Some have called it “unpretentious”, this lovely little racecourse tucked into the East Riding of Yorkshire, in a market town which bears its same name. Established in 1767 when the first Grand Stand was built, the racecourse has all the makings to be, in fact, pretentious, with a 300 hundred year long history and a solid reputation to boot.
However, it decides not to, keeping both feet firmly on the ground but with head held high. Through modernisation of the stands, race track and facilities, the Beverley Racecourse aims for the stars – and with good reason.
But what makes this racecourse memorable? We’ll be taking a look at some of the events which happened this year, which have helped to put Beverley firmly and definitely on the British racing map.
The Beverley Bullet Keeps Wooing Crowds
With rains on Friday, hopes were not very high for trainer David Griffiths and his horse Take Cover. The 10-year-old however had other plans in mind as she shot off into an early lead and was the first to cross the finish line, being the joint-eldest to ever win The Beverley Bullet. “I don’t think I’ve ridden anything as quick”, is what jockey Tom Queally had to say about Take Cover, who already was a 3-1 favourite with the betting audience. The filly earned connections £22,500 in her five-furlong dash as her jockey’s colours in red and royal blue epaulets were cheered on by many in the stands.
But the Beverley Bullet was also the race that keeps on giving. While Take Cover’s performance was far from the greatest in each and every race (with a devastating last place at Nunthorpe Stakes at York earlier on this year), she went on to win a Group Three race on September 23rd. Together with ongoing works on the facilities at the Beverley Racecourse itself, CEO Sally Iggulden used this celebratory event as leverage in her campaign to promote the Beverley Bullet as a Group Three race.
The Beverley Bullet is one of the biggest race days at Beverley, with huge crowds and a lovely atmosphere, enjoyed by spectators and jockeys alike. 2017 was truly the year of the Bullet and all the signs point to it getting better and better with time.
The Beverley Bullet has this year seen a 6% increase in attendance, figures which defy other national dropping figures in horse racing attendance. While this speaks volumes about the quality of the races, it is also testimony that people visit the track more willingly because they genuinely enjoy it. Season finale tickets were sold out in less than an hour and people flock in droves on special race days. There is much going on before, during and after the races.
Attendees who fancy adding more excitement to the race, head over to the betting counters. While it is important that you know your way around horse race analysis, there’s plenty of help to be found at the race course. Why not enjoy a refreshing glass of bubbly champagne on the lawns or get your own picnic and sit at the race enclosures? We’ve had plenty of sunshine this year on race days and people made the most of it.
New Partnerships, New Events
The Beverley Racecourse has this year established new partnerships which have seen all parties involved benefit tremendously. Amongst these partnerships, are Hull FC, Winteringham Fields and the York Cancer Research. However, one of the most successful, was the partnership with Flemingate Centre for Beverley Ladies’ Day. Many took the opportunity to dress up to the nines for the occasion, where a catwalk was also installed and a Most Stylish award was given to the best dressed – a true feat for the judges!
The racing track became a colourful mix of dresses, hats and purses, as cameras flashed and poses were struck. More than 11,000 made their way to the Beverley Racecourse for a day of chic socialising and cocktail sipping as the sun shone down.
The sponsors behind the event worked in complete harmony together, interweaving perfectly to create a beautiful social tapestry. From gin bars, to music to free mineral water and sun cream to keep the ladies looking great without letting the heat take its toll, the day was an absolute success. In Iggulden’s own words, “Beverley was buzzing from morning to night.”
The Beverley Racecourse has come a long way since 1767. The venue has now become more accessible and any Tom, Dick and Harry can make a full day out of it, enjoying the gorgeous backdrop of the Yorkshire country, while admiring the strong horses – the main stars of the show. What does the future hold in store? If the present is of any indication, we can envisage great things for these historical grounds. With an ambitious and hardworking support team and a board with a vision, The Beverley Racecourse is enjoying new heights and a reputation to be proud of.