The Carlisle Racecourse is a track that caters to thoroughbred horse racing and is situated in Blackwell, which is near Carlisle, Cumbria. The venue has been holding races since as far back as 1904, having previously been located elsewhere in Carlisle.
The History of the Carlisle Racecourse
Carlisle has been hosting horse races since as far back as 1559. This was at the previous location for the racetrack in the region, which was known as Swift. It was at this racing that the Carlisle gold bell was first presented.
This bell was presented by a member of the royal family, Lady Dacre. It was inscribed with a phrase in Latin that translates to “The Swiftest horse this bell to take for my lady Dacre's sake.” Another bell was later donated by Henry Baines in 1599, who was then the Mayor of Carlisle.
This is why the tradition of presenting bells to the winner of the feature race that takes place in Carlisle each year still exists. This is for the Carlisle Bell race that takes place in June and it is one of the oldest races that still runs annually.
As mentioned, the Carlisle Racecourse moved to its current location in 1904. It did not take too long for the first grandstand to be but following the move. One of the more historic facts about the Carlisle Racecourse came in July 1920 when Tote betting was first operated at a racecourse in Great Britain.
It was in 2002 that renovation work at the Carlisle Racecourse was completed. This saw the erection of a brand new grandstand.
The current Carlisle Racecourse is a right-handed track and its finish is up a steep hill. There are both jumps and flat races that take place at the venue. In total, the course is a little more than three furlongs in length.
In general, the turns on the track are pretty easy and straightforward. For more testing ground conditions, the stand side of the track will be preferred by jockeys as it is a bit firmer.
For most of the year, the ticket prices at the Carlisle Racecourse stay the same. Usually, it will be cheaper to purchase tickets in advance online rather than turning up on the day and buying tickets at the gate.
General admission starts at £12 and there are a number of different packages that you can purchase. For example, you can buy tickets that have parking or special drinks or betting offers.
Tactics to Consider
For longer races, it is preferred being in a good position come the time of the home turn due to the steep hill that awaits toward the finishing line. The ideal position is in the centre of the track on this home stretch. The turns are quite easy but they do require a lot of stamina, particularly for younger horses.
Generally, the going is tough at the start and this leads to a distinct separation between the leaders and the chasing pack for longer races. For sprints, you will normally see the horses at the Carlisle Racecourse fanning out more so. Either way, the steep hill at the end of the race takes a serious amount of effort.
Naturally, the Carlisle Bell is the most notable race that takes place at Carlisle Racecourse each year. This usually takes place in June and it is a handicap race that runs over seven furlongs and 200 yards. It is open for horses that are at least three years old and the winner gets presented with a set of iconic bells.
On the same day of the Carlisle Bells is the Eternal Stakes. This is another popular handicap race on the flat. You also have the Cumberland Plate which has been staged since 1842. There are also two popular National Hunt races that take place in the winter months. These are the Colin Parker Memorial Intermediate Chase and the Houghton Mare’s Chase.
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