The countdown to the iconic Cheltenham Festival has began and next month, Wincanton will host its very own Champion Hurdle trial in the form of the newly sponsored – Betway Kingwell Hurdle on Saturday, 18th February.
The Kingwell Hurdle was first run in 1971 and was awarded Grade Two status back in 1991. The two-mile contest was first won in 1971 by Richard Pitman riding Bula that went on to win the Champion Hurdle for two consecutive years.
Several horses have won both races in the same year and the race has also attracted great support from Champion Jockeys with John Francome winning in 1976 on board triple consecutive winner Lanzarote. Peter Scudamore claimed victory on four occasions with champion jockey, Richard Dunwoody leading the Kingwell field with five wins (1989, 90, 94, 97 & 98).
The nation’s favourite grey, Desert Orchid, gained victory in the Kingwell Hurdle in 1984 and another global sensation was Alderbrook in 1995 ridden by Norman Williamson and trained by Kim Bailey.
The legendary Sir Anthony McCoy has three Kingwell titles to his name – Inglis Drever in 2005, Straw Bear from 2007 and the awesome Binocular in 2012.
The 2016 Kingwell Hurdle was won by the gallant Rayvin Black who gained victory in scintillating fashion for the Grand National winning trainer Oliver Sherwood, owners Ray While and Vinny Walsh, ridden by jockey Tom Garner.
Tickets for the Betway Kingwell Hurdle Raceday start from £16 per person for advance grandstand entry with a £2 increase on the day. Premier enclosure prices are £21 advance / £23 on the day. Book now on 0344 579 3014 or visit wincanton.thejockeyclub.co.uk
Racing on Wednesday, 1st March is sponsored by Lycetts Insurance Brokers with the course hosting a stable tour ahead of racing.
Annual members and racing fans will have the chance to visit Wilsford Stables in Salisbury, the home of trainer Seamus Mullins and his stock. Coach transfer is provided by Wincanton with bookings to be made on 01963 435840.
On Thursday, 9th March Wincanton Racecourse once again stages its FREE ADMISSIONS RACEDAY to all those that pre-registered.
Advance registration is compulsory with four tickets per household – register now on wincanton.thejockeyclub.co.uk or call 0344 579 3014.
Registration closes for FREE ADMISSION at midnight on Sunday, 5th March with standard ticket charges applicable for those that fail to register in advance.
Huw Williams, Wincanton Racecourse’s General Manager, says: “I’m delighted that once again with the support of long-term sponsors Bathwick Tyres that we are able to provide an unlimited audience the chance to enjoy jump racing for free.”
Countryside Day returns to Wincanton on Sunday, 26th March. This popular themed raceday celebrates all things rural with vintage tractors being this year’s main focus, alongside a dry stone wall demonstration, a falconry show and a parade of retired racehorses.
Huw Williams, General Manager of Wincanton Racecourse, said: “We will stage five meetings over the next two months (February and March) and are offering a wide range of on-course activities and opportunities for our racegoers.
“Three of those meetings (February 2nd, March 1st and March 9th) are offering discounted entry following the introduction of our mid-week one enclosure pricing and a free raceday for registered racegoers on March 9th.”
About Wincanton Racecourse:
Wincanton Racecourse is situated in the heart of Somerset – home to rural jump racing. Wincanton stages 18 meetings each season. Please find more details at wincanton.thejockeyclub.co.uk and through Twitter (@WincantonRaces) and Facebook facebook.com/WincantonRaces
Wincanton Racecourse is part of The Jockey Club, which has been at the heart of British racing for more than 260 years. Today the largest commercial group in the sport, The Jockey Club runs the largest racecourse group in the UK by turnover (2015: £174.2m), attendances (2015: 1.95m), total prize money (2015: £43.9m), contribution to prize money (2015: £19.9m) and quality racing (Group and Graded races); more than 3,000 acres of world-class training grounds in Newmarket, Lambourn and Epsom Downs; The National Stud breeding enterprise and education provider; and the charity for racing's people in need, Racing Welfare. Governed by Royal Charter, every penny The Jockey Club makes it puts back into British racing. More information is available at www.thejockeyclub.co.uk.
For further information please contact:
Hannah Walker, Wincanton Racecourse on 07971 598287 or firstname.lastname@example.org