The Southwell Racecourse is one of the few all-weather racecourses across the UK. This racecourse stands out in distinct ways. Southwell racecourse sits 3 kilometres south of the renowned minster town of Southwell in Nottinghamshire.
What makes it different from other racecourses is that it has a fibresand surface- the components that make the fibresand include fabric fibres and sand. This makes it deep for horses that are used to racing on other surfaces. For this reason, the stamina of these horses racing on this surface is tremendously tested.
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Racing at the Southwell began in the early 1840s. At first, only pony races took place at Southwell and Newark. Unfortunately, Newark was shut in 1880. However, Southwell Racecourse soldiered on and became successful. In the 1880s, this racecourse happened to be the only one in this area.
Stakeholders decided to move it to Kirklington Road. The track ran over on a public road and this raised some safety concerns. In 1897, several accidents occurred, killing a jockey and a few horses. The authorities in charge stepped in and revoked the track’s license.
The stakeholders would then build the present Southwell Racecourse the following year. Currently, this racecourse has a grandstand with a 1,200 capacity. Flooding and the world war may have stopped a few racing events from taking place, but the racecourse has flourished over the years.
The Southwell Racecourse doors opened 7 months after the previous race venue was shut down. As part of a face-lift, the management hired contractors to build the grandstand in 1965. The new grandstand has a capacity of over 1200 spectators.
The Southwell Racecourse garnered massive attention in 1989 when it became the first ever-artificial racing track to hold the well-respected National Hunt race. These kinds of races could not go on for long on this track due to safety reasons.
Regardless of the track qualifying as an all-weather course, the 2012 floods affected it bringing all the racing activity to a standstill. The management decided to move the remaining races to Lingfield and Wolverhampton.
The Southwell racecourse is a versatile track with both a jump and an all-weather track. It presents a variety of challenges to horses and jockeys. As for the spectators, you can expect exciting racing activities. Let us look at what the racetracks at Southwell offer;
AW Flat course
The AW course is not only flat but also left-handed. This track is predominantly for flat racing. The left-handed run is about 1m 2f with a 5ft straight run that is ideal for sprinting. Due to the fibres, you can equate this track to the ordinary American dirt track.
The jump course is on the other side of the racecourse. This is where the jump races take place. Horses have to skip over seven fences to finish the race.
There are five flights for hurdle races. These hurdles are lenient on the horses that don’t like to jump a lot. However, the underfoot could be unforgiving sometimes.
Races and events
Various races take place at the Southwell Racecourse annually. You may not expect a myriad of top tier events but there is plenty of entertainment for racegoers. Punters also get great opportunities to bet on various fixtures. High profile charity events may also be held in this park occasionally. Simply, there is always something to look forward to on the Southwell Racecourse.
Where to bet on Southwell races
Southwell racecourse betting shops
At the Southwell racecourse, near the grandstand, you will find a host of betting shops. All you need to do is choose the shop you like, walk in and buy a horse race betting ticket. Usually, there are plenty of betting options and the agents are conversant with all the fixtures of the day. As long as you know the horse you are backing and the race time, you can easily place a bet.
Online betting sites
Over 50 horseracing fixtures take place on the Southwell Racecourse annually. These racing markets are featured by various online betting sites. This allows punters to bet on their favourite horses online. To get the best online betting opportunity, you have to sign up with a reputable bookie. As you do so, ensure that your select bookmakers that provide fixtures from the Southwell racecourse. After that, you can proceed to sign up, deposit your funds and start placing bets.
How to get to the Southwell racecourse
Rolleston is the nearest rail station to the Southwell racecourse. The best part is that it is adjacent to the park. Therefore, you can work from the train to the racecourse.
On race day, other railway lines serve this station. Most racegoers prefer to come to this venue through the Newark station that is served by many other railway lines. Unfortunately, the Newark railway station is about ten miles away.
Racegoers may access the racecourse through the road. Sometimes, the local authorities create diversions and close off some roads on race days, which make getting to the racecourse a lot more hectic. Nonetheless, the postcode NG25 OTS should get you there. Besides that, you can always check all the road signage to stay on course.
The Southwell racecourse undoubtedly offers a different racing experience than most racecourses in the UK. It is the only racecourse with a firebrand surface. And horses will have a hard time competing on these tracks. This is what makes the racing experience unforgettable for most people.
While most people go to the Southwell track for entertainment, others go to enjoy the races and place bets. Watching a race that you have placed a bet on tends to be more thrilling. However, you need to understand that the Southwell racecourse presents a different kind of challenge for most horses. As such, your favourite horse might struggle on this course. And for this reason, you need to do some research before backing any horse. If you follow the races that take place at this venue closely, you can increase your chances of winning.