Wincanton’s General Manager delays Christmas Lunch due to Boxing Day demands
20th December 2017 – If Christmas Day is for children, Boxing Day is for grown-ups and families, an opportunity to slip away and do something self-indulgent. For some it’s the January sales, which always seem to start in December. For others it’s a foreign holiday somewhere hot. But for country folk, nothing beats the local Boxing Day race meeting.
There will be no fewer than eight of these blissful events next Tuesday afternoon: at Wincanton, Kempton Park, Huntingdon, Market Rasen, Fontwell Park, Sedgefield, Wetherby and Wolverhampton.
For Boxing Day, racing is part of the very fabric of English life in the shires. These meetings are not just about horses. They are family occasions where people mingle and socialise with old friends in the depths of winter.
With 10,000 racegoers anticipated at Wincanton on December 26th, the General Manager (Huw Williams) will once again forgo his Christmas Day as he prepares for the Boxing Day fixture.
Huw explains: “The build-up to Boxing Day is demanding for the entire team, on the track, in hospitality and operational set-up.
“This week sees the final installation and preparation of the various enclosures and hospitality outlets as we look forward to welcoming over 10,000 racegoers and over 2000 hospitality guests.
“December 22, 23, 24 and 25 are deadline days for online ticket sales, declarations of raceday runners, printing deadline, delivery of racecards and numerous site inspections.
“With constant attention to detail required for Boxing Day, I opt to postponed Christmas Day till later in the week, when I can switch off and enjoy the festivities and then focus on our January race meetings!”
ON-COURSE ACTIVITIES IN THE BUILD-UP TO BOXING DAY:
Preparing the Enclosures
Checking signage site-wide
Prepare the track for the horses to run on fresh ground.
Prepare and set-up all hospitality areas from private boxes to the three restaurants, bars and catering outlets
Race entries taken for Boxing Day races
Installation of additional water provision, sanitary units and marquees
A team of caterers will start prepping hospitality with catering concessions arriving on site
Deadline for online tickets sales
Raceday declarations received with this information and other data to be sent to Wetherbys for publishing
Final ticket fulfilment
Boxing Day racecards are delivered on Christmas Eve
Numerous course walks, site inspections and safety checks
Come Boxing Day, Huw Williams will be on-course from 5:45am to unlock and lead a 100-man operational team, with the day concluding close to 8pm.
Tickets are still available for Boxing Day with prices starting from £18 per person in the Grandstand Enclosure and £25 for a Premier Enclosure ticket with complimentary entry for all children aged 17-years and under when accompanied by an adult. (Complimentary admission tickets are required for children.). Course Enclosure admission on the day is £12. To order tickets please call 0344 579 3014 or visit wincanton.thejockeyclub.co.uk
Gates open on Boxing Day at 10:30am with a seven-racecard off at 12:25pm.
A complimentary park & ride service will be in operation from Morrison’s car park (postcode BA9 9EB). Buses will be ready to start transporting people to the racecourse from 10:15am.