Thanks to the marvellous venues and some of the most historic events in British horse racing, the exciting conclusion to the flat racing season always brings excitement and enthusiasm.

Throughout the country and even in far flung locations overseas, fans and followers of equestrian sports will be glued to their screens with eager anticipation, as these famous celebrations of thoroughbred horse racing get under the starters’ orders.

Glorious Goodwood, Goodwood

Held from 28 July to 1 August, in the height of summer, the Goodwood Estate in Sussex is home to one of the most picturesque venues in British horse racing. With sweeping views across the Sussex Downs and Chichester Plains, looking southwards, you can even see the Isle of Wight from this beautiful racecourse.

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Amidst a packed schedule every day, key races to look out for are the Stewards Cup and the Goodwood Cup, which are both highly competitive. However, the tentpole race at Glorious Goodwood is the Sussex Stakes, which is run over one mile and with a purse of just over £1 million up for grabs.

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Ebor Festival, York

From 19-22 August, York Racecourse plays host some of the most important flat races on the British calendar. For this reason alone, the Ebor Festival always generates plenty of interest amongst locals and international visitors alike, keen to enjoy the famed Yorkshire hospitality, just outside the historic and ancient cathedral city.

There is always plenty to keep fans entertained over the four days of the festival, with several key races that will be the focus of attention for betting online on horse racing. The Ebor Handicap is the race which lends the festival its name, always run on the fourth and final day. This year, Hamish at 8/1 and Fujaira Prince at 10/1 are the favourite runners.

St. Leger Festival, Doncaster

As one of the oldest racecourses in Britain, Doncaster has a rich equestrian history which dates back to the late 16th century. Amusingly, local authorities wanted to stop the races back then, claiming they attracted “ruffians” to the locality. Nevertheless, more than four centuries later, the oldest thoroughbred race in the world is still being held, and of course, will run again as part of the festival from 9 to 12 September this year.

This is the famed St. Leger Stakes, which first took place in 1776 and was later named after Anthony St. Leger, a famed army officer and local politician. From Allabaculia winning the very first race in 1776, to Frankie Dettori’s 2019 triumph riding Logician, the only time the classic St.Leger wasn’t held was back in 1939, due to the outbreak of World War Two.

British Champions Day, Ascot

This world-famous racecourse really needs no introduction, as the home of numerous major flat and jump racing events throughout the year. However, the event, in particular, catching our eye is British Champions Day, which will take place on 17 October as the thrilling conclusion day of the British flat racing season.

The best trainers and jockeys are always keen to participate in the Champion Stakes, which is the headline race of the day offering a £1.3 million purse and over £700,000 to the winner. First run in 1877, the most successful horse of all time remains Tristan, who won three times in a row between 1882 and 1884, while Aga Khan III owned the most winners, with six through the 1930’s and 1940’s.

Enjoy the races

Given there’s such a packed schedule of flat races ahead, throughout the summer and autumn of 2020, there’s also plenty to keep horse racing fans entertained. Good luck if you’re backing any of the potential winners, and most of all, enjoy the broadcasts and widespread coverage of these famous events.

The views/opinions expressed in these comments are solely those of the author and do not represent those of Island Echo. House rules on commenting must be followed at all times.
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