Epsom Downs Course Guide

Many consider Epsom’s famous switchback course to be the ultimate test of a thoroughbred. Runners over the Derby and Oaks distance of a mile and a half face a steep uphill climb followed by a demanding turning descent, they turn right then left and, in the home straight have to overcome a pronounced camber and a stiff last furlong to the line. It ought to produce freak results but, as 250 years of history have demonstrated, Epsom invariably identifies the best colts and fillies of their generation.

The Derby meeting – now slimmed down to two days – is the undoubted highlight of Epsom’s calendar, where other feature races include the Group 1 Coronation Cup, the Diomed Stakes, Woodcote Stakes and the five furlong ‘Dash’. The spring meeting in late April boasts two valuable and historic handicaps in the Grand Metropolitan and City and Suburban together with the Blue Riband Trial, while the rest of the Epsom season consists of enjoyable evening racing and a popular bank holiday fixture in August.


Left handed, undulating. A 'U' shaped course, which, due to its bends, camber and pronounced downhill gradients, very much favours the handy type. Races up to eight and a half furlongs are very sharp, meaning those ridden prominently hold an advantage. The five-furlong course is fastest in the world, downhill virtually throughout, and as such an early prominent pitch is essential. In testing conditions, the runners tend to switch towards the stands-side rail for the better ground.

Balance is at a premium for a horse racing around Epsom and it’s not merely a question of size. Big ones and small ones have it - and some just don’t. Whatever they’re like physically, though, they need to handle the hills, turns and cambers, as this track tests every muscle. Runners really get rolling round Tattenham Corner and, while people say suspect stayers can last home over middle distances, I reckon you have to stay the trip thoroughly to win. A sure-footed speedster is needed for the sprints.

View from the saddle: Jason Weaver
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Last Update: 15/10/2019 17:00x

Upcoming races
14:00 IDF 2020 Tickets On Sale Tomorrow Nursery
7f | Class 4 | 2YO only | 7 ran
  • Winner: Afraid Of Nothing 4/1 2Fav
  • Jockey: Oisin Murphy Trainer: R M Beckett
  • Owner: Qatar Racing Limited
14:30 Investec Derby 'Wild Card' Conditions Stakes
1m ½f | Class 2 | 2YO only | 3 ran
  • Winner: Grand Rock 5/4 Fav
  • Jockey: James Doyle Trainer: W J Haggas
  • Owner: Mr Hussain Alabbas Lootah
15:05 Season Finale Handicap
1m 2f | Class 3 | 3YO plus | 5 ran
  • Winner: Torcello 9/2
  • Jockey: Megan Nicholls Trainer: S Lycett
  • Owner: Mr Dan Gilbert
15:35 Kids Takeover Handicap
1m ½f | Class 3 | 3YO only | 6 ran
  • Winner: Marronnier 4/1 2Fav
  • Jockey: S M Levey Trainer: S C Williams
  • Owner: Gg Thoroughbreds Iii
16:10 Apprentices' Derby Stakes
1m 4f | Class 4 | 3YO plus | 8 ran
  • Winner: King Of The Sand 14/1
  • Jockey: Rhys Clutterbuck Trainer: G L Moore
  • Owner: Jacobs Construction & Mr J Harley
16:45 Back To The 80's NYE Party Novice Stakes
1m 2f | Class 5 | 3YO plus | 7 ran
  • Winner: Edinburgh Castle 5/4 JFav
  • Jockey: Oisin Murphy Trainer: A M Balding
  • Owner: Mrs Fitri Hay
17:15 Spectacular Christmas Parties At Epsom Downs Handicap
7f | Class 4 | 3YO plus | 8 ran
  • Winner: Zeyzoun 9/4 Fav
  • Jockey: George Wood Trainer: C F Wall
  • Owner: Mr Michael Bringloe

Address & Contact

Epsom Downs Racecourse
Epson Downs
KT18 5LQ
01372 726311

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