Hereford is a jumps racecourse situated just outside the breath-taking city itself and provides fifteen exciting race days throughout the year enjoyed by locals and tourists alike. The racecourse also plays home to such events as conferences, exhibitions and wedding receptions.
Horseracing at Hereford was first recorded in August 1771 and the first hurdle race at the racecourse was in 1840. The last flat race at Hereford Racecourse was in September of 1883. After this it became a right-handed course, generally flat, but with jumps and some pretty sharp turns.
The circuit now measures 1 mile, 4 furlongs. Racing at Hereford was forced to stop during the years of World War II, but resumed again in 1946. One of the most famous days in Hereford horseracing occurred in 1975 when there were so many entrants that the races had to be divided, which led to a programme of 14 races. History was mostly recently made when the first harness race was held at Hereford racecourse in October 2007. The course has welcomed many of the best trainers and jockeys over its time, including Martin Pipe (trainer) and Tony McCoy (jockey) who have both been very successful at Hereford over the years.
The racing season at Hereford lasts all year, with races from January to December. The racecourse offers a variety of annual passes, but because Chepstow Racecourse is taking over the management of Hereford Racecourse from 2008, the annual passes are changing. These Annual Season Tickets cost from £190 for a Jumps-Only Single Badge; the Single Annual Badge costs £290 and allows you to go to 10 fixtures at Hereford racecourse, as well as 29 fixtures at Chepstow, as well as over 40 reciprocals, which include visits to Ascot. Hereford racecourse also provides some cheaper one-day admission packages to make your day out extra special. They cost just £25 and £30 and must be booked in advance. The £25 ‘Fancy a Flutter?’ option provides you with free parking, admission to the racecourse, a raceday programme and a £2 Tote voucher for betting, a drink voucher and a Burger and Fries. The £30 Classic Raceday package also gives you afternoon tea and a £5 Tote voucher.
What to do
It is suggested that you aim to arrive around an hour and a half before the first race because traffic is worse near the beginning of the races. Furthermore, it is advised that you book a table if you are intending to eat at one of the restaurants. Food and drink is not allowed into the enclosures, except for on Family Days, but there are many places to buy a variety of food at reasonable prices. To really experience the thrill of the races, don’t stay in one place for all of the races. Instead, move to different locations, perhaps the stalls to see the runners burst out or the rails near the finish line to see the horses pounding to the close. The dress code for the enclosures is smart/casual and you will see many ladies dressed up to the nines for a day at the races. Just make sure you wear sensible footwear as a lot of your day or evening will be spent on your feet.
A weekday Grandstand badge costs just £14 with a £2 discount for students, OAPs and groups of 15 or more. Weekend Grandstand badges cost £17, also with discounts for students, OAPs and groups. Children under 16 go free if accompanied by a full-paying adult. Now Tesco has made it even easier for you to go racing at Hereford racecourse; you exchange your clubcard points for a token through the Tesco website and take it along with you on raceday to exchange for your badge.
The racecourse can be easily accessed by car, rail and air.
By car: The course can be reached by the A49 and A4110 from the North and the A49 and A465 from the South, as well as the A4103 from Worcester and the A438 which goes through Hereford itself.
By rail: If travelling from London, you will take the train to Hereford from Paddington station. Hereford train station is about a 5-minute taxi ride from the racecourse.
By air: Helicopters are allowed to land at the racecourse provided permission has been given by the management.
Tel: 01432 273560
Fax: 01432 352807