Two Day October Meeting Richest Ever Seasonal Conclusion To York Races
7:24am 10th October 2013
The last chance to enjoy racing action at York in 2013 comes on Friday and Saturday (11 & 12 October). With prize money of over £315,000 on offer, it is the most valuable October finale ever staged on the Knavesmire
Friday will see the second staging of ‘Countryside Raceday’ while Saturday will be accompanied by the sound of the Corps of Drums of the Coldstream Guards.
Saturday’s quality programme begins at 1-50 p.m. The Coral Sprint Trophy takes pride of place with this famous contest offering prize money of £75,000, while precocious two-year-olds are catered for in The Coral Rockingham Stakes, a £45,000 Listed race. Both feature races are run over six furlongs.
Leading bookmaker, Coral once again support six of Saturday’s seven races, while the Corps of Drums will perform during the afternoon and bring the curtain down on the season as they mark the Coldstream Guards Association Cup, a middle-distance handicap race.
Looking to combine the delights of the rural life with the excitement of a raceday, the ‘Countryside Raceday’ on Friday will look to build on last year’s inaugural event with seven races being complemented by rural activity and products; including a sheepdog display courtesy of Carol Melling from ITV’s ‘The Dales’, laser clay-shooting and a chance to get up close falconry display. For those wishing to start their Christmas shopping early there is a Countryside Market of local produce and crafts.
Friday’s card begins at 2-00 p.m. and blends competitive handicaps with contests to develop the two-year-olds as well as a race for amateur riders. Regular race sponsors on this day include TSG and the Parsonage Country House Hotel & Cloisters Spa at Escrick. The European Breeders’ Fund continue their backing of York with support of the contest for maiden two-year-olds in conjunction with Brittain’s Beverages. They are joined by three new sponsors at this meeting, Novus Property Services, Website Designers Yorkshire and bookmaker Stan James. The latter displaying both their wider support of racing and a sense of humour in naming the richest race of the day, “The This Isn’t the Stan James Champion Hurdle Stakes”, no doubt much to the relief of the connections of the flat thoroughbreds looking to be at their best over just a mile. Completing the Friday card is this year’s renewal of The Future Cleaning Services Apprentice Stakes – a contest for up-and-coming young riders backed by the York firm who provide the cleaning at the Knavesmire.
The meeting will also see the conclusion of the season long contests to be top jockey and trainer at York. Both competitions look like going right down to the wire. In the Living North-sponsored jockey’s race, the three-time champion jockey, Ryan Moore has ridden nine winners this year on the Knavesmire, two more than North Yorkshire-based Danny Tudhope, with Neil Callan and Silvestre de Sousa both on the five-winner mark.
The race to be the Hatfields Motor Group Top Trainer at York is equally close with Malton trainer, Richard Fahey’s seven-year domination of this award facing serious competition. Fellow North Yorkshire-based trainers, David O’Meara and Kevin Ryan lead the way with ten and eight winners respectively, with both Fahey and Newmarket-based Yorkshireman William Haggas on seven winners. It took the final race of the 2012 season to decide the crown and this year could prove as tight a finish with second or even third place totals coming to the party.
Four large screens will cover both racing on the Knavesmire and the major contests from Newmarket on the Saturday. The totepool - backed Punters Panel will offer tips before racing on each day,
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