Following on from three successful years of racing on Good Friday, the day takes another step forward in 2017 with the introduction of racing at Newcastle and Bath Racecourses on 14 April. In addition to the All-Weather Championships Finals Day at Lingfield Park Racecourse, which offers prize money of £1,000,000, Newcastle and Bath will run cards worth £250,000 and £175,000 respectively.
The All-Weather Championships Finals at Lingfield Park is now well established in the racing calendar and will consist of the six Championship Finals, five worth £150,000 each and the Betway Easter Classic at £200,000. In addition, Lingfield Park will host a £50,000 Apprentice Handicap over 7f.
The highlight of the fixture at Newcastle will be the inaugural running of the Burradon Stakes, a £100,000 Conditions race for three year olds over the straight mile. The race is named after the village and former colliery which is only three miles from High Gosforth Park. In addition, the Good Friday card at Newcastle will feature a 1m 4f Open Handicap worth £85,000 and a 5f Conditions race for two year old fillies worth £20,000.
All of the races at Newcastle on Good Friday will count towards the final standings in the All-Weather Championships All Stars, the winners of which will each receive £10,000. The All-Weather Championship All Stars data is updated weekly online at http://awchampionships.co.uk/tables-and-leaderboards/all-stars/.
Following the multimillion pound redevelopment of the facilities at Bath in 2016, Good Friday will see the racecourse host its richest ever raceday to open the 2017 season. The feature race will be a £60,000 Handicap for three year olds over 1m 3f, with a 1m Handicap for older horses worth £50,000 and a pair of sprints, one for 2 year olds over 5f and one for older horses over 5½f, both worth £20,000.
Live coverage of racing from Lingfield Park and Newcastle will be broadcast by ITV Racing.
In addition to the racing action, all three racecourses will provide entertainment for all ages, with Easter themed activities available for children, who gain free entry. ARC will provide free food in the Stable Staff Canteen at all three racecourses on the day, as well as offering boosted Best Turned Out prizes, along with an Easter Hamper draw for all stable staff to take part in.
ARC Racing Director Stephen Higgins commented, “We are delighted to deliver two fantastic days at Newcastle and Bath to complement All-Weather Championships Finals Day at Lingfield Park. The sell-out crowds at Lingfield Park over the last three years have proven that Good Friday is a day that people are keen to go racing so we hope it’s the same with the new fixtures at Newcastle and Bath”.
David Williamson, Executive Director at Newcastle Racecourse said, “Newcastle Racecourse has been involved in the All-Weather Championships for the first time this year, and we’re excited to be introducing this landmark new fixture for the North East on Good Friday.
“We are particularly pleased to host the £100,000 Burradon Stakes, which will hopefully attract a strong field of horses.”
Jo Hall, Executive Director at Bath Racecourse said, “We are very excited to deliver our first ever fixture on Good Friday, with total prize money that is a record for Bath. 2016 welcomed in a new era for the racecourse following our multimillion pound redevelopment and to host a new feature day of this calibre is fantastic”.
In addition to hosting racing at Lingfield Park, Newcastle and Bath, ARC will continue to support the popular Open Days at Lambourn and Middleham, the latter of which has moved to Easter Monday.