Redcar Racecourse

The Racecourse, Redcar, Cleveland, TS10 2BY - Map & Directions
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Redcar Racecourse Entrance
Redcar Racecourse Entrance (Mick Garratt /

Situated in North Yorkshire and often described as the county’s ‘seaside track’, the current racecourse at Redcar was first opened in the 1870s. Prior to moving to the present track, races in the Redcar area were held on the sands at Coatham. In 1872, the Jockey Club issued a statement stating prize money for any race should be a minimum of £50, so in order to raise funds to pay these they needed an income. To be able to collect an entry fee from spectators, there needed to be a permanent and enclosed racecourse, so a group of local businessmen teamed up and bought the lease on the land of the current site. Redcar racecourse offers outstanding and modern facilities, due to dramatic upgrades and refurbishments over the last few years whilst still staying true to its history.

Redcar racecourse is very accessible to all racegoers, whether travelling by car or by train. Redcar has links via the A1, A66, A19 and A174 Parkway, with customers encouraged to follow the yellow AA directional signs from the outside of Redcar all the way to the trackside car park. For those travelling by train, Recar Central station is less than a ten minute walk from the track (taxis also available), with regular services including the East Coast main line form Darlington.

Ticket Prices

There are two levels of ticket price at Redcar, regular and feature, with feature prices applied to the more prestigious and well attended events. Regular prices see entry to the grandstand available for just £12, whilst access to the course enclosure is priced at the bargain sum of £4. Feature race days incorporate a 25% increase in ticket prices, with grandstand and course prices raised to £15 and £5 respectively.

The Course

Redcar Flat Racecourse Map

The course at Redcar is used exclusively for flat races, with renewals run left-handed over a 1m6f, oval-shaped track. It is a course known for its long straights, with the home stretch measuring 5f in length. The positioning of the banking helps to counteract some of the sharpness of the two bends but the bottom turn remains rather tricky to navigate for both horse and jockey.

A 3f chute joins on to the home straight in order to produce a one mile flat course for shorter races. Much like the rest of the course, it’s perfectly flat with no undulations in sight, although a few ridges have begun to form here and there. It’s also a course that tends to drain very well and combined with a largely summer schedule, the ground here is regularly on the fast side.

Bias Emerges on Soft Ground

Redcar doesn’t have the hallmarks of a course with a strong draw bias and when going is good or better, there’s absolutely none of it to be found. Typically conditions are on the firmer side but when they aren’t, evidence of a strong draw bias emerges. On ground good to soft or worse, horses drawn low post a superior record than those on their outside over every distance on the straight course.

A look into 170 races featuring 10+ runners between April 2010 and June 2019 shows us that low draws won just over twice as many races as those high drawn. Had you backed every high drawn runner with a £1 bet this time you’d have been down a massive £497. It’s little wonder then that those with a big number stall post an awful impact value of just 0.58.

Patience Pays Off in Longer Events

When factoring in the low standard of racing, standard times at Redcar are definitely on the fast side. For five furlongs the standard is 57s while for six furlongs it’s 1m 9s. Playing a big part in this is the flatness of the course and the often quick ground. What it means in terms of hold-up horses is that usually the pace is too quick to allow them to come from behind. A look at 307 such horses in 5f handicaps shows they won on just 12 occasions, making Redcar one of the worst venues in the country for this tactic.

While pace analysis shows a real advantage to a prominent ride between five and seven furlongs, any further than this, jockey can afford to hang back and patiently wait for their chance. In many races on the main circuit (1m 2f+), the lead will change numerous times down the home straight, with some horses often needing to catch their breath.

There’s a long way to the line after the turn so jockeys need not dash to the front immediately, instead being able to pick their moment before striking. In 1m 4f events, those that choose to lead early on fare much worse than jockeys who choose to sit deeper in the pack.

Major Meetings at Redcar

Aerial View of Redcar Racecourse
Aerial View of Redcar Racecourse (Chris /

Arguably the most prestigious race that takes place annually at Redcar is the Zetland Gold Cup, which is usually run at the end of May or beginning of June over a distance of 1m2f. There are 15 days of flat racing each year, which also includes important races such as the Guisborough Stakes and the Two-Year-Old Trophy, the latter of which provides £200,000 in prize money and is officially known as one of the richest two-year-old races staged on a Northern course.

Dining and Hospitality

Redcar Course
Redcar Course (Ian S /

In terms of hospitality availability in the executive areas at Redcar racecourse, there are simply four price options to choose from, each one differing and improving as they become more expensive. The cheapest is the bronze package, which starts at £50 + VAT per person, whilst the silver package is available for £60 + VAT per person.

The packages increase by £10 each time, meaning the gold and platinum packages are valued at £70 and £80 + VAT respectively and all offer good value for money for those wanting a little extra glamour on their race day.


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