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glentoby
18 Dec 18 20:15
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Date Joined: 12 Mar 06
| Topic/replies: 20,944 | Blogger: glentoby's blog
To include opinion of your view of which is the best/worst anywhere in the world purely from experience?

My own top 5 in each category............

Worst

1.Carlisle (flat)
2. Pontefract
3.Yarmouth
4.Newmarket
5.Huntingdon

Best

1.Chilivani
2. Longchamp (old)
3.Perth
4.Hamilton
5.Musselburgh

Where why and when?
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Report mouse muldoon December 18, 2018 8:25 PM GMT
Worst 5

1.Southwell with Tommo commentating.
2.Southwell with Tommo "entertaining" and shaking his bucket.
3.Fakenham with Tommo commentating.
4.Uttoxeter with Tommo "entertaining" and shaking his bucket.
5.Hereford with Tommo "entertaining" and shaking his bucket.
Report StillLearning December 18, 2018 8:26 PM GMT
Love Carlisle personally, but each to their own.
Report glentoby December 18, 2018 8:36 PM GMT
You need to get out more Muldoon,I forgot to exclude the Thommo factor!!!Laugh
Report SlippyBlue December 18, 2018 8:40 PM GMT
I think Carlisle is a great track as well S.L. I used to love my days out there but haven't been for ages.

Worst racecourse, it has to be Bath, a scruffy gaff track. Southwell is a bit grim as well.I'm not a fan of The Rowley Mile course at Newmarket either.

Best - Cheltenham, Sandown, Goodwood, Longchamp and Rosehill in New South Wales.
Report shlotter December 19, 2018 1:20 AM GMT
WORST
1- Plumpton
2- Brighton
3- Ascot
4- Southwell
5- Taunton

BEST
1- LEOPARDSTOWN (NAP)
2- FAIRYHOUSE (n.b)
3- CHELTENHAM
4- PUNCHESTOWN
5- SANDOWN PARK
Report Johnny_Mustang December 19, 2018 8:18 AM GMT
The Rowley Mile, as everybody knows, should be bulldozed with immediate effect. Goodwood is unquestionably the finest racecourse in the UK; and in France, look no further than Deauville and Clairefontaine.

Without hesitation though, my favourite is Saratoga for its sheer charm and the prevailing sense of history about the place. There's a sweet story about someone who asked directions to the track. He was told to "go straight ahead, take the first right then go back 100 years". That alone encapsulates everything about it for me.
Report Brian December 19, 2018 8:20 AM GMT
WORST
1- Goodwood in bad weather
2- Brighton
3- Newmarket (Rowley)
4-
5-

BEST
1- Cheltenham
2- Goodwood in good weather
3- Sandown
4- Fontwell
5- Cartmel
Report salmon spray December 19, 2018 9:06 AM GMT
I've been to a couple of jumps meetings at Southwell in the last 18 months. Admittedly in good weather but I found it perfectly OK apart from the beach that runs round the course for some reason. Sure it wasn't there when I went in the early 80s. Must be global warming.
Yarmouth is the scruffiest place I have been to in the last few years. Tend to avoid big courses though,except for one visit to Cheltenham (in Oct and even that meeting was only just about bearable for me,given my low tolerance of crowds ).
Report EastLower Gooner December 19, 2018 10:20 AM GMT
Salmon...then stay far away from Doncaster on Leger day.

Way to crowded and packed in like sardines.

Don’t go again because of that.

In contrast I’m starting to like Imperial Cup day at Sandown. Nice day all round.
Report ima_mazed66 December 19, 2018 10:27 AM GMT
A slight difference here but I was bought a card for my birthday loaded up with £100 to use at any of the dozen or so Jockey Club racecourse, were the entrance fee is deducted from the overall balance until it is all used up.

I live on London so only about three courses are close to me and I've just noticed from the T & Cs that it states that it has to be used with a year of purchase (although certain race days/meetings are excluded) and so it has expired now without me using it. They've had the £100 regardless so why does it matter when I went? If it was opened ended then if anything, the longer I left it the less value it would have been considering entrance fees can increase.

So that's £100 down the swanee that they basically got for nothing and then they say "come racing."
Report Do wah Diddy December 19, 2018 10:46 AM GMT
MY BEST EXPERIENCE WAS AT ROYAL ASCOT WHEN I WAS ASKED BY ONE OF THE QUEENS ATTENDANTS IF I WOULD HAVE MY PHOTO TAKEN WITH THE QUEEN .I TOLD THEM I WOULD BUT SHE WOULD HAVE TO WAIT UNTILL AFTER THE LAST RACE.SHE HAS A SENSE OF HUMOUR SHE DIDNT SAY CHEESE SHE SAID CAVIAR.SHE THANKED ME AND TOLD ME TO VISIT HER ANY TIME I WAS IN LONDON .BUT TO MAKE SURE THE ROYAL FLAG WAS FLYING AT FULL MAST TO MAKE SURE SHE WAS AT HOME

THAT WAS PART OF THE HIGHLIGHT .BUT THE MAIN HIGHLIGHT WAS WHEN I REALISED PRINCE CHARLES WAS WEARING THE SAME MICKEY MOUSE WRISTWATCH AS MYSELF.SHE WAS VERY SWEET SHE ASKED ME IF SHE COULD GIVE A LIFT ANYWHERE IN HER GOLD COACH .I SAID IT WAS VERY KIND OF HER BUT I WAS MEETING MY FRIEND IN YATES WINE LODGE AND HES NOT A ROYALIST AND I WOULDNT WANT TO SPOIL HER DAY IF HE STARTED SWEARING AT HER .

SHE THANKED ME FOR THE PHOTO AND GAVE ME A KISS ON THE CHEEK AND GAVE ME HER LAST ROLO AND WAVED ME GOODBYE.HER EYES SWELLED AND I SAW A LITTLE TEAR IN HER EYE AS I PICKED UP MY RACING POST AND SHOVED IT IN MY POCKET AND DISSAPEARED INTO THE HORIZON
Report Do wah Diddy December 19, 2018 11:01 AM GMT
MY WORST EXPERIENCE WAS AT CARTMEL,WHEN I WON A GOLDFISH ON THE COCONUT SHY AT THE FAIR AT THE COURSE.IT SUFFOCATED IN THE POLYTHENE BAG THEY GAVE US BEFORE WE GOT HOME .I COULD SEE IT WAS STRUGLING TO BREATHE SO I PUT SOME VERY SMALL HOLES IN THE POLYTHENE BAG SO IT COULD BREATHE BUT ALL THE WATER DRAINED OUT AND IT SUFFOCATED
Report Do wah Diddy December 19, 2018 11:01 AM GMT
MY WORST EXPERIENCE WAS AT CARTMEL,WHEN I WON A GOLDFISH ON THE COCONUT SHY AT THE FAIR AT THE COURSE.IT SUFFOCATED IN THE POLYTHENE BAG THEY GAVE US BEFORE WE GOT HOME .I COULD SEE IT WAS STRUGLING TO BREATHE SO I PUT SOME VERY SMALL HOLES IN THE POLYTHENE BAG SO IT COULD BREATHE BUT ALL THE WATER DRAINED OUT AND IT SUFFOCATED
Report kevo December 19, 2018 11:40 AM GMT
"there she goes with her nose in the air singing do wah diddy"
Report One Nation December 19, 2018 11:40 AM GMT
Interesting thread until the caps lock cretin at the end - not reading that tripe.
Report kevo December 19, 2018 12:04 PM GMT
Worst experience:

Huntingdon on Boxing Day, badly overcrowded.
Uttoxeter Midlands Grand National day, overcrowding even worse.

Best experience:

Newbury NH, clear view of the track.
Sandown NH, clear view of the track.
Market Rasen, clear view of the track.
Report jamilla14 December 19, 2018 12:10 PM GMT
I went to Pontefract races circa 1978 and Ladbrokes were sponsoring the main race on the card. They were running a competition in the racecard whereby you had to name the winner of their race (5 runners) and three of their speciality bets.
Having worked for Ladbrokes not long prior, the second part of the competition was easy enough, and the outsider of 5 was always going to give me more chance of being the winner of a free night out, for two, wining and dining at The Dragonara Hotal in Leeds (now Hilton).
Sure enough, the longest priced winner obliged and I was clicking my heels when my name was drawn out of the hat.
Unable to pull in a brothel, my best mate jumped at the chance of accompanying me one Saturday night. Going by bus, we were soon tucking into some French cuisine I couldn't pronounce and about six bottles of their Nuit Saint Georges was consumed hastily before the manager decided enough was enough and railroaded us into signing the bill off.
Bang up midnight, no trains, no buses and certainly no taxi fare in our pockets, we embarked on our 13 miles journey home using Shanks' pony.
At a quarter to six the following morning, we arrived home safely, only God knows how, and I remember that night 40 years ago as if it was yesterday.
Report Oldgit1 December 19, 2018 12:11 PM GMT
I've told this one on here before.
My worst experience was Pimlico on Preakness day 1981. I had arranged our holiday round it to back Pleasant Colony.
The town was booked up solid and we ended up staying in The Marylander Motel well out of town. They were surprised when we asked for a room for two nights…. Others rented by the hour, we could see that from the pimps and girls hanging around the lobby. We found a pair of ladies panties under the bed… surprisingly with an M&s label. We had a huge round bath and all night Blue Movies. Baltimore is the only American city we did not like. Downtown area deserted at weekends and shadowy figures watching you from doorways. I was watching two pickpockets operating on the bus to Pimlico racetrack. Then I had to take ones hand out of my pocket as we were getting off the bus. The track was overcrowded, full of drunks and pickpockets. We could only shuffle round. My wife had the strap of her hand bag round her neck and clutched it tightly. Huge crowds round the parade ring; you could not see the horses and massive lines at the betting windows.
We gave up and left before the big race and took a taxi back to town. We had our dinner, listening to the race in a restaurant and then phoned friends we have there who we had not planned to see until the next day. Naturally, Pleasant Colony won the race.
The next day’s Baltimore Sun headline was “Slim pickings for pick pockets at Pimlico” Our friends took us out to lunch and introduced us to the Mayor who asked how we had enjoyed our day when Mel had  told him why we were in Baltimore.
Report ribero1 December 19, 2018 12:17 PM GMT
Jamilla,you didn't nip down into the casino then?
Report Macintoshmatty December 19, 2018 12:30 PM GMT
I like meetings where you can see the horses for most of the race, so like the dog tracks
Don't go so much now as its easier to play on here, but used to go once a week about 30 years ago so been to quite a few tracks.

Best

Sorry I love Wolverhampton cos thats where I have most of my success these days and go about 4 times a year with family
Sandown,
Plumpton
Huntingdon
Newbury
Aintree

ok thats 6


Worst

Newmarket,
Cartmel
Warwick
Southwell
Cheltenham, sorry great on tele but you stand on the run in so only see the ends of the races so you end up watching on the big screen
Report jamilla14 December 19, 2018 12:54 PM GMT
ribero1 - with about three bob in our pockets I don't think we would have been welcome.
Report jamilla14 December 19, 2018 12:56 PM GMT
ribero1 - not sure we could have done a lot with the three bob in our pockets.
Report Oldgit1 December 19, 2018 1:13 PM GMT
Strange I seem to one of the few to like the Newmarket courses.
Although Goodwood is high on my list for the facilities and being scenic too much of the action is far away. As mackintoshmatty says the best ones are the ones like dog tracks where you can see all of the race.I include Market Rasen for that although it has a lot of minus points in other ways.
Report cardenden December 19, 2018 1:17 PM GMT
my worst experience was at newcastle,,standing next to wullie shafter,,god iv never experienced that smell before
Report Macintoshmatty December 19, 2018 1:20 PM GMT
yes Oldgit I liked Markey Rasen as well, forgot about that one, only went once but had one of my best days there
Report Macintoshmatty December 19, 2018 1:20 PM GMT
yes Oldgit I liked Markey Rasen as well, forgot about that one, only went once but had one of my best days there
Report screaming from beneaththewaves December 19, 2018 1:49 PM GMT
Best: Newton Abbot in August, particularly in the days before summer jumping.

Worst: York: it's either jam-packed in summer, you can't get a place in the stands, and half the racegoers are vomiting drunks; or it's cold and wet in autumn and you can't see half the course anyway. Either way, every race is always a 19-runner handicap won by the 5/2 fav.
Report posy December 19, 2018 5:05 PM GMT
Best racecourses
1  Ascot jumps
2  Fontwell
3  Plumpton
4  Sandown
5  Kempton jumps

Worst
1 Newbury           too snooty
2 Cheltenham        too crowded
3 Bath              dire
4 Huntingdon        boring
5 Chepstow
Report posy December 19, 2018 5:05 PM GMT
Best racecourses
1  Ascot jumps
2  Fontwell
3  Plumpton
4  Sandown
5  Kempton jumps

Worst
1 Newbury           too snooty
2 Cheltenham        too crowded
3 Bath              dire
4 Huntingdon        boring
5 Chepstow
Report Rollo Tomasi December 19, 2018 5:40 PM GMT
Worst day racing Doncaster.

On the train near Wakefield we slowed down as we approached some railway workers. As we passed them we felt a bump. I said it felt like running over a cat in a car. Later on in the grandstand this bloke at the side of me starts clutching his chest and rolls down the steps. Paramedics came but it didn't look good, I don't know how it ended. I know from the news that night the train had killed a railway worker.
Report Oldgit1 December 19, 2018 5:42 PM GMT
Newcastle winter Jump meetings can be dire because of the biting cold winds.
Chester May meetings are vastly overcrowded. Is there still a tunnel from the stands to the paddock that takes forever to get through. I knew someone who missed seeing his horse run well in the Chester Cup as he had been stuck in the tunnel.
Report cosmik debris December 19, 2018 5:56 PM GMT
Windsor is a khazi - overcrowded, expensive and that stupid figure of eight track which disappears behind the stands while the bends artificially interrupt the pace of the race. Having watched Newcastle tonight why not sell off most of the property and convert it into a 2f sprint course.
Report Lee Ho Fooks December 19, 2018 6:16 PM GMT
Worst - York on Magnet Cup day. Can't move for p1ssed up Geordies having a slash at the side of the stands....and that's just the women!
Report blackbarn December 19, 2018 7:25 PM GMT
Windsor is no longer a figure of eight trackCool
Report posy December 19, 2018 7:41 PM GMT
Are you sure blackbarn;thought it was when I was last there 2/3 years ago
Report blackbarn December 19, 2018 7:53 PM GMT
Posy, they used to use the entire figure of eight for racing, like Fontwell.   Now the bit at the top, right hand side, is only used for pulling up.   At least I hope that right as I put it into one of my racing quiz questions a few weeks ago; Nobody questioned it!Blush
Report glentoby December 19, 2018 8:00 PM GMT
Fair spread there guys of the best and worst but the best post was Doo a diddy's imvho,all in Caps to prove he is alive and well.The thing is,to meet Elton John and Boy George at a single meeting must be unique?
Report lockup December 19, 2018 8:17 PM GMT
Best
Cheltenham
Sandown
Newbury(jumps)
Windsor for years made money in 70s backing J Holts in sellers.
Leicester evening meetings

worst
Wetherby never been so cold anywhere
Redcar even in august waves crashing over sea wall grey and awful
Lingfield aw no atmosphere spoke to B Dennis said his son could do this one henceforth
Warwick flat did my lot every time
Huntingdon again no atmosphere
Report number 7 December 19, 2018 8:22 PM GMT
I have visited many times and enjoyed myself but the worst is Doncaster, on St Ledger day its very hard to mind your own business, I like everything else, never had a problem in France, if Doncaster was in the USA I wonder what would happen
Report number 7 December 19, 2018 8:23 PM GMT
?
Report posy December 19, 2018 8:42 PM GMT
See what you're saying blackbarn ;although the criticism being made was I think directed at the racing around the left hand loop which is barely visible from the stands.
Report glentoby December 19, 2018 8:50 PM GMT
Number 7 there is no such race in the UK as the St Ledger as far as I am aware?
Report foxy December 19, 2018 9:56 PM GMT
i find far to many good ones to mention but if anyone gets a chance to go racing in ireland then gowran is well worth a visit.

hardly any i dont like but not over keen on,bath,salisbury,and limerick,however chelmsford is dreadful.


posy

have you been to bath since the so called improvement in facilities ?

i would also describe huntingdon the way you do.
Report sageform December 20, 2018 8:46 AM GMT
Not just the course, memories influence my view

Best for me is always Cheltenham. Great days there in the past including a winner as a part owner.
Taunton is my local track and I used to go there a lot but the TV is preferable these days.

Newbury back in the day but not since the recent changes.


Worst is Worcester-purely because of the traffic arrangements. The racing there is good. I used to live an hour away by car once clear of the course but can remember taking 2 hours to move 200 yards after racing. I have not been for 20 years but I doubt if it has improved.
Report posy December 20, 2018 9:16 AM GMT
foxy,festive greetings

I haven't been to Bath for about 6 years. The syndicate I was in had a runner/winner there and at the time I thought the 'owners' facilities pretty dire so god knows what it was like for the paying public. If the amenities have improved since then not before time but it would have needed a lot of investment.  What with the ground issue (imo) the course doesn't have a lot going for it. 

I think you have a better opinion than me about Chepstow !
Report foxy December 20, 2018 9:27 AM GMT
festive greetings to you also posy

i went to bath the monday after the ryder cup to have a nosy at the new facilities well can you believe the course is now worse than it use to be ,there was little interest taken for those who watch horse racing.

re chepstow its the national hunt racing i like there,i dont mind the racecourse either more so now as you dont have to pay to get into wales i always felt it should have been the other way around.
Report foxy December 20, 2018 9:30 AM GMT
your right sageform nothing has change regarding traffic at worcester in fact nothing has changed at the racecourse in those 20 years other than a bit of decking on the riverside part of the parade ring.
Report foxy December 20, 2018 9:35 AM GMT
nothing regarding traffic in those 20 years has changed sageform its still a nightmare even on quiet days,in fact the only thing on the racecourse that has changed in those years are they have put a bit of decking down by the riverside side of the parade ring.
Report salmon spray December 20, 2018 9:38 AM GMT
I went to a weekend meeting at Worcester early in Sept and we had no real problems getting in and out by car.
Report foxy December 20, 2018 9:43 AM GMT
i didnt think the first post had posted sageform
Report foxy December 20, 2018 9:46 AM GMT
you were lucky salmon more often than not its a long wait.
Report sageform December 20, 2018 10:14 AM GMT
Its a shame as Worcester has some good racing. Owned by the town council which says it all I suppose. No money to improve it.
Report One Nation December 20, 2018 10:19 AM GMT
If you do drive to Worcester, you're better off paying to go in one of the council car parks in the town itself. At least you're then sat in the normal traffic, rather than trying to join it one car at a time from the centre of the course car park.

The railway station is only a 10 minute walk to the course so that's the best bet when going.
Report pixie December 20, 2018 10:49 AM GMT
Best:

Cheltenham
Newbury (especially the evening meeting in the summer)
Plumpton
Newton Abbot
Beverley

Don't really have any worst but:

Chelmsford
Bath
Windsor
Worcester
Report kevo December 20, 2018 12:06 PM GMT
Agree with sageform about Worcester, took well over 2 hours to drive there then stuck in a crawl for over another hour about one mile from the course. The one and only visit for me.

Getting out of Cheltenham is almost as bad.
Report Darlo Bantam December 20, 2018 2:15 PM GMT
Best
Cheltenham
York
Galway
Barbados
Ripon

Worst
Market Rasen
Carlisle
Galway
Wetherby
Report equine flew December 20, 2018 2:54 PM GMT
Aintree Thursday on grand national day, is the best days racing at the best venue.

Not busy, easy for bar and toilet.  4 grade 1 races plus a race over national fences.

Pricing for most stands with amazing views of the entire course about the same price as a Cheltenham tatts tickets (with no view at all)

Cracking night out in city centre afterwards, plus ladies day to look forward to on the Friday.
Report posy December 20, 2018 3:47 PM GMT
Darlo.....can't you make up your mind over galway
Report Davros December 20, 2018 4:35 PM GMT
I was on-course for the void grand national which has to be my worst racing experience. 

Bit surprised at the dislike of my ex-local, Huntingdon - decent view, open ditch in front of the stands and never too busy, although always at least 5 degrees colder than the rest of the area.  In the old days they had a silver ring in the middle of the course where they used to bet over 150%.

I don't particularly enjoy any course where one's viewing is impeded - Newmarket, Warwick, Doncaster to name a view.
Report number 7 December 20, 2018 5:59 PM GMT
sorry St Lager lots of it
Report SlippyBlue December 20, 2018 6:15 PM GMT
Whoever it was that said "Huntingdon on Boxing Day" is absolutely spot on, that is an horrendous experience.
Report Janthefish December 20, 2018 7:20 PM GMT
Best

Larkhill
Milborne St Andrew
Aintree (Thursday of National meeting)
Ascot
Aintree (ladies day)

Worst

Haydock
Warwick
Taunton
Barbury Castle
Cartmel (in bad weather)
Report Oldgit1 December 20, 2018 9:12 PM GMT
SlippyBlue
I believe that John Major goes to Huntingdon on Boxing Day.
Report Oldgit1 December 20, 2018 9:18 PM GMT
Darlo Bantam.
Yes, Barbados (Garrison Savannah) is quite an experience with an enthusiastic crowd.
Report woundedknee December 20, 2018 10:11 PM GMT
Plumpton LoveCool
Report treetop December 20, 2018 10:28 PM GMT
Best
Flemington on the day Might and Power won the Melbourne cup,awesome

Worst
Haydock,one Friday night when the coach trips were in abundance and the losers even more so.
Report kincsem December 20, 2018 10:30 PM GMT
Best
1. The Curragh
2. Epsom
3. Doncaster
4. Flemington
5. Leopardstown *

Worst
1. Sligo
2. Dundalk
3. Cork (Mallow)
4. Galway
5. Punchestown **

* within walking distance, and I've had a share of the jackpot three times, and a treble for 1k+
but I don't get excited by the place.

** I've never been, but was driving to Kilcullen from Dublin a few weeks ago.
One of my dogs vomited chunks and chunks, a real bellyfull.
I pulled over to try to mop up the mess ...... at the main gate of Punchestown racecourse.
Report Darlo Bantam December 20, 2018 11:49 PM GMT

Dec 20, 2018 -- 3:18PM, Oldgit1 wrote:


Darlo Bantam.Yes, Barbados (Garrison Savannah) is quite an experience with an enthusiastic crowd.


More than the crowd too. There was some brilliant rapport between the jockeys and sections of the crowd. Seemed to be plenty of side wagering going on away from the main grandstand area too.

Report davethehat December 21, 2018 1:09 PM GMT
GOD winning the 1983 benson and hedges gold cup AT THE WORLDS GREATEST COURSE YORK on caerleon. Legend jockey and brave horse on bad ground. I was 15 then but seems like yesterday. Love the memories
Report shlotter December 22, 2018 2:46 AM GMT
WORST
1- Plumpton. Nothing but horrible memories of all the times I went. Strange but I win regularly there, but I wouldn't be bothered if it became a housing estate.
2- Brighton. One place I absolutely have to say I couldn't even pick a winner of a two horse race...
3- Ascot. Especially the Royal meeting. Dad used to love the racing there, I have strong opinions about the place. Went there for Betfair Chase day a couple of years back and I won't go back ever again.
4- Southwell. I would recommend this place to become a housing estate.
5- Taunton. I vowed never to return after seeing Mr Johnson win a race he should have most definately been slung out for, it was a TV race on a Saturday, he would have definately been disqualified. God knows how he survived the Stewards Enquiry that day, but I think the stewards there suit themselves.

BEST
1- LEOPARDSTOWN (NAP) Spiritual home.
2- FAIRYHOUSE (n.b) Spiritual holiday home,
3- CHELTENHAM. Great action, yes it's crowded, but arguably the most informed bunch of racegoers around. Don't know if I will go festival this year. Once I have a touch I normally duck out of Club singing!!
4- PUNCHESTOWN Great festival, come on leaps and bounds.
5- SANDOWN PARK. Good track and good facilities.
Report iswearitsoath December 22, 2018 8:01 PM GMT
great thread, love this sort of thing

Good:
Hexham - lovely on a nice summer's day. great viewing, friendly crowd, pleasant town with good real ale pubs
Aintree - just something about the place I love
Market Rasen - scenic and fantastic viewing, especially if high up in the stands
Carlisle - something about the place I like
Cheltenham - natural amphitheatre and great sense of history

Surprised at the negativity about Huntingdon. It is cold and not very scenic, but great viewing and the ditch in front of the stands is some spectacle.

Worst:
Galway - Plate day. Miles from the town, not scenic and far too crowded. don't like layout of steeplechase course either
Uttoxeter - midweek summer meeting. Not a racing crowd -no racegoers bothering to watch horses come into winner's enclosure
York - overrated. Flat, boring and overcrowded. All my friends love it though
Newcastle - Miles from action, concrete jungle, staff not very friendly. Average viewing and rather faceless
Doncaster - as above. cavernous and the viewing is awful
Ludlow - looked a nice course and lovely town, but they called a very early inspection and cancelled by 10am before a warm sun came out

That said, I don't actively hate any course, they all have their good points and it's always a good experience to go racing in my opinion
Report glentoby December 22, 2018 8:33 PM GMT
I could put this as either best or worst depending on how I view it e.g sober or contemplative.In the early 2,000s I was sitting in a bar in Lefkosia (Nicosia) prior to going racing.Sitting smoking a nice Monte Cristo and studying form just a few yards from the Green Line,all was well,my OH had just had an encounter with the UN guys in what used to be Helens Bar,spent a fortune shopping and refused to believe what the marks on the bar signified.

A large fellow sitting opposite beckoned me over and said "I cannot go to the races,something has come up,here is my race card,I have marked most of the winners so take it and have a good day" I asked "Have you studied hard then,I have and I can't pick anything definite"? He replied "Those I have marked are my own horses and they will all win,have a good day" He then left with what looked like a pair of larger minders and drove off in a large Rolls Royce which was painted gold.

We went to the track and backed the first 2 horses which won,my OH then complained of being hungry so we left,out of curiosity I checked the results in the next days Cyprus Post and found that 5 of the 6 had won.Still seems incredible even though the racing was low level and confined to Cypriot bred horses.
Report PHS December 23, 2018 9:26 AM GMT

Dec 20, 2018 -- 8:54AM, equine flew wrote:


Aintree Thursday on grand national day, is the best days racing at the best venue.Not busy, easy for bar and toilet.  4 grade 1 races plus a race over national fences.Pricing for most stands with amazing views of the entire course about the same price as a Cheltenham tatts tickets (with no view at all)Cracking night out in city centre afterwards, plus ladies day to look forward to on the Friday.


Aintree Thursday on grand national day

Is there a name for something that's impossible or doesn't make sense I wonderConfused.

Report Oldgit1 December 23, 2018 9:37 AM GMT
glentoby.
I once went into a Cyprus betting shop as a horse I was interested in was running in England. He said that they did not take bets on English racing only sports bets. When I mentioned that I was going to the local track the next day he said not to as most of it is fixed by the local mafia. You must have met the Godfather. 
There was continuous rain the next day so did not go to the meeting.
Report The Knight December 24, 2018 12:29 PM GMT
All our tracks have something about them and are only spoiled by the lunatic drinking days - Donny on St Leger day is the worst.

I've been racing 175 days this year, from Carlisle to Newmarket and loved it all - especially Southwell on cold afternoons. Why people are so down on this track I don't know. Kick-back is a fault but that surface is an aid to punters who do their homework.


But best day of the 175 was, oddly enough, at Haydock on the last Friday in September. I thought it would be packed out with drinkers but it was a lovely day. A good crowd, who were well dressed and well behaved, and a beautiful sunny autumn afternoon with excellent card. A big surprise in my first visit there in 11 years.


Like I say, an afternoon at any of our tracks is time well spent for me - and, indeed, our racing is the only thing left that keeps me in this otherwise shabby and broken country, sorry to say.
Report foxy December 24, 2018 1:07 PM GMT
what a great post the knight.
Report McCoy Carp December 24, 2018 2:35 PM GMT
Nearly thirty years ago I had £160 stolen at Stratford. Since then I've never stuck any money in my back pockets Sad
Report democrat December 24, 2018 2:43 PM GMT
Will I see you Wed. Jimnast ? If so I'll make a point of looking out for you.
Report foxy December 24, 2018 4:47 PM GMT
hello democrat yes i will be there both days

seasons greetings
Report call it a day December 24, 2018 4:55 PM GMT
Best....
Cheltenham. Yes, pricey and crowded. But best atmosphere ever.
Ludlow,
Fakenham
Hexham
Aintree

Worst...
Chelmsford
Bath
Stratford
Windsor
Kelso

Most improved...Newbury. Where they now welcome punters and have abandoned brown coated Gestapo
Most at risk....Sandown. Where quality of racing deteriorates yearly, where investment is low, a racetrack thinking it can rest om its laurels.
Report foxy December 24, 2018 5:15 PM GMT
never known anybody not like kelso call it a day.
Report screaming from beneaththewaves December 24, 2018 5:58 PM GMT
I remember Terry Allen one day standing among the punters in front of the bookmakers at Hereford and suddenly shouting, "Look out! Pickpockets!" and laughing as three or four blokes suddenly scarpered.

I don't know whether he'd actually spotted them dipping, or whether he'd recognized them and just wanted to flush them out. Either way, it worked.
Report democrat December 24, 2018 6:22 PM GMT
Same to you and your good lady. You were missed at Great Yarmouth this year but pleased to hear you are venturing South in December if not in September.
Report Deptford December 24, 2018 8:21 PM GMT
Worst,Goodwood 1992, Riston Lady geting beat a short head in nursery, cost me £27 grand, had doubles and treble with Philidor and Lochsong, still hurts now, best, two really, Cheltenham, Ballyandy winning the bumper, had treble with Un Temps and Diego Charmil, got the photo finish print in my front room, betting than looking at Babestation, Royal Ascot,Queen Mary,Rizeena, still cant believe the price, could not see her getting beat, that was my biggest single win and dont think it will ever be bettered
Report N-east Correspondent December 24, 2018 8:42 PM GMT
Best - Ebor meetings back in early 80s - Sharpo, sluicing through the mud, Protection Racket getting me out of a hole in the ebor
Glint of Gold hacking up at an unbelievable 2/1 against when it should have been 2s on. Great days. Ayr gold cup when it was a Friday was also special they've runined it now packing it into a card full of more unrealistic handicaps on a Saturday. Been to a couple of Chelt festivals and least said about finding winners the better however did see Dawn Run and Dessie winning their gold cups the latter was most emotional ive seen a racecourse grown men crying. Beverley during a couple of summer holidays was also very enjoyable.

Worst Scottish Grand National day at Ayr - jesus wept Cry my wife organised a weekend away for my 50th and her and my daughters went along too
they basically spent the whole day in total shock (we/they are not prudes or sheltered) - I drink but jeez this lot took it to several different levels and it was embarrassing to say the least, it still gets brought up to this day. Left before the bumper and I was winning Laugh
Report glentoby December 24, 2018 8:47 PM GMT
Oldgit,where were you when this happened? Plenty of betting shops that will take a bet on English Racing but refuse "local".Betfair have or had offices going out of Pafos.

Back then though no such thing,perhaps ryanwee or ilwab will remember Makaritos who posted on the RP forum.He owned a filly he raced at Lefkosia and was once advised to "take her to the coast for a few months". He did and she and he were ok,a while later though a "ringer" ran and won.

Was found in a pathetic shallow grave next to a road,buried quickly using a JCB.On the course is only "Tote" betting,the real market is among the bar owners as "agents".Non Cypriot horses are now allowed to compete but to date the betting is the same.

If the UK had become a "Tote only" betting market it would not only destroy the industry,the related crime rate would be ungovernable.Those that think bookies are crooks would perhaps change their minds,view them as accountants and treat them accordingly and they won't go wrong!!!
Report Oldgit1 December 24, 2018 10:27 PM GMT
glentoby:
I'm not sure of the year but around 1996.
We were staying in Larnaca and that was the only 'Betting Shop' I saw. I broke two ribs almost as soon as I arrived so it was about ten days before we traveled anywhere else.
Report glentoby December 24, 2018 10:49 PM GMT
Changed a lot oldgit,I was on the "Promenade/Boulevard in Larnaca not too long after you were there.Looks like Southern France.I was looking for the Black Cat Pub,the guy I spoke to pointed to the Bank Of Cyprus behind and said that is it.My first visit was bombed out aircraft and coming through Larnaca the locals with carts drawn by donkeys.

I know many there now and you are not wrong regarding the racing.

I hope you and your have a happy and peaceful holiday period and I will add should you ever return in future let me know and I will make sure you are looked after properly.I do despise the Jockey Club for accepting the flag on the mountain but I am neither Greek or Cypriot and that is political.
Report Oldgit1 December 25, 2018 12:47 PM GMT
glentoby:

We had previously twice been to Paphos and liked it and once to Kyrenia in the North an ill judged place to travel to for a New Year celebration :-)
Apart from Turkish troops on every corner and shelled buildings in Famagusta and other places, power cuts every night we stayed in a hotel full of miserable Germans. They sat glumly through the gala dinner and departed moments after midnight without as much as Happy New year. They hardly spoke to each other far less to us. It was a problem getting to Kyrenia. We were travelling on Boxing day and I got a phone call just as I was leaving work on Christmas eve telling me that our flight had been switched from Heathrow to Gatwick. That actually suited us but when we got there we found that the airline had been unable to contact most of the passengers. They had to round them up at Heathrow and bus them over and we were five hours late in departing and not getting to our hotel until after 3 am. Changed rooms twice due to problems with the plumbing.   
Unfortunately our travelling adventures are over now so I can't take up your kind offer.
Report glentoby December 25, 2018 10:49 PM GMT
Such a shame oldgit and you made me ponder about the passage of time.I have had a wonderful couple of days with the youngsters enjoying the family etc,nothing usurps the family here.They know though my passion for horseracing and that it goes far beyond betting.

Here as in Cyprus the races are invariably "fixed",same as trotting in Malta and not likely to change any time soon and that is why the UK stands head and shoulders above the rest despite my view of the BHA.

Should you ever manage you are more than welcome,failing that I would be more than happy to get you to your nearest course and have a day out with you at no cost to you.
Report Oldgit1 December 26, 2018 8:50 AM GMT
I noticed when we were in Malta that they seemed to train their Trotters on the roads.
It’s not age that has caused my problems but the effects of antibiotics I was prescribed for prostate and urinary infections. Refuse Cipro or Fluoroquinolones if they are ever suggested to you as they can cause a vast range of problems. Many are like a time bomb and happen long after the initial course of drugs and can be triggered by other drugs. After much pressure from sufferers of Fluoroquinolone Toxicity Syndrome the EMA (European Medicines Agency)  held an open conference in London in June attended by affected patients from all over Europe. As a result some versions of the drugs will no longer be prescribed and others restricted in use to more serious infections where no other drug will help.
In January all British doctors will be getting a letter with the EMA findings and patient information leaflets are being updated by the MHRA (The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency regulates medicines, medical devices and blood components for transfusion in the UK ) 
In my case each time I was prescribed the drugs I stopped them within a few day as I developed tendonitis. Each time it eventually cleared up but in May 2015 another medication evidently triggered what mystified doctors said was a form of neuropathy or even CMT (Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease ) One Monday I was out for over five hours at a horse show, on the Friday out and about at the races for seven hours. Nine days later I was having difficulty in walking unaided.
This is the link to the EMA conference if anyone wants to watch it. It lasts for over four hours but can be watched in parts on winter days when racing is off. You don’t just need to be prescribed the drugs as they are used on animals and in fish farms so are in the food chain.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1vao8o5NGUc&t=4399s
Report lovegod December 26, 2018 9:12 AM GMT
Bangor is a strange set up, no stands, facilities fairly basic.
Report McCoy Carp December 26, 2018 9:36 AM GMT
When I was in my late teens early twenties, backing three winners at Fontwell and running along the centre of the course going mad when one of them won. My memory has gone a bit but seem to remember someting about the Duke of Albuquerque being there? The course had so much atmosphere back in those days, so many characters, but my favourite race track as such was Pompey Dogs, I loved an eveing out there & still miss it now Sad
Report OliasOfSunhillow December 26, 2018 10:30 AM GMT
Royal Ascot, queues so bad for toilets that able bodied people were having to use the disabled toilets and disabled people were literally in the queue behind streams of able bodied but desperate folks. Restuarants with vacant tables but being refused entry because I was in a suit and not top hat and tails despite entrance to all these restaurants being in my vicinity. It was particularly bad for female race goers that day but the male toilets were awash with piss and vomit. To cap it all and I had left by then, a major brawl broke out towards the end of racing in the bar area.

York is not the ascot of the north, Ascot is the York of the south
Report SlippyBlue December 26, 2018 2:12 PM GMT
One of my best moments racing was being in Australia, I lived in Lane Cove, North Sydney and got a lovely cushy sales job with a car so I was sorted for the year,1993. Dermot Weld sent Vintage Crop down under for the Melbourne Cup. Lots of my work colleagues were punters and I spent the previous 2 weeks before the day of the race telling all who would listen to me that Vintage Crop was a good thing, a seriously top class horse running against the Aussie handicappers and he won sweetly enough and paid for my rent for a couple of months, happy days.Happy
Report irishone December 27, 2018 8:25 PM GMT
Best
Fontwell , york , chrltenham , galway, windsor
Worst
Brighton, linfield, newmarket, yarmouth

Had a two day stag at goodwood, absolutely plastered woke in hilton avisford park, message in lipstick on mirror, see yer later, went next day ,  strange ugly woman behind bar kept serving me free drinks, waited for a private moment asked why the free beer ? she slapped my face .
Report irishone December 27, 2018 10:53 PM GMT
Been to flemington. a couple of times for the cup
too Overcrowded for me worse than g c day at cheltenham

Liked ascot near perth, nice and easy to get about, easy beer and food

In the states philadelphia park , welcoming and roomy
Tampa small but mobility ok lovely restaurent

Ireland you have to do ballinrobe and rosscommon
Tiny footprint racecourses
Kids betting on a one euro tote, full of farmers and dodgy bookies
Punchestown like a concrete housing estate
Clonmel great viewing some clever feckers about there !
Report sageform December 28, 2018 9:16 AM GMT
Santa Anita on the day that Raven's Pass won the classic is one I will always remember. My son was based at UCLA at the time and got us tickets plus an outside picnic table and racing went on from around 11.30 onwards. Cloudless sky, warm temperature, great views of eh mountains, loads of European winners and made enough dollars for 4 of us to have an hour at an Irish Pub in Pasadena followed by a very good steak meal nearby. Sadly the Americans tore up the track surface after that meeting which exposed how reliant they are on dirt.
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