Place your bets on a group day out that will prove an odds-on winner as GTW round up the UK’s top racing venues.
STRATFORD-ON-AVON RACECOURSE, WARWICKSHIRE
Stratford is one of the country’s leading small summer jumps racecourses, attracting top trainers and jockeys to its 18 racing fixtures throughout the year. Its sublime summer race days attract family groups who can picnic in the centre of the course, making use of the free admission for under 18s, as well as the free children’s entertainment.
The racetrack is also popular with tour groups keen to make it a weekend trip by exploring the historic Warwickshire countryside and nearby Stratford-on-Avon town centre. If you’d prefer to be waited on rather than provide a picnic, hospitality packages start from £115 per person (plus VAT). All packages include a complimentary free bar with tea, coffee and biscuits available throughout. Full afternoon tea is also available for an extra £10 per person. Groups who’d like to camp overnight can take advantage of the racecourse campsite – call 01789 201063, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.stratfordtouringpark.com for details.
For more on the racecourse and any upcoming fixtures call 01789 267949, email email@example.com or visit www.stratfordracecourse.net.
Huntingdon Racecourse, Cambridgeshire – Family Fun, Racing Style
Sunday, March 1, sees Huntingdon Racecourse throw open its doors for its annual community family fun day. Ideal for groups, discounted tickets cost from £11.25 per person for groups of 20 or more – a saving of 25%. There’s a full afternoon’s racing and lots of catering options available. Visit huntingdon.thejockeyclub.co.uk for more details.
NEWMARKET RACECOURSE, SUFFOLK
Host to two classic races – the 1,000 Guineas and 2,000 Guineas – Newmarket Racecourse has nearly 40 race days planned for 2015, with hefty savings for groups of 10 or more. Visit newmarket.thejockeyclub.co.uk for details of all the race days.
Choose your date and book in advance to take advantage of a 20% discount off the admission price for groups of 10-19 people, 25% off the admission price for groups of 20 or more and further special discounts for groups of 50 plus. There’s also free coach parking and free Grandstand and Paddock entry (as well as a complimentary soft drink) for coach drivers transporting 16 or more passengers. In addition, group travel organisers will earn three Rewards4Racing points for every £1 spent on advance ticket purchases. These points can then be used to get a free upgrade the next time you go racing. To book call 01638 675500 (press option 4).
Sandown Park Racecourse, Surrey – Racing and More
Groups of 10 or more people get 20% off tickets to see the racing at Sandown, with fixtures throughout the year. The course plays host to a number of non-racing events, including an antiques and vintage fair (March 24), a toy collectors’ fair (May 30) and the Esher Hall Antiques and Fine Art Fair (from October 9-10). Find out more at sandown.thejockeyclub.co.uk
FAKENHAM RACECOURSE, NORFOLK
With race events hosted throughout the year, Fakenham Racecourse is the ideal venue for a coach trip, whether it’s for an afternoon’s racing or lunch stop en route to the north Norfolk coast or one of the nearby stately homes. The Prince of Wales stand serves a range of food, as well as afternoon tea fare and can comfortably accommodate large groups – up to two 52-seater coaches at the same time. Catering can be tailored to your group’s needs and the racecourse is a short 10-minute walk from Fakenham town centre, which is home to a weekly Thursday market. Coach parties of 20 or more get a 15% discount on entry to Fakenham’s National Hunt race meetings, with free entry for coach drivers. For more on ticket prices, upcoming race meetings and lunchtime catering options visit www.fakenhamracecourse.co.uk
SOUTHALL RACECOURSE, NOTTINGHAMSHIRE
With its all-weather and turf tracks, there are races at Southall year-round and the course has proven a well-loved fixture for race-goers since the late 1800s.
In 2015, Southall will play host to nearly 70 events, including its Family Fun Day in July and a host of summer music evenings. Group deals include a day or night at the races, with tickets priced at £16 per person for groups of six or more, including Grandstand entrance, a race card, three drinks vouchers (worth £2.50 each), a discounted Ladbrokes betting voucher and a half price return voucher. The Punters Package costs £21 per person and includes the above, plus a meal voucher. To book visit www.southwell-racecourse.co.uk or call 01636 814481. Corporate hospitality packages are also available, complete with a Premier Enclosure ticket, racecard and meal.
Ayr Racecourse – See The Scottish Grand National
With fixtures throughout the spring months, including the Coral Scottish Grand National in April – Ayr Racecourse plays host to both jump and flat races, with ticket discounts available for groups. Book at least seven days in advance for a £4 discount on club badges and £2 off Grandstand tickets for groups of 20 or more. See www.ayr-racecourse.co.uk for full details and to download the 2015 hospitality brochure, with details of all the catering options available.
ASCOT RACECOURSE, BERKSHIRE
Best known for its Royal Ascot meeting in June, Ascot Racecourse offers all-year-round racing that can be both glitzy and glamorous. Discounts are available for groups of 10 or more, with discounts for larger groups of 49 plus. All of Ascot’s group packages include the cost of admission.
The racecourse’s party package offers savings of up to 20% including a premier admission ticket, £2 tote bet, racecard and three drink vouchers per person for beer or wine. Prices start from £27 per person, with various hospitality packages also available. Visit www.ascot.co.uk for more information on all the packages available, call the groups team on 01344 878536 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
KEMPTON PARK RACECOURSE, MIDDLESEX
There’s a 25% discount available at Kempton Park Racecourse for all pre-booked tickets – excluding the William Hill Winter Festival and music nights – plus take a party of 20 or more and you’ll get a complimentary table for two in the Panoramic Bar and Restaurant. Due to its proximity to London, the racecourse is popular with hen and stag parties planning to travel into the city after racing or you can simply spend a day, with jump and flat meetings held throughout the year. To book call 0844 579 3008 or for more information visit kempton.thejockeyclub.co.uk
Home to the famous St Leger event that runs from September 9-12, 2015, Doncaster Racecourse has fixtures throughout the year, including the Betbright February Festival from February 27-28. Book group tickets online to save £2 on County and Grandstand Enclosure tickets or £1 off Family Enclosure tickets. Children aged 17 and under are free on all race days when accompanied by an adult and there’s free coach and minibus parking. Further discounts are available for groups of 10 or more and any carers assisting one or more disabled visitors get free entry if they’re carrying an official Personal Carer ID card. Groups can choose from The Mallard Restaurant, which has uninterrupted views of the racecourse and waiter service during your meal (tickets cost from £75) or the glass-fronted Premier Suite. The Premier Suite has a private bar.
The County Enclosure offers a choice of bars and places to eat and allows viewing access to the saddling boxes, parade ring and winners’ enclosure. The Grandstand Enclosure has a choice of bars and places to eat and a more relaxed dress code – for families there’s the Frenchgate Family Enclosure where tickets cost from just £7 (depending on the event). For full ticket details see www.doncaster-racecourse.co.uk, call 01302 304200 or email email@example.com
AINTREE RACECOURSE, MERSEYSIDE – A GRAND DAY OUT
Best known for its legendary Grand National, Aintree Racecourse is a giant among jump courses. The Grand National will be held on April 11, 2015 with tickets starting at £44 for the Tattersalls Enclosure and discounts on offer for groups of 50 or more. Combined tickets include entrance to the Grand National, as well as admission to The Beatles Story in Liverpool. Find out more at aintree.thejockeyclub.co.uk or call 0844 579 3001.