint races, Sandown uses a straight five furlong track which is uphill all the way and certainly takes some getting for maidens and those with no form at Sandown.
Sandown Park offers spectacular views across Heathrow Airport and London’s biggest landmarks such as Wembley Stadium, The Gherkin and Canary Wharf.
Geegeez says: “On the straight five furlong course there is often a distinct draw bias with lower drawn numbers far more likely to prevail than those on the far side of the track in smaller fields. In larger fields higher numbers have always performed best, particularly on softer ground.
“For steeplechasers, races are by no means in the bag on the home straight. The uphill climb and its two final fences mean the 220-yard run-in can change the entire complexion of a race.”
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