Fontwell Course Guide

Located in West Sussex, Fontwell Park stages National Hunt racing all year round but the highlight of its calendar is the Grade2 National Spirit Handicap Hurdle in late February. The contest is named after National Spirit, a dual winner of the Champion Hurdle in the 1940s, who won five times at Fontwell Park during his illustrious career.

The race was initially run over two miles and two furlongs as a Champion Hurdle Trial, with dual Champion Hurdle hero Comedy of Errors amongst previous winners. It is now run over two miles and four furlongs as a handicap and the David Pipe-trained Lough Derg won the race in both 2008 and 2009. The National Spirit is seen as a World Hurdle Trial and in 2006 My Way De Solzen became the first winner of the National Spirit to go onto win the World Hurdle at Cheltenham.

Star stayer Baracouda also won both races, albeit in different campaigns.

Jumps Racing

Fontwell Jumps RacingTimeform

Left handed, sharp; the chase course is a figure of eight circuit, whilst the hurdles track is oval. The stiff finish is testing on heavy ground, races often developing from far out. The fences are easy but, given the nature of the track, course specialists abound. On the chase course, the lead rarely changes hands on the run in but often looks as though it might. The paddock exit is situated halfway up the run-in on the hurdles course and can lead to horses idling/ducking out on seeing it. On soft/heavy going the hurdles course favours those who race wide.

Having a figure-of-eight configuration on the chase track, Fontwell can suit quirky horses. I don’t know if that’s because it disorientates them, or simply keeps them interested, but it does seem to help a few ‘thinkers’. It puts a premium on jumping, too, and, if you’re on a novice that’s slick over the fences, you can get away from the others thanks to wasting little time in the air. If you are behind, though, but still within shouting distance of a faster one, the stiff finish gives you a chance to get back up.

View from the saddle: Mick FitzgeraldMick Fitzgerald

Current Going

  • No current information

Current Weather

Forecast: Light showers

Temperature: 14.2° - 24.0°

Rainfall: 0.67cm

Wind: 9.7mph W

Last Update: 19/07/2018 17:00

Forecast: Light showers

Temperature: 14.2° - 24.0°

Rainfall: 0.67cm

Wind: 9.7mph W

Last Update: 19/07/2018 17:00

Replays & Results

17:50 Performance Foundations Handicap Hurdle

(Class 5) (2m 5f 164y)
Black, white disc, white sleeves, black spots, white cap (Mr Michael Moriarty)
  • Winner: Sixties Idol
  • Jockey: Brendan Powell
  • Trainer: Miss S West
  • Owner: Mr Michael Moriarty

18:25 Handicap Chase

(Class 4) (2m 1f 165y)
Light blue, white stars, white sleeves, light blue stars (Sky's The Limit)
  • Winner: Royal Plaza
  • Jockey: R Johnson
  • Trainer: Olly Murphy
  • Owner: Sky's The Limit

18:55 Gander's Gentleman Groupies Novices' Hurdle

(Class 4) (2m 3f 49y)
Royal blue and white diabolo, hooped sleeves and cap (Mrs Rita Brown)
  • Winner: Mill Green
  • Jockey: Nico de Boinville
  • Trainer: N J Henderson
  • Owner: Mrs Rita Brown

19:25 Netbet Sport Handicap Chase

(Class 4) (3m 1f 210y)
Dark blue, pink star, hooped sleeves and star on cap (Miss Caroline Fryer)
  • Winner: Midnight Bliss
  • Jockey: Bryony Frost
  • Trainer: Miss C Fryer
  • Owner: Miss Caroline Fryer

19:55 Netbet Best Odds Guaranteed Handicap Hurdle

(Class 4) (3m 1f 166y)
Dark blue and yellow (quartered), striped sleeves (Paul & Clare Rooney)
  • Winner: I'm Always Trying
  • Jockey: Harry Skelton
  • Trainer: D Skelton
  • Owner: Paul & Clare Rooney

20:25 Jack Parnell Handicap Chase

(Class 5) (2m 5f 135y)
Dark blue, grey chevron (Bgc Racing Six Pack)
  • Winner: Mrsrobin
  • Jockey: Harry Skelton
  • Trainer: D Skelton
  • Owner: Bgc Racing Six Pack

20:55 Performance Team Appreciation Handicap Hurdle

(Class 4) (2m 3f 49y)
Black and yellow check, diabolo on sleeves (Macable Partnership)
  • Winner: Rebel Yeats
  • Jockey: Edward Austin
  • Trainer: Ian Williams
  • Owner: Macable Partnership
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Address & Contact

Fontwell Park Racecourse
West Sussex
BN18 0SX
01243 543335
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