Downpatrick Course Guide

One of two racecourses in Northern Ireland, Downpatrick is reputed to be the oldest racecourse on the island of Ireland, with the first race meeting being recorded all the way back in 1685. Remarkably, the Byerley Turk, one of the three foundation stallions of the thoroughbred breed, is reputed to have run at the County Down track in 1690.

Downpatrick has nine fixtures of National Hunt racing every year from March through to October and the highlight of the racing calendar is the marathon Ulster Grand National which takes place in March.


A narrow, right-handed track with a circuit of around eleven furlongs. This is not a track for a long-striding horse, given the numerous undulations and turns. There are six fences to a circuit of the chase course, with the last two close together before the uphill home straight of over a furlong.

This is a real horses for courses track. When you come past the winning post, it’s like going off the edge of a cliff! The drop is unbelievable and the first time you ride down it is an experience. It’s not an easy track to ride and you just have to try and give your horse as many breathers as possible as you go up and down all the hills. In terms of ideal position, I would always say the handier the better, but most would be of that view so sometimes they can go too quick in front as plenty want to be prominent and in those cases, one can get away with being a bit off the pace early. The last furlong-and-a-half is a very stiff test. The fences there were always some of the easiest anywhere in Ireland.

View from the saddle: Charlie Swan
Advance Going
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Last Update: 18/07/2019 17:00

15:00 Plus2Print Remembering Tony Oakes MBE Hurdle
2m 1½f | 4YO plus | 3 ran
  • Winner: Avenir D'une Vie 6/5 JFav
  • Jockey: Rachael Blackmore Trainer: H de Bromhead
  • Owner: Gigginstown House Stud
15:30 Tony Patterson Sports Grounds
C & G | Maiden Hurdle
2m 3f | 4YO plus | 9 ran
  • Winner: Construct 11/4 JFav
  • Jockey: D J McInerney Trainer: J C McConnell
  • Owner: Derek Kierans
16:00 Irish Jockeys Association Mares Maiden Hurdle
2m 3f | 4YO plus | 8 ran
  • Winner: Inishbel 5/2 Fav
  • Jockey: B J Cooper Trainer: Colin Bowe
  • Owner: Patrick Joseph McCartan
16:30 North Down Marquees Handicap Hurdle
2m 3f | 4YO plus | 14 ran
  • Winner: Peaches And Cream 5/4 Fav
  • Jockey: J M Moore Trainer: G P Cromwell
  • Owner: Ms Kiva O'Brien
17:00 Irish Jockeys In Support Of Downpatrick Racecourse Maiden Hurdle
2m 6f | 5YO plus | 8 ran
  • Winner: Happy Lad 5/1
  • Jockey: A W Short Trainer: H P Finegan
  • Owner: Hugh Paul Finegan
17:35 Supporting St Patricks Coastal Ride Handicap Hurdle
2m 6f | 4YO plus | 8 ran
  • Winner: Canadian Steel 9/4 Fav
  • Jockey: C J Orr Trainer: N C Kelly
  • Owner: Mrs Shauna Kelly
18:05 Two N & M's Flat Race
2m 3f | 4YO to 7YO | 7 ran
  • Winner: Saint Or Sinner 7/4 2Fav
  • Jockey: Mr J J Codd Trainer: G Elliott
  • Owner: Pioneer Racing

Address & Contact

Downpatrick Racecourse
24 Ballydugan Road
Co. Down
BT30 6TE
028 4461 2054
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