Musselburgh Racecourse’s Jumps season launches on Thursday (6th November) with £650,000 in prize money spread over 11 meetings.
The John Smith’s Scottish Cheltenham Trials meeting in February is the stand-out feature of Musselburgh’s season with prize money up from £140,000 last year to £155,000. The fixture is now firmly established alongside the Scottish Grand National meeting as one of the highlights of the Scottish National Hunt season.
However, opening the season at the East Lothian track is the Racing UK Club Day, the first in a double header on Thursday and Friday (6th and 7th November), which boasts £117,000 prize money over the two days and is followed by the Saltire Race Day on 28th November and the William Hill Winter Race Day on 8th December.
The traditional New Year’s Day meeting on 1st January continues to grow in popularity and already all hospitality packages in the Epperson Restaurant and Lothian Suite are sold out.
Musselburgh Racecourse commercial manager, Sarah Montgomery, said: “New Year’s Day has really taken off and is attracting a loyal and family-orientated crowd who have welcomed an alternative way to blow away the Hogmanay cobwebs. Lots of marquees and covered facilities will be in place if required to protect against the winter weather and last year there was a cracking atmosphere about the course.
“With prize money of £115,000, including a £40,000 feature hurdle race and coverage from Channel 4, the quality of racing appeals to our regular racegoers in addition to families celebrating the festivities.”
Two other meetings on 5th and 16th January are the curtain-raisers for the John Smith’s Scottish Cheltenham Trials Day on Sunday 1st February, featuring two £25,000 Listed races, the Scottish Country Hurdle and the Scottish Triumph Hurdle Trial.
With four £20,000 races and Scotland’s richest hunter chase event (£10,000), Musselburgh is proud of having developed a genuine Cheltenham trials event which gives racing fans a chance to spot the potential stars of the Cheltenham Festival proper.
Sarah Montgomery added: “The jumps season promises to be every bit as successful as our Flat campaign and with total prize money at a record high, we hope our flagship events at New Year and in February will continue the upward trend or larger crowds and attracting quality horses and trainers from across the UK.”
All students will benefit from free admission on the opening jumps fixture on 6th November when producing appropriate identification. Gates open at 11am and first race is at 1pm.
Full details of Musselburgh’s National Hunt fixtures can be found at www.musselburgh-racecourse.co.uk