The world-famous Ebor Festival begins at York, on Wednesday 17th August. It’s the most important meeting of the year, for this racecourse. Racing at York has been taking place for centuries. This isn’t just one of the top tracks in Northern England – York is amongst the finest racecourses in Europe.
The history of York Racecourse can be traced all of the way back to Roman times. Through the ages, the city of York has always been an important centre of commerce, education and culture. The Ebor Festival is the most important York meeting of the year. This is a four-day meeting that was established in the 1840s. Let’s take a look at the Festival’s major races…
The Juddmonte International Stakes
The G1 Juddmonte International Stakes is always run on the first day of the Ebor Festival. Horses must be aged at least three years to take part in this exciting G1 encounter. First run in 1972, Roberto was the first winner of the Juddmonte. Other well-known horses to have won the Juddmonte include Giant’s Causeway, Authorized, Sea The Stars and Frankel.
Postponed, Time Test, Hawkbill, US Army Ranger, The Gurkha and Highland Reel are all prominent in our ante-post betting market.
The Yorkshire Oaks
Day two of the Ebor Festival is Ladies Day and the Yorkshire Oaks takes place, which is a G1 fixture for fillies and mares. Many of the horses that run in this race will have also contested the Epsom Oaks. Pleascach won the Yorkshire Oaks, in 2015. Other recent notable winners include Only Royale, Islington, Alexandrova and Midday.
Minding will surely start as an odds-on favourite if she races, although this does not seem likely. Her absence would open up a window of opportunity for the likes of Seventh Heaven, Even Song, Simple Verse, Beautiful Romance and Hugo Palmer’s Architecture.
The Nunthorpe Stakes
Day three (Friday) of the Ebor Festival will see plenty of betting on the Nunthorpe Stakes. Yet another G1 contest, the Nunthorpe is a lightning-fast sprint over just five furlongs. Paul Mulrennan piloted Mecca’s Angel to victory, in 2015. Other great Nunthorpe champions include Lochsong, Nuclear Debate, Reverence and Sole Power.
Michael Dod’s inmate returns to defend her title, but faces a stiff task. Profitable, Lady Aurelia and Caravaggio all appear to have the edge over the defending champion. Acapulco, Yalta and Easton Angel are also in contention.
The Ebor Handicap
The final day of the Ebor Festival is the one that most will be looking forward to. Saturday’s Ebor is one of the biggest handicap races of the year. In 2015, the winner was Litigant (trained by Joseph Tuite). There have been many great winners of this race, including Sea Pigeon, Jupiter Island, Further Flight and All The Good.
Housesofparliament, Ivan Grozny, Antiquarium, Seamour and Kinema will be amongst the ante-post favourites, but don’t be surprised if the race is one by a runner that goes off at a huge price.
Don’t miss this year’s Ebor Festival, as 4 days of terrific action are in store!