As Newmarket Racecourse gears up for the Guineas Festival, we take a look at what’s in store.
With exhilarating racing, luxurious hospitality, live music, a cracking atmosphere and, of course, plenty of fabulous outfits, Newmarket Racecourse’s QIPCO Guineas Festival returns with a bang this month. Taking place on 4 and 5 May, this event sees the Flat racing season accelerate into top gear, bringing two days of world-class sport with races coming thick and fast. Highlights include the 2000 Guineas on Saturday the 4th, where the trainer of Too Darn Hot is aiming to follow up the colt’s success in the Darley Dewhurst Stakes at the Rowley Mile last autumn and cement his status as the horse to watch in 2019. You can also expect the names Quorto and Just Wonderful to crop up a lot over the course of the weekend.
On Sunday, there’s more edge-of-your-seat action for the turn of the fillies in the 1000 Guineas, a race won in 2018 by 66-1 outsider, Billesdon Brook.
Away from the racing, the Guineas is a glamorous event in the social calendar, with plenty of luxurious hospitality options if you’re keen to indulge. Feast on exquisite fare at Chez Roux or pay a visit to the racecourse’s brand-new Parade Ring restaurant, which is located on the third floor of the Millennium Grandstand and offers stunning views of the Parade Ring, plus a private bar.
Elsewhere, there’s a host of free fun to enjoy: over on the Hyperion Lawn, you’ll find live music and a variety of bars and food stands, and make sure you stick around after the final race for the renowned Après Racing parties. All racegoers get free entry to dance the evening away, with special guests including Radio 1 Breakfast host Greg James, who is making an appearance
on the Saturday night. As it’s a Bank Holiday weekend, there’s no excuse not to enjoy the fun!
If you’ve not been to the races before, the first thing you need to figure out is the kind of ticket you want as this will dictate which enclosures and stands you have access to. Options range from the new and prestigious Century Stand Enclosure, which offers an alfresco experience, to the Premier Enclosure, where you dress to impress and get access to the best facilities. For a more casual affair, check out the Garden Enclosure, where you can soak up the atmosphere in the heart of the action for minimal cost. Picnics are allowed here, and you’re welcome to bring in a bottle of bubbly, too. Find out more at The Jockey Club website.