Sandown Racecourse

Sandown Racecourse was established in its current location, in Esher, Surrey, on the outskirts of London, in 1875. It was, in fact, the first racecourse to be designed and constructed specifically for the purpose and the first to be enclosed. The racecourse was closed for refurbishment in 1972 and, under the auspices of Jockey Club Racecourses, which bought it in 1994, has continued to flourish. Today, Sandown hosts 30 Flat and National Hunt fixtures throughout the year.

Course Characteristics

Overall, Sandown Racecourse can be described as a right-handed, galloping, testing track. The round course is an oval, thirteen furlongs in circumference, with a four furlong home straight. The last half mile is uphill until a hundred yards before the winning post, so an abundance of stamina is a prerequisite. The straight five furlong course rises steadily throughout and tends to favour horses drawn low, especially on soft ground. On the National Hunt course, there are eleven, stiff fences – including the three so-called railway fences, which come in quick succession at the end of the back straight – or six flight of hurdles per circuit and a run-in of 220 yards.


Track Facts

The first live televised horse race came from Sandown in 1947.

The Eclipse Stakes, nowadays sponsored by Coral and often referred to as the Coral-Eclipse, was first run in 1886.

The Eclipse Stakes is the first chance of the season for three-year-olds to take on older horses at the highest level.

The most successful trainer in the history of the Bet365 Gold Cup, formerly the Whitbread Gold Cup, was the late Fulke Walwyn with seven wins between 1958 and 1984.

The Tingle Creek Chase is named after a popular steeplechaser who won his last race at Sandown in 1978.

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