Horse Racing

Horse Racing

GRAND NATIONAL: ante-post shortlist of seven for Aintree’s great race

With the Cheltenham Festival just around the corner, it seems incongruous to start talking about the Grand National.

Horse Racing
Altior (right) on his way to victory, and a classy comeback, in the Betfair Exchange Game Spirit Chase at Newbury on Saturday.

COUNTDOWN TO CHELTENHAM: Altior and Native River back with a bang

The weather didn’t play ball, but since when has it? Behind the veneer of sheeting rain and icy winds, Newbury’s pre-Cheltenham Festival meeting at the weekend very much fitted the ‘Super Saturday’ template that was created for it.

Horse Racing
Total Recall, who was one of seven winners for champion trainer Willie Mullins at the new Dublin Racing Festival at Leopardstown.

Ireland showcases the cream of Jumps racing -- ahead of more dominance at Cheltenham Festival

The decision to switch TV coverage of Irish racing from At The Races to Racing UK from next January has caused consternation and triggered quite a kerfuffle.

Horse Racing
Racing remains the second-best attended sport in the UK, behind only football.

Ditch the myths -- it’s cool and hip to go racing, especially on the Flat

A couple of myths that tend to sit lazily, and largely unchallenged, on racing’s debating table, have been exploded by the latest research released by the Racecourse Association (RCA).

Horse Racing
An exclusive collection of 25 horses to have caught the eye this Jumps season and likely to go on to big-race success. (PHOTO BY: Jonathan Gawthorpe)

COUNTDOWN TO CHELTENHAM: horses to follow from the Jumps season so far

Inexorably, inevitably, the Cheltenham Festival is swinging into view. The rest of the Jumps season, which now resembles one, long dress-rehearsal, one, long schooling session, has hit the home straight and the winning post of mid-March is on the horizon.

Horse Racing
The favourite, Poetic Rhythm (right), pounces late on Mulcahy's Hill, to win the Grade One Betfred Challow Novices' Hurdle at Newbury on Saturday.

CHRISTMAS RACING REVIEW: from Faugheen and Might Bite to Sizing John and Buveur D’Air

Like unwanted presents strewn at the bottom of the Christmas tree, a sackful of shocks and surprises rocked the racing programme over the festive holiday.

Horse Racing
Blaklion, impressive winner of the Randox Health Becher Chase over the Grand National fences at Aintree on Saturday.

Gold Cup hero back with bang in weekend that was Sceaux (or Sceau) good

You had to know your Sceaux from your Sceau when analysing and assessing a weekend of racing action that warmed the cockles of even the coldest of hearts amid the ice and snow.

Horse Racing
Total Recall, trained by Willie Mullins and ridden by Paul Townend, won the first edition of the �250,000 Ladbrokes Trophy at Newbury on Saturday.

All the stars aligned as Newbury serves up best meeting of Jumps season so far

It’s not often all the stars are aligned and you get all your ducks in a row at a race meeting. But that was definitely the case last weekend at Newbury, who dished up the best, and most enjoyable, fare of the Jumps season so far.

Horse Racing
Racing legend John Francome, who was champion jockey seven times.

Legend John Francome looks back as Newbury’s big race begins new era

You might know it as the Hennessy Gold Cup. But you have to get used to calling it the Ladbrokes Trophy from now on.

Horse Racing
Elgin (left) powers past long-time leader Misterton at the final flight to win the Greatwood Handicap Hurdle at Cheltenham, the feature race on Sunday. (PHOTO BY: Julian Herbert/PA Wire/PA Images)

Cheltenham’s November meeting was the most underwhelming I can remember

Cheltenham’s November meeting, better known under its previous guise as The Open or even the Paddy Power, is so popular that its reputation is largely untouchable.

Horse Racing
Jockey Danny Tudhope after he was crowned Cock O' The North at Doncaster on Saturday.

Buoyant Tudhope crowned Cock O’ The North jockey for the first time

There are those who reckon Doncaster’s November Handicap meeting, which wrapped up a magnificent 2017 Flat season on Saturday, has lost its pizzazz.

Horse Racing
Saxon Warrior wins the Racing Post Trophy at Doncaster to give trainer Aidan O'Brien the new world record for Group One wins in a calendar year.

HORSES TO FOLLOW: 20 promising 2yos to remember for the Flat next spring

With just one weekend of the Flat season to go, courtesy of a terrific card at Doncaster, the mindsets of most punters are now switched on to the Jumps game. And it’s a time of year when many of us draw up horses to follow through the winter and on to the big festivals at Cheltenham, Aintree and Punchestown next spring.

Horse Racing
Champion jockey Richard Johnson (left) with one of his main challengers for this year's title trophy, Sam Twiston-Davies. (PHOTO BY: Fiona Crawford)

Richard Johnson in the box-seat for his third jump jockeys’ championship

Once the Breeders’ Cup is out of the way, the focus of the racing community can switch wholeheartedly to the Jumps season, which stepped up a gear with the first meeting at Cheltenham last weekend.

Horse Racing
Cracksman and jockey Frankie Dettori, showing off his trademark flying dismount, who were the stars of the show on Qipco British Champions Day at Ascot. (PHOTO BY: Simon Hulme, Yorkshire Post Newspapers)

Frankel legacy lives on thanks to Cracksman, star of Ascot’s Champions Day

Journeying down to Ascot on Saturday, I was staggered to read in one of the previews that the Qipco British Champions Day concept had a “difficult birth” back in 2011.

Horse Racing
One of the star attractions of Qipco Champions Day, Queen Elizabeth II Stakes favourite Ribchester, with his trainer Richard Fahey, at an open day at his yard last month. (PHOTO BY: Tony Johnson).

Race-by-race guide and tips for Qipco Champions Day at Ascot

Long gone are the days when you waved goodbye to the Flat season on the tail of the winner of the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe on the first Sunday in October.

Horse Racing
Newmarket's Rowley Mile course, which is staging some tremendous end-of-season action on the Flat, including this weekend with the Dubai Future Champions Festival. (PHOTO BY: horseracingphoto.co.uk)

Newmarket, Ascot and Doncaster set to deliver fitting finale to Flat season

Enable, Harry Angel, Winter, a vintage Royal Ascot, Big Orange, Battaash, Ribchester, Aidan O’Brien’s Group One record bid, Ulysses, Highland Reel, a cracking St Leger and a thrilling Derby.

Horse Racing
He's the man! Frankie Dettori who rode a record-breaking fifth Arc victory on board Enable at Chantilly on Sunday.

Ooh-la-la! Enable spearheads an Arc Day to remember in France

France has a long-established reputation for showcasing the very best of racing on Arc Day -- and Sunday’s captivating renewal was no exception.

Horse Racing
Capri, ridden by Ryan Moore, holds on to win the William Hill St Leger at Doncaster.

Doncaster’s crown jewel shines brightly, but the diamonds need a polish

For as long as I can remember, Doncaster’s St Leger meeting every September has been a highlight of the racing calendar.

Horse Racing
The rapidly-improving Defoe, one of the leading fancies, bidding to give jockey Andrea Atzeni his third St Leger triumph in the last four years.

It’s a St Leger to savour on Doncaster’s big sporting day out

A fascinating renewal of the world’s oldest Classic is set to light up Town Moor for Doncaster’s biggest sporting day out on Saturday.

Horse Racing
York racecourse, the scene of last week's wonderful Ebor Festival (PHOTO BY: James Hardisty).

YORK’S EBOR FESTIVAL: day-by-day review

Of all the marvellous Flat racing festivals that run from Guineas Weekend in May to Champions Day in October, York’s Ebor meeting remains one of the most popular with racegoers.

Horse Racing
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