Doncaster is a large market town in South Yorkshire in the north of England. Doncaster has a history that can be traced in one form or another all the way back to roman times and onwards through the middle ages. King Richard I awarded a town charter in 1194. The town was granted a further charter for it’s market to trade and the market still exists today. King Charles II bestowed the title of ‘Free Borough’ to Doncaster in recognition of the towns loyalty to his father King Charles I during the English Civil War.
As well as horse racing, Doncaster is also home to Doncaster Rover FC who currently play in League One. Perhaps more significantly, Doncaster is home to Doncaster Belles one of the most successful ladies teams in the country.
Doncaster Racecourse hosts both Flat Racing on turf and National Hunt Racing on turf.
The flat racing track is a left-handed, almost flat, almost pear-shaped, galloping track of about 2 miles circuit. The run in is four and a half furlongs. There is a straight course on which all races up to seven furlongs are run. Races over one mile can be run either straight or round.
The jumps course is also left-handed, galloping, and generally flat and is also a two mile circuit.
The course drains very well and very testing conditions are less common than at other tracks.
Clerk of the course: Roderick Duncan
Course telephone number: 01302 304200
Doncaster is home to many prestigious races. The turf flat season starts and finishes here. But most importantly it is the home to the worlds oldest Classic, The St Leger. There is real history here!!
Doncaster is 170 miles from Central London, 94 miles from Birmingham, 183 miles from Bristol, 203 miles from Cardiff, 70 miles from Manchester and 235 miles from Edinburgh.
The racecourse is situated in the east of town, just off the A638. The nearest motorway junctions are J3 & J4 of M18 and J36 of A1(M)
The course post code is DN2 6BB.
Course parking is free.
The nearest railway station is Doncaster Station which is about 2.5 miles away. A local bus company run a shuttle service to and from the course, which today cost £3 for a return journey.
There are four possible enclosures at Doncaster. They are The Premier Enclosure, The County Enclosure, The Grandstand Enclosure and The Family Enclosure. The dress code for the Premier Enclosure is ‘Smart’ for ladies and gentlemen and for The County Enclosure ‘collared shirt’ for the gents and ‘smart’ again for the ladies. There is no dress code in either of the other enclosures.
There is plenty of room in the stands and the views are very good. Doncaster is a pretty flat course so it’s fairly easy to see everything as it happens if using binoculars. There is of course the big screen as there is at every course now.
Food and drink is easily accessible in all areas, there is plenty and it is of a good quality. I was quite impressed with the food hall located on the first floor of the grandstand. It had a really good range of different types of food. I personally had pie, mash and gravy in a box and it was spot on!
All the staff here were extremely courteous and everyone seems well organised!
There is a strong sense of history at Doncaster racecourse. I felt it in the same way as I felt it at Epsom. I really enjoyed my day though didn’t get too involved in the betting side of things. I went down with my Brother In Law and my Nephew and we just enjoyed a good day out.
It was a nice touch for the course to have a two minute applause before racing in memory of the Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha who was of course also a keen racing man.
The only shot I fired in anger today was on a horse call Laugh A Minute and even then it was only in the four places market on the Betfair Exchange. Just as well as fourth is exactly where he finished. Still I got paid didn’t I? It was a tricky enough race and at one point I thought he might come and win but didn’t quicken when he needed to. The winner of the race was Donjuan Triumphant and a very appropriate and popular winner, not just because he was favourite but also because he wore the colours of King Power Racing Co Ltd.
That’s it really
It’s the West Country for me next I think, Exeter on Wednesday!