The Goodwood Estate is set at the foot of the beautiful Sussex Downs close to Chichester. It is the home to the current Earl and Countess of March. Goodwood House contains a number of works of art by such as Stubbs and Van Dyke. The Estate hosts the sports of Horse Racing, Motor Racing, Flying, Shooting and Golf. It is a truly beautiful place.
About five miles away is the city of Chichester which for me has one of the most beautiful cathedrals in the country. At around 900 years old, It’s well looked after and the stained-glass windows inside are just stunning. It is free to visit.
Goodwood Festival theatre is renowned as one of the country’s flagship theatres. The festival season runs from April to November and hosts exceptionally high quality productions.
Within and hour or so driving time you can also find beaches at Shoreham, Worthing and of course Brighton, among others. There are also three other racecourses in West and East Sussex at Fontwell, Plumpton and at Brighton (visiting tomorrow).
If you are short of time, and fancy somewhere a little quainter to visit then try an hour or two in Arundel. The Castle is an impressive backdrop to the town which contains a couple of beautiful churches and some lovely shops and tearooms.
For accommodation you probably need to go to Chichester and there are lots of bars and restaurants around there too. I used Chichester Harbour Hotel and Spa and really enjoyed it so I will give them a plug here
Goodwood is a grade 1 track. It is a looped, right-handed, sharp, undulating course. There is also a 6f straight course. It seems in favour of those runners which can front run or lie handy. Horses with a hold up style of racing frequently meet trouble when attempting to challenge and most particularly when running the rail. There is some bias towards those drawn low in sprints, especially in large fields.
Goodwood host only Flat Racing and holds a number of prestigious races, most particularly at The Goodwood Festival meeting in late July / early August.
The course is 6 miles north of Chichester on The Goodwood Estate. Car parking is available free if you don’t mind a little walk. Car parking a bit closer to the course cost £5.
Postcode for Sat Nav is PO18 0PX
I understand that there is a bus service running from Chichester Station to bring racegoers to the course. I’m not clear if this is free or charged ………so if anyone knows?
There are three enclosures.
The Richmond Enclosure is for annual and day members and enforces a smart dress code. I’ve not visited this enclosure at any point, but I am aware that there are a variety of eateries to accommodate all tastes. This enclosure overlooks the winning post and has the best view of the big screen.
The Gordon Enclosure is a bit cheaper and has a more relaxed dress code. There are a number of eating and drinking possibilities, particularly in the Sussex Stand. The view from the top of The Sussex Stand is excellent and includes covered seating and a tote window. You are allowed to bring your drinks up here.
The Lennox Enclosure is a bit further down the course and has a very relaxed dress code. There is plenty of food and drink available and also a picnic area and childrens playground for families wanting to use it.
I found food here to be expensive though possibly in keeping with the South of England. In fairness it was of a very good quality. I had a burger and fries in The Sussex Stand and there was more than I could eat.
This is a big racecourse and caters well for large numbers of people. It wasn’t particularly crowded today (thankfully) but there was plenty for people to do. There are also some very beautiful views to enjoy.
I thought £17 into The Gordon Enclosure was quite reasonable and it was comfortable in there all day. For this I’m grateful as I don’t handle crowds very well. Added to this, it was a beautiful day again and everyone seemed in pretty good spirits. There was certainly no sign of the disgusting scenes here in early May. There was plenty of security on show and the police used sniffer dogs at the entrances.
There was plenty of atmosphere here. There was a jazz band playing most of the afternoon at the back of The Sussex Stand near the parade ring. There was also a racehorse on show for a while for those who wanted to visit. I could see that there was some kind of funfair further down in the Lennox Enclosure.
The beautiful Sussex Downs form the backdrop to this course and it has always been among my favourite courses to visit for this reason.
I had a bet in five of the seven races and collected from four with three winners and a placed horse. Another good day. Hotel in Chichester tonight and off to Brighton for tomorrows racing.