Newcastle Racecourse

High Gosforth Park, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE3 5HP - Map & Directions
01912 362020
Newcastle Racecourse Sign
Newcastle Racecourse Sign (Antonia /

Located in Gosforth Park, Newcastle racecourse is owned and operated by Arena Racing Company. Racing first took place in the North East in the early 17th century, whilst the Town Moor hosted the first Northumberland Plate race in 1833, although this was then moved to the current location in 1882. Scottish business owner David Williamson joined Newcastle as managing director in 2002 and over the course of six years was able to boost the turnover of the company by over £4m. The Northumberland Plate alone now brings in over £30m to the regional economy.

In December 2013, Arena Racing Company announced plans to change the flat turf course into an all-weather track, to go alongside the pre-existing turf jump-racing course. Newcastle racecourse is fairly accessible to all racegoers, situated on the outskirts of Gosforth and just five miles from the city centre. Customers travelling by car are encouraged to follow the brown and white tourist signs following the A1 and A19. Those travelling by train should take the metro along the airport line to Regent Centre Metro Station, where a free bus service is in operation on all race days.

Ticket Prices

Standard prices at Newcastle racecourse enable entry to the grandstand and paddock enclosure from as little as £13, whilst access to the premier enclosure is priced at just £19 for standard meetings. Customers under the age of 18 are permitted free of charge when accompanied by a full paying adult.

The Course

Gosforth Park, Newcastle Racecourse
Gosforth Park, Newcastle Racecourse (peter maddison /

The grade 3 course at Newcastle is triangular in shape and run left-handed over a flat, galloping surface. The flat course is 1m6f in circumference, with the final 4f featuring a gradual climb, which tends to favour horses which rely on stamina. An extended chute enables flat races up to one mile in length to take place, whilst in races up to 7f low drawn horses tend to have a statistical advantage.

The steeplechase course contains 11 reasonably stiff fences, with that number increasing to 14 for two-mile races. The course often has quite a testing ground so stamina is quite often preferred to pace. The hurdles course at Newcastle has just seven flights, with three in the home straight prior to the winning post. The National Hunt track at Newcastle is quite often used as preparation for horses running at Cheltenham and Aintree.

Major Meetings at Newcastle

Renovations Taking Place at Newcastle Racecourse
Renovations Taking Place at Newcastle Racecourse (Graham Robson /

Although David Williamson introduced Ladies Day at Newcastle, which attracts over 15,000 people each year, by far the most popular race is the Northumberland Plate. Established in 1833, the thoroughbred race is run annually in late June or early July over a distance of 2m and 19 yards. It is widely known as one of the richest two mile handicaps in the world.

From 1857, the horse Underhand won it three years in a row and remains the most successful horse in the history of the race. Another popular flat race at Newcastle is the Chipchase Stakes, which is run on the same afternoon as the Northumberland Plate. Established as recently as 1994, the stakes is run over a distance of 6f.

In terms of National Hunt, the two main races at Newcastle are the Fighting Fifth Hurdle and the Eider Chase. The hurdle was first run in 1969 and is run over two miles each year in late November or early December, featuring nine hurdles. The chase is slightly longer, measuring at 4m1f and is seen as a trial for the Grand National. In 2008, the horse Comply or Die managed to win both races.

Dining and Hospitality

There are a number of hospitality packages available for customers visiting Newcastle racecourse, including both restaurants and private boxes. The basic restaurant package is priced at £78 per person, whilst the premier buffet is valued at £108 per person. The Grande Buffet Package is the most expensive of the three, costing a total of £150 per head.

In terms of private boxes, Newcastle are able to accommodate parties of between 6 and 36 people. The Gold package is available for £120 per person, whilst the Platinum package is priced slightly higher at £132 each.


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