A history of Goodwood Racecourse
Racing season is upon us and ‘Glorious Goodwood’ is getting underway this week. Goodwood racecourse, nestled on the edge of the South Downs just north of Chichester, has been established for over 200 years. Known as the sport of kings, the Duke of Richmond introduced the course to the estate for the benefit of the officers of the Sussex Militia,, or which he was Colonel, in 1802.
The course was originally known at ‘The Harroway’ and is renowned as the World’s most beautiful racecourse. We can certainly see why! With the South Downs as its backdrop, the course is set in rolling countryside. To the north of the course is the Trundle Iron Age hill fort, which is used as an informal grandstand by locals with views of the whole course.
The course is quite unusual and complex, with a straight six furlongs (660 feet to you and I) known at the ‘Stewards’ Cup Course’ which is uphill initially and then downhill towards the finish line. The course also has an additional right hand turn at the end of the straight to allow starts for various distances, the longest of which is 2miles, 5 furlongs and is known as the ‘Cup Course’. The course is only ever used for flat racing, mainly due to the slight hills and relatively sharp turns.
The Qatar Festival runs this year from 31st July to the 4th August and is one of the highlights of the flat-racing season. Elegant fashion combine with some of the greatest races in the world to create a festival week like no other. Tickets are available in advance from £25 as well as limited availability on the day.