Scottsville Racecourse

Scottsville Racecourse is situated in the province of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, approximately a mile and a half from the centre of the capital city, Pietermaritzburg. The racecourse was established, as the City Sporting Club, in 1886 and, at one time, was home to the South African Fillies’ Guineas, the South African Fillies’ Sprint and the Oaks. In 2006, an additional track was constructed at Scottsville Racecourse, at a cost of R4.6 million, allowing the number of fixtures staged to be increased by two-thirds.


Course Characteristics

The round course at Scottsville is a tight, right-handed turf oval, 2,300 metres, or nearly 11½ furlongs, in circumference, with a home straight 550 metres, or nearly 2¾ furlongs, long. The straight course, on which races up to 1,200 metres, or 6 furlongs, are run, joins the round course at the top of the home straight. The straight course runs downhill for the first 400 metres, or 2 furlongs, but uphill for the last 500 metres, or 2½ furlongs, and tends to favour horses coming from off the pace. Horses drawn on the outside hold a distinct advantage on the straight course when the going is soft.


Track Facts

The most valuable race of the year at Scottsville is the Golden Horse Casino Sprint, run over 1,200 metres, or 6 furlongs, in May each year.

The Golden Horse Casino Sprint, formerly the Gilbey’s Stakes, was inaugurated in 1962. The total prize money on that occasion was R7,000 compared with R750,000 in 2013.

The family comedy movie Racing Stripes, about a young zebra who sets his heart on becoming a racehorse, was filmed, in part, at Scottsville Racecourse in 2004.

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