Newmarket - July Course
Flat – up to 2 mile races, mostly around 1 mile. Includes the famous dip in the last furlong.
Approx no. of meetings
39 (across both courses)
Rail from London (1 Hour 19 minutes, changing at Cambridge)
Bus from Cambridge (40 minutes)
Railway station to Racecourse (1.5 miles, shuttle bus operates)
Plentiful Taxis.(BumbleBee livery)
Facilities: 3 stands, with mixed access based on ticket category. Pay for the premier ticket and you gain from the seated view in the millennium bar on the second floor of the millennium stand. The second floor is very easy to access with escalators in case the pace of racing means you can’t face any more stairs. On the ground, away from the stands are multiple forms of street food, burgers, pies etc and sufficient bars and bookies to be serviced quickly.
Staying over: Our second stay at the Bedford Lodge Hotel and Spar and even better than the first. The distance is great as you are just out of town, a good gym, wonderful breakfast and room to park. Also great views of the horses being exercised in the mornings.
Premier (£25), Paddock and Grandstand (£16). Discount online in advance.
(2) Return before challenge complete
Octboer 28th - UK Tracks Visited (19), Ireland Tracks Visited (3)
For the second day back to Newmarket, this time to the famous and one might say infamous Rowley Mile, expectations were high and I am glad to say we were not disappointed. We walked from our hotel just to the east of the town, through Newmarket and out to the West towards the course. Luckily this was not as far as the July course, but beware. In boots (Madam Hoof, not I) this still took nearly three quarters of an hour. On a fabulous, still warm Autumnal day, but there was a chill breeze which was to grow later.
As you approach the grandstand, there is a wow factor (keep right walking down the road, we fear the taxis don’t know what 20 miles an hour is). The Millennium stand (completed, yes you guessed it, in the year 2000), is a stark edifice against the wide-open sky. Once you get up close it is easy more impressive with the “aforementioned” escalators running up the back side of the building.
In terms of the paddock and pre-paddock location, they are behind the grandstand in the A configuration. But the clever people who designed this structure, which bears comparison to Newbury, have been wise enough to allow balcony on the back of both the bar and the premium Millennium bar, to allow the horses to be reviewed without too much recourse from the drinking environs. The whole estate is laid out with space and movement in mind and it succeeds in this approach.
The Millennium bar was where Madam and I shared a cheeky bottle of bubbles. We enjoyed ourselves immensely interacting with the group of guys at the next table when we found ourselves on the same horse. A note for all the newbies out there who want to gamble. At the track, you have bookies, Tote, trackside and internet. The internet is the quickest; the Tote the slowest. When we had to wait for the result of a photo finishing, Madam Hoof was busily paying for champagne while the other guys were still waiting for the Tote to calculate the values to be paid out.
The track, the staff and the people of Newmarket are available. This is a premier venue for horse racing. As ever we found over officious G4S security; you need to seriously consider whether they are protecting your brand or harming it, as I have not had many good experiences, when pedantry did not escalate rather than defuse a situation. We will return to Newmarket as and when time permits, but this is the home of racing for more than just historical reasons.