Wednesday, 26 August 2015


Plenty of striking fillies on show at Dunstall Park on Friday evening as the racecourse held its annual Ladies’ Evening meeting. A card of seven exhilarating races was supplemented by fashion competitions, live music from tribute band Iconic 80’s and narration throughout by the legendary Derek Thompson for At the Races.

The first race served up a tricky puzzle for punters to decipher in the form of an apprentice handicap. Twelve runners lined up along with some of the top young jockeys in the country ready to take their rides. The market changed a number of times until Diamond Runner, racing off bottom weight and with an additional five pounds taken off by the talented Paddy Pilley, was backed into clear favourite. Charlotte Jenner went straight off into the lead on Dynamite Dixie, blazing a trail and attempting to steal the race from the front. However, the horse could not sustain the effort for the whole trip and weakened three furlongs out, opening the race up for a closer. That turned out to be the Mark Brisbourne trained gelding Omotesando, initially held in midfield before a perfectly-timed move by Charlie Bennett to streak past the front runner, easing towards the end yet still winning by a convincing six lengths. It was the well-fancied Diamond Runner which finished second, narrowly beating Joe Doyle on Angels Above.

Next up was a Class 5 maiden, featuring horses trained by Michael Bell, Andrew Balding and Sir Mark Prescott no less. It was Bell’s Niblawi that went off as the well-backed even money favourite, this despite questions over whether the horse was truly progressing having been close but never quite done enough to win all of its previous races. Quite a strong pace was set by Dale Swift on Pistyll Rhaeadr, tracked by Robero all the way while Niblawi was kept in midfield by Louis Steward. With two furlongs left it appeared for a moment that Robero may struggle for room, but Lemos de Souza manoeuvred the horse out to take over the lead and kept on to comfortably hold the favourite for whom the fears of ‘seconditis’ were justified.

A close-knit handicap followed, with a betting market ranging from 3/1 to 11/1 for a field of seven horses. Five of those had previous form at Wolverhampton, including last time out winner Idol Deputy as mentioned on this blog only two weeks or so ago. Once again it was a case of a front runner setting the pace before being picked off by a late finisher. Phillip Makin took So It’s War right to the front and it looked like a shrewd move when still on top with half a furlong left to go. That being said, the gelding seemed a bit one paced and Racheal Kneller swooped late around the outside aboard the aforementioned Idol Deputy to win by half a length. It is clear that the bond between jockey and horse gives rise to a level of intuition that allows such impeccable judgement and thus booking Kneller to ride is a no-brainer for trainer James Bennett.

The fourth race was a fillies’ selling stakes, named in memory of Teja Singh Driver. Emerald Bay was the heavily-backed favourite for William Haggas, fresh from monumental success at York’s Ebor meeting. In the famous colours of Cheveley Park Stud, the filly went off at short odds of 8/15. Rio Deva led, followed through by the favourite and debutant Hobnob, but soon weakened in the final furlong. It was at this point that Emerald Bay forged through, keeping on under Graham Gibbons to win relatively easily. Hobnob for trainer Nick Littmoden looked set to take second place under Wolves stalwart Luke Morris but Bryan Smart’s Madame Barker fought back to reclaim that spot for jockey Fergal Lynch. A representative for Haggas made several bids in the auction in an attempt to retain Emerald Bay, but the horse was bought by another bidder for 10,000 guineas. Gibbons landed a quick-fire double in the subsequent race as he bucked the trend for losing front runners aboard Bosham for Mick Easterby. With only one previous run on the all-weather resulting in a win at Kempton, a small section of punters, including myself, backed Bosham to outrun its odds of 11/1. The gelding did just that, making all having been well clear with two furlongs remaining and keeping on to win by almost four lengths. Dunstall Park regulars Reginald Claude and Dream Ally finished second and third respectively.

The penultimate race of the day was also the longest at one mile and four furlongs. Trainer Mark Johnston has been in fantastic form in recent months and it was his gelding Trafalgar Rock that began the race as strong favourite. Morris led aboard The Alamo and was closely followed by Joey Haynes on Full Speed, one of two horses for trainer Philip Kirby. Kirby’s other horse Bold Henmie tracked the leaders before being quickened up to lead with two furlongs left, holding off the favourite and scooting clear under a well-judged ride by claimer Phil Dennis. Johnston’s charge bridged the gap slightly late on but only really stayed on the same pace, coming second for the third race in a row.
All eleven horses lined up for the final contest, a Class 6 handicap over one mile and one and a half furlongs. It seemed that the vast majority of bets went on Scurr Mist for Keith Dalgleish as it began the race at even money having finished first and second on the last two occasions. Michael Appleby’s French Press was the early leader, but a number of other horses queued up to rival the gelding from the beginning. Phillip Makin tracked the leaders on Scurr Mist, quietly pushing the grey along to mount a challenge with a couple of furlongs to go before eventually taking over to lead in the last furlong, staying on well to win by three lengths. French Press battled well to finish second and Diletta Tommasa came late to steal third for Daniel Mark Loughnane.

As stated before, beyond the racing there were competitions held to celebrate the fashion on show. It was fitting that Sallyann Hunter, travelling from her home in Scotland as she does every year for Ladies’ Evening, was awarded the accolade of Best Dressed Lady. This loyalty really serves to display the draw of Wolves as a venue providing entertainment for the masses and a personalised service to every single individual in equal measure. Do come and experience it for yourself, you won’t regret it!

Finally, a special mention must go to another epic #WolvesForm story on Saturday. Litigant, having previously won over one mile and five furlongs at Dunstall Park in 2013 (pictured above), was the winner of the illustrious Betfred Ebor at York. Back in 2013 the horse was with trainer Seamus Durack and Wolverhampton was still Polytrack! The horse went on to win two more races for Durack, both at Lingfield and the latest one being in April 2014. That information goes to show just how great a training performance it was by Joseph Tuite, winning such a revered race after almost 500 days off the track and on the gelding’s first run for Tuite. It was an unbelievable effort by both trainer and jockey, with Oisin Murphy compounding the training preparations with an equally superb ride. It was a tremendous story all round and great for those #WolvesForm followers!

Author: Luke Archer (

Sunday, 16 August 2015


Family Fun Day at Dunstall Park meant a combination of children’s entertainment and the usual array of exhilarating racing, proving to be a match made in heaven. Pony rides, inflatable attractions and appearances from Peppa Pig kept the little ones happy whilst the parents took in the delights of the action on the Tapeta.

Rain threatened to dampen the spirits of the racegoers before and during the first race, but the weather soon brightened up and followers of Richard Fahey were left with more reasons than just the improving conditions to celebrate. The Harry Dunlop trained Pouliche attempted to steal the race from the front, with the drop back to five furlongs looking like it would work the magic for connections for most of the way. In the end though, Penwortham was a very worthy winner. No more than mid pack up to the last turn, Fahey's charge travelled fantastically with jockey Tom Eaves pretty much motionless as the colt streaked through to win in the final furlong. Having received my praise for a great front running ride on Sands Chorus in last week's blog, Eaves showed his versatility here and he is undoubtedly always one to watch at Wolves. The debutant Baltic Histoire proved to be one of the best backed horses in the race and, despite well-liked jump jockey Robert 'Choc' Thornton joining the owners Apple Tree Stud in the parade ring due to a long-held relationship with them, the filly ultimately disappointed by finishing dead last.

The second race was a claimer and proved to be a competitive affair, not least in the market with several horses close at the top of the betting. It was Roaring Rory, as opposed to a clutch of four rivals at shorter odds, which won at 4/1. Leading throughout, the gelding held off the challengers with a well-timed move by Jacob Butterfield to push on as they rounded the final bend. The winner got into a bit of a bumping match with Hot Stuff for one or two strides but there was no foul play and no enquiry was called. Favourite Thee And Me stayed on late but didn't quite have enough to reach the winner. A strong contingent of winning owners cheered him home which was brilliant to see. In fact, the photographer struggled to fit them all into the winners’ enclosure photo!

The next race took the form of a fascinating maiden. The strong favourite was Our Joy, arriving at Dunstall off the back of a run at Royal Ascot where the filly was as short as 9/1 at the off in a strongly-contested maiden. Even having considered this, it is not often a Godolphin horse is overlooked for favouritism, especially with retained jockey William Buick making the trip for the one ride aboard Spennithorne. It was the 'boys in blue' who took the race in the end, Buick riding to perfection. He got the horse well positioned straight out of the stalls, following the pacesetters and then kicking on round the bend to win with consummate ease. Buick's move into such a good position actually kept Adam Kirby on Our Joy, next to Spennithorne in the stalls, further out wide than he would have liked. At The Races pundits said remarked that it could almost be said that the move from Buick and the effect that it had on Our Joy's position won the race in the first 100 yards. The enigmatic Silvestre De Sousa was second on Caitie for Paul Cole and 80/1 shot Ice Dream outran it's odds for Tom Dascombe and Richard Kingscote to finish third.

Racecourse regulars could be forgiven for thinking that the feature race was a case of déjà vu. Old Wolverhampton favourite Reggie Bond brushed aside a 3lb rise in the weights for his previous course and distance win to take first place. Promising young jockey George Chaloner wound him up and then let him go at the perfect time to scoot clear of another course regular in Berlusca by three and a half lengths. It is clear that Reggie thrives on the Tapeta and it is fitting for this win to coincide with the first anniversary of the new surface being laid. Favourite She's Gorgeous looked well within a chance under Freddie Tylicki for James Fanshawe with a couple of furlongs left but soon weakened and perhaps could not handle the added burden of a 10lb rise in the weights.

The fifth race was the longest of the day at one mile and four furlongs. De Sousa would have fancied his chances aboard the Chris Dwyer trained Noguchi, holding the gelding up in third behind the pacesetters. No such luck though as Noguchi was soon struggling with four furlongs of the trip left to run. Born To Be Bad at the front was followed by Trimoulet who looked relatively comfortable all the way and won the day once released up the inner rail under Tom Queally. The winner posted an impressive time, 1.68 seconds less than the standard time for the trip at the track. Sweetheart Abbey came off the pace late for Kirby and turned out to be the closest threat to the victor but it was a convincing win in truth.

I was taken by the performance of Luca Cumani's Handbell at Wolves last month, pondering the question of 'Where Next?' Representing owner Sheikh Mohammed Obaid Al Maktoum in the same colours as King George winner Postponed, the filly returned to the scene of its win for a tight handicap involving five runners. However, perhaps this question was all the more pertinent as outsider of the field Lady Estella shocked the odds-on favourite to win the day. Handbell was under pressure and struggling in the last furlong or so and Lady Estella flashed down the outside of the field, fending off an inside rail challenge from You're My Cracker. The market, placing Handbell at 4/6, equally suggested that much was expected of her after the previously-mentioned impressive maiden win at Dunstall but Marco Botti's horse, under a top ride by Mark Monaghan, brought Handbell back down to earth.

In the final race, previous course winners Bread and Cisco Boy were the top two in the betting. Both jockeys in this apprentice handicap, Ross Atkinson and Rachel Richardson respectively, sought to track the pace set by front runner Dad’s Girl under Robert Dodsworth. Bread went first trying to pick off the field and Cisco Boy had an effort up the inner rail but it was Kodiac Lady, a maiden up to this point, who stayed on nicely under 7lb claimer Hollie Doyle. Pacolita ran on behind as Monaghan tried to achieve a double and Chances Are ran on far too late for Louis Steward to trouble the winner. Again much was expected after Bread's previous winning performance under De Sousa a mere four days before and the odds clearly showed that. However, a poor draw in 7 may have meant that too much energy was used up in order to get the horse across towards the rail and this may well have proved critical.

Finally, a special mention must be given to Don’t Touch, again trained by Richard Fahey. Arriving at Wolverhampton last month as an unbeaten horse, having won a Class 5 maiden at Newcastle and Class 4 handicap at Haydock, it was apparent that this gelding was quickly climbing the ranks when lining up for a Class 3 handicap. Backers would have been worried at first as the gelding dwelt through the start of the race before taking closer order. That being said, the final two furlongs were mightily imposing and eye-catching. Soon making headway just over a furlong out, Tony Hamilton pulled off the perfect ride to lead inside the final furlong and scoot home with more authority than the half a length victory suggested. Fast forward to Saturday’s Great St Wilfrid Handicap at Ripon, the key day on the calendar for the racecourse. This again represented a step up for Don’t Touch in the form of a thirteen runner Class 2 Handicap no less. Almost a carbon copy of the Dunstall win, this performance was even more striking. Following the leaders on the stands side, Hamilton again rode the horse to challenge with around a furlong left, culminating in a remarkable move to flash home to lead in the final stride. A perfectly timed effort, it is well worth watching the replay if you missed it on the day. Constituting yet another #WolvesForm story, the next steps taken by Don’t Touch will no doubt prove to be compelling viewing whatever the result.

Sunday, 9 August 2015


An impressive crowd descended on Wolverhampton Racecourse for last Thursday's afternoon meeting, a transfer from Great Yarmouth. A menu of eight races included a tricky maiden, several handicaps featuring familiar horses and an intriguing Class 4 involving unexposed 3 year olds - plenty for punters to sink their teeth into.

Amongst the jockeys appearing at the meeting were Paul Hanagan with duties for his retainer Hamdan Al Maktoum, all-weather stalwarts Adam Kirby and Luke Morris, plus Silvestre De Sousa as he chases the Jockeys Championship.

With much discussion regarding dwindling desire to win the title, De Sousa's commitment to the cause and will to succeed cannot be doubted. Matt Chapman raised concerns in his column within the Favourite pullout for The Sun, suggesting that a review of the Championship is required due to a number of nagging issues with the way that it is currently run. He advocates a points system where higher class races mean more points for jockeys and it will be interesting to see how things develop. All the same, it's refreshing to see Silvestre push himself with a view to achieving the accolade.

It was De Sousa and the previously mentioned Morris who battled it out in the first race, riding joint favourites Shadow Game and Sun'aq respectively. With Mark Johnston in such fine form many couldn't see past Shadow Game, but it was the Sir Mark Prescott debutant Sun'aq (pictured below) that showed an impressive turn of foot to scoot clear in the final couple of furlongs. Only time will tell just how good this 67,000 guineas filly could be but it was certainly an eye-catching start.

Next up was a low grade maiden handicap where the strongly fancied Duffel was bidding to erase the memory of ordinary maiden form and make the trip from Newmarket worthwhile for the Luca Cumani stable. Much like stablemate Handbell less than a month before, Duffel made an accomplished all-weather debut to win with a fair bit in hand. Behind in second was the hard-working Morris on Man of Music trained by Tony Carroll who was at the racecourse, fresh from a 2,204/1 four-timer at Brighton the previous day.

In the following race, De Sousa picked up the win he craved aboard Bread for trainer Ivan Furtado, who is enjoying a growing reputation within racing. Furtado has been cleverly utilising the reinvigorated De Sousa on a regular basis and the results are clear to see. The big race of the day was sandwiched by a seller won by the David Evans trained Just Marion under another enterprising rid by Kirby, and a Class 5 handicap won by Sands Chorus thanks to a great front running effort by Tom Eaves, holding off the fast-finishing grey, Ainslie. The selling handicap was marred by a fall from Spirit In Time by Rosie Jessop - we wish her a speedy recovery and hope that she is back riding soon.

As has been said, the Class 4 handicap represented the most intriguing race of the meeting. Five unexposed horses lined up, all from top Newmarket stables, thus showing the expanding appeal of the Wolverhampton Tapeta. Originally seen as a straight fight for favouritism between William Haggas' Zaaneh and Roger Varian's Faddwa, David Simcock's Cartier went off as the well-backed favourite - perhaps the fact that the all-conquering De Sousa was on board had a part to play in that. With Clive Brittain's Teosroyal setting a decent pace from the front, Zaaneh settled in behind in second and kick on round the bend to be eventually driven home with great finesse by Hanagan (pictured below). Faddwa, a course and distance winner on debut, and Cartier both never really got going but are definitely not horses to give up on just yet.

The winners of the last two races are both well-known to regular Wolverhampton racegoers. The penultimate race saw nine previous course winners out of a total thirteen runners line up. A sweeping run around the outside saw Idol Deputy flash home to win under local jockey Racheal Kneller, a combination that has worked well for trainer James Bennett. With what may prove to be a similarly mutually beneficial relationship, the final race was won by course regular Black Truffle, under a determined ride by another claimer, Josephine Gorden, finding the gaps at the right time. The strong favourite Paladin, a former Goldophin inmate no less, turned out to be a pal to the bookies as it finished a close second having fought back against the victor just too late.

A fantastic day's racing all round, it will be fascinating to see where some of these horses go from here. Is it a case of the sky's the limit for Sun'aq? Will Duffel have future high class races in the bag? Is Zaaneh climbing the ratings towards bigger and better things? Watch out for these horse as their reputations grow and visit the racecourse to see the beginning of yet more #WolvesForm stories.

Author: Luke Archer (

Wednesday, 5 August 2015


Much was made of rebranding the famous racing week as the 'Qatar Goodwood Festival', but it remained just as glorious.

Expectation weighed heavy on the shoulders of Richard Hughes, his final week as a jockey before beginning a new journey as a trainer. Even the most hardened punter could not begrudge his first winner aboard the Richard Hannon trained Gibeon on Thursday. A typical Hughesy ride, drawing away from the field and just holding off old friend Frankie Dettori on the favourite Keble. With a mixture of relief and delight across his face, Hughes exclaimed "I'm glad I've got one, I can retire a happy man now!" In the same race, Wolverhampton maiden winner Scooner finished a very respectable fourth - just over five lengths off the aforementioned victor. Scooner, trained by Roger Charlton, displays the growing number of top class trainers running their horses on the Tapeta at Wolverhampton Racecourse on the way to rising through the racing ranks.

Hughes started as favourite with most bookmakers to finish at top jockey at the festival but the fairytale didn't quite happen for Richard as he gained one more winner the following day on Belvoir Bay, again for his brother-in-law Mr Hannon. The close bond that Hughes has had with the Hannons has been crucial to his vastly successful riding career and I am sure that he has picked up plenty of tips from them in preparation for taking the first steps into his new vocation. All-weather followers will remember Richard Hannon Jnr's first winner as a trainer, when he sent out Unscripted at Wolverhampton in January 2014 to win on his debut under an easy ride for Sean Levey, will Hughes follow in Hannon's footsteps and have his first winner on the all-weather, under the floodlights in Wolverhampton?

It was the previously-mentioned Dettori who won the accolade of top jockey, rolling back the years with a fantastic six winners. Four of those were for Al Shaqab, the Qatari owner who retain him, and one of these was aboard Dubday - the first horse trained in Qatar to win a race in Britain. Tehse results will have delighted the new sponsors and shows the increasing influence that Al Shaqab are having on horse racing, challenging well-established names like Godolphin. Incidentally, one of the six not linked to the growing ownership powerhouse was Qatar Stewards' Sprint Stakes winner Golden Steps. A horse having started out finishing second in a six furlong maiden here at Wolverhampton, it was another nod to the #WolvesForm and represented a day where Dettori won both the Stewards' Cup and its consolation race. It was a great sight to behold Frankie's infamous flying dismount throughout the festival and it is obvious that he really is revelling in his racing again.

Despite being eclipsed in terms of overall winners, the celebrations after Hughes' final ride on Saturday were the loudest of the week. The outpouring of admiration and emotion from fans and fellow jockeys alike showed how great a servant he has been to horse racing and I have doubt he will continue to be so in his new role. Surely it is only a matter of time before Hughesy is celebrating a success as a fully fledged trainer at the celebrated Sussex Downs racecourse.

Whatever the name or sponsorship, Glorious Goodwood has a special place in the hearts of racing fans, and long may that continue.

Author: Luke Archer

Wednesday, 4 March 2015


Ska band Madness will be performing here on Friday 25 September, live after an evening race meeting, as part of their Grandslam tour.

Our Managing Director, David Roberts, said “I am delighted we will be welcoming Madness to the racecourse later this year. Madness will be the biggest act to perform at the racecourse, and this serves as testament to how successful previous live music evenings have been for Wolverhampton Racecourse and the wider Arena Racing Company group.”

Best known for chart topping hits such as “Baggy Trousers”, “House of Fun”, “One Step Beyond” and “It Must Be Love”, to name but a few, Madness have achieved international recognition as one of the greatest Ska bands of all time.

Since their rise to prominence in the early 1980’s, Madness, lead always by ‘Suggs’, have sold out arenas, headlined festivals and picked up an array of top musical accolades. The band has achieved fifteen UK top ten singles and two UK number one albums.

Most recently the band released the “One Step Beyond – 35th Anniversary” album and will be touring the country throughout 2015.

The concert will take place after racing on Friday 25 September in the Centre Course. Anyone purchasing a ticket will get to enjoy a full race meeting followed by the concert.

Tickets can be purchased online at or by calling us on 01902 390000. Keep up to date with the racecourse news and information via Twitter (@WolvesRaces) and on Facebook (‘Wolverhampton Racecourse').

Thursday, 12 February 2015


Chart topping, local rock band Slade will be performing at Wolverhampton Racecourse on Saturday 5 September, live after an evening race meeting.

Wolverhampton Racecourse’s Managing Director, David Roberts, said “It’s fantastic to have such a high profile band performing at the racecourse, returning to the Black Country where they originated from back in the late 60’s. After the great success of UB40 live after racing on last year’s feature music evening date, we are very much looking forward to Slade continuing with the success of live music events at the racecourse.”

Slade rose to fame in the 1970’s glam rock era with hits including “Coz I Luv You”, “Cum On Feel the Noize”, “Mama Weer All Crazee Now” and “Skweeze Me, Pleeze Me”. The band has enjoyed six number one singles and three number one albums, with their hits topping the charts across the globe.

The concert will take place after racing on Saturday 5 September. Anyone purchasing a ticket will get to enjoy a full race meeting followed by the concert.

Tickets can be purchased online at or by call 01902 390000. Keep up to date with the racecourse news and information via Twitter (@WolvesRaces) and on Facebook (‘Wolverhampton Racecourse’).

Monday, 2 February 2015

First Live Music Event of 2015!


First Live Music Event of 2015!

We are fast approaching our first live music event of the year on Saturday 7th February, with live after racing entertainment from 80’s band “Wham Bam Duran”. We still have hospitality packages available so feel free to contact our sales on team 01902 390000 to book your tickets now. We may not have had any live music events since December, but that’s not to say we haven’t been busy.

Our Christmas party season was a huge success, and our Charlie and the Chocolate Factory themed party went down a treat! Oompa Loompa's were on hand to entertain throughout the night, much to the delight of the party goers.

Boxing Day this year was extremely busy, with all hospitality packages sold out and thousands of families coming through the turnstiles, to share the festive spirit with us and fellow race goers. Not even the snow was able to put people off from an extremely busy day. Boxing Day also proved to be a success not only for us, but also for the Godolphin team, who in the Boxing Day snow, continued their winning ways with Greatest Journey (pictured) taking the Class 3 penultimate race in the hands of Alistair Rawlinson.


2015 is looking like it is going to be another successful year for Saturday night entertainment after racing. There are live music and tribute nights to suit everyone’s tastes, a few highlights being:

Saturday 7th February – 80’s night with Wham Bam Duran

You requested those 80's power hits, and we've booked Wham Bam Duran to perform them for you! Classics from Duran Duran, Wham, Frankie Goes To Hollywood, Wet Wet Wet and the Pet Shop Boys are all on the agenda.


 Saturday 14th March – Madness tribute with One Step Beyond

Previous years have seen race goers go wild for previous Madness tributes, we know that this year, racecourse debutants One Step Beyond with provide race goers with a fantastic night of music.


 Saturday 11th April – Abba tribute with Swede Dreams

Abba tribute band Swede dreams will be performing all the bands best known songs for what is sure to be an entertaining and fun filled night.



We’ve not been in short supply of racing since we last blogged, witnessing 13 fixtures in little over a month. La Estrella (pictured) is one of the most notable winners over this period, after success here at 1m4f in December, the 12 year old went on to win at fellow ARC and All-Weather Championship course Lingfield Park, equalling the all-weather wins record set last year at 26 by Stand Guard, who has since retired, it shouldn’t be long before La Estrella is turned out again in an attempt to break the record. From all-weather stalwarts on four legs to those on just two, king of the sand, Adam Kirby, notched his 1000th ever winner here just before the turn of the year, when he gave Copper Cavalier a fine ride for Robert Cowell and his owners. David Roberts, Managing Director of the racecourse, presented Adam with a bottle of fizz, surrounded by the jockeys he’d just fended competition off from as he has done on so many occasions here on the all-weather!



Monday, 15 December 2014

Christmas is almost upon us!

It has been a little while since we last blogged, but what an exciting period it has been for us. In recent weeks we have had the pleasure of being a part of two of Wolverhampton’s biggest events on the calendar. As well as these exciting events we have also seen the last live music act of 2014 perform and the start of our Christmas party season. Looking forward, we are preparing for our popular annual Boxing Day raceday, which once gain has seen all hospitality packages sold out!  Do not worry though, Grandstand Admission and Premier Admission tickets are still available, contact our sales on team 01902 390000 to book your tickets now.

November saw us once again host the annual awards for the Black Country Chamber of Commerce, which was a massive success. The event was compared by BBC radio WM’s Phil Upton, with Chamber President, Ninder Johal also making a presentation to members of the Chamber. The evening was a lively event and we look forward to this event next year as well.



We also had the pleasure of hosting the annual charity gala for Promise dreams, which this year carried the theme “putting on the Ritz”. As usual the evening was a great success and guests pulled out all the stops to bring glamour and glitz to the racecourse. Patrons of the charity, Susie Perry and Steve Bull made an appearance as well as popular 80’s band Go West and the evening’s surprise guest Chloe Jasmine, from this year’s X Factor!


November 29th saw our last live music act of the year, Baby Love, performing in a sold out Ringside Restaurant after racing. The last live music event of the year made way for our Christmas party season to begin the week after. We are pleased to say that they have so far been amazing festive evenings. We also have a new event this year as we are hosting a Willy Wonka themed Christmas party this Friday, which will include Willy Wonka’s Magic Chewing Gum Menu (as tasted by Violet Beauregarde) and a lively disco until late, with our very own DJ as Willy Wonka. Just a few spaces remain for this fantastic party!



Lastly the Racecourse is preparing for Boxing Day, which is one of the highlights of our racing calendar. This year has seen all hospitality packages once again sell out for this raceday, and we are sure that this fixture will see record crowds and be filled with festive fun!

To accompany these wonderfully festive racecourse events the action out on the track has been nothing short of highly competitive and enthralling. The All-Weather Championships has brought about three Fast-Track Qualifiers already on the Tapeta, with Godolphin runners showing superior strength by winning two and finishing a very narrow second in the other. Hidden Gold and Portamento (pictured) will both be going to Finals Day at Lingfield Park on Good Friday next year.


Coming into its fifth year, racegoers will be able to enjoy racing for FREE again this coming January with the Free January Racing initiative here at Wolverhampton. Upgrades are available too for Premier Admission tickets and Horizons Restaurant packages at brilliant value!

Friday, 3 October 2014

Six Tremendous Weeks

It's been over a month since we last blogged, but that's certainly not because we've been short on events and news! In the six weeks we've hosted UB40, we've staged another fabulous Ladies Evening, we've had a host of acts perform live in the Ringside Suite, we've welcomed Promise Dreams walkers across the finish line, we've held the largest UK Networking event, and somewhere in amongst all of this we've fit in over ten racing fixtures on the new Tapeta surface.

Taking you back to the final weekend in August, a capacity crowd watched a seven race evening meeting followed by international reggae stars UB40 performing live after racing. The old favourites were all played, the crowd going crazy for a spot of Red Red Wine and (I Can't Help) Falling In Love With You and a thoroughly good night was had by all. If you've not already, check out the pictures on Facebook.

We were then glad to see just a week later many of you return for the annual Ladies Evening, this year sponsored by Tile Choice. Live music was provided after racing by boy band Fate, and Derek Thompson was on hand throughout the evening bringing his Tommo TV live to the racecourse before playing MC to the Best Dressed Competition. The racegoers outfits were fantastic and it was the job of guest judge, and award winning fashion blogger, Emma Iannirilli to choose the best dressed lady and the best hat. The deserved winners were: Adele Farrell from Tamworth (Best Dressed Lady) and Cafolin Campbell from Birmingham (Best Hat).

The At The Races team were in attendance on Ladies Evening filming for a Wolverhampton Racecourse feature, keep an eye out for this on Sky Channel 415 and soon to be posted on YouTube.

It's not just off the course the crowds have been dazzled and wowed though, as racing on the new Tapeta surface has been pretty entertaining too! A few Class 2s and 3s have thrown up some very good winners and the fixtures have been attracting some big, competitive fields with some top class horses on display. Even today we have a previous Group 1 winner in our midst, Regal Parade, who won the Sprint Cup at Haydock in 2009 is engaged in the 6.20. As we near the start of another All-Weather Championship season, some of the top yards are getting their Tapeta form up to scratch, the likes of Qatar Racing and Godolphin often sending some excellent horses.

As jockeys, trainers and owners have reported, the racing has been fair and winners have been coming from the front, back, inside and out to claim victory on the new surface. We're beginning to find a few Tapeta specialists, with Fiftyshadesfreed being one in particular, racking up a hat-trick in less than a month. In his 15 starts before this the 3 year old grey had only managed 2 victories, both at Kempton Park. Now a Class 4 winner, trainer George Baker, and owning syndicate Team Fifty, must be relishing the All-Weather Championships at Wolverhampton, and a crack at some high class races with some equally impressive prize money on offer.

New bands, tribute acts and racecourse favourites have made September appearances, and we look forward to seven more live music evenings before December comes around, and the beginning of the festive season with a whole host of party nights. The full lineup can be found online here.

Two consecutive evening meetings conclude this week at the racecourse, both with eight race cards, tickets available on the gate or book your hospitality package now by calling us on 01902 390000, and Christmas parties are beginning to book up very quickly with packages already selling out, get your group together and make the booking now to avoid disappointment!

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

An excellent start to racing on the Tapeta

It's been just over two weeks since we opened our gates again to racegoers after those three months out of action. In the last 15 days we've staged 3 race meetings on the new Tapeta track which have been well attended and well received by all in the racing community.

Group 1 winning jockeys have been racking up the winners on the new surface with William Buick, Kieren Fallon, James Doyle, Neil Callan and George Baker just a few of the names to pick up one of the 21 races so far. It's the less decorated jockeys though that have been grabbing the headlines from the meetings with Rachael Kneller returning here, to her local track, to pick up a 20/1 winner with a fabulous ride aboard Arlecchino's Leap in the first race on Monday 18 August, this was followed later in the week by another superb female jockey performance when Amy Scott rode a double, getting 14/1 shot Dream Catcher first past the post, before notching a more comfortable victory aboard 9/2 joint second favourite Zed Candy Girl.

Although a few jockeys, owners and trainers have won a couple of races, there remains only one horse to do so. The racecourse has uncovered a Tapeta star in Low Cut Affair (pictured), ridden on both occasions by Declan Bates, the 2 year old has taken to the surface like a duck to water, winning by a combined 11 lengths in Class 6 company. Trained by David Evans, there is surely some valuable prize money to be won in handicaps by the filly during the fast approaching All-Weather Championship season.

Racing continues this evening with a seven race card beginning at 6.20pm. Ryan Moore makes his first trip to Wolverhampton in a while to ride just the one for Sir Michael Stoute. The 3 year old gelding, Freemason, carries the Highclere Thoroughbred Racing colours and will oppose 11 runners including two Godolphin runners, both trained by Charlie Appleby and a John Gosden runner, owned by Group 1 winning owner George Strawbridge, most notably known recently for Moonlight Cloud and Thought Worthy.

We're then on to our feature event of the year this Friday, and the biggest event at the racecourse for some time, when UB40 will be performing live after racing. Tickets are still available but availability is very limited, to book your tickets call the racecourse office on 01902 390000.

Click on the image to go to the fixture page on our website