The Nunthorpe Stakes

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What You Need to Know

  1. The Nunthorpe Stakes is a Group 1 flat race that's a highlight of the Ebor Festival, which takes place in York on Friday the 22nd of August 2015.
  2. The race is one of few in the UK where juveniles can race against older horses, though the youngsters rarely win
  3. Repeat winners are also rare; just two horses have won more than once, something to bear in mind if you're putting money on the race
  4. Over the years, the Nunthorpe Stakes has grown in prestige and popularity and these days it's part of the international Breeders' Cup Challenge series of races
  5. Winners usually finish the race in well under a minute. The fast and furious nature of the race makes it very popular with spectators, as well as with sports betting fans
  6. If you want to have a flutter on the action, consider opening a sports betting account as this way you can benefit from the best odds
  7. Seeing the action in person is very easy. York Racecourse is easy to find by car and it's very easy to reach from York railway station 

A Quick Overview

The Nunthorpe Stakes is held each August as part of the annual Ebor Festival at York Racecourse. A Group 1 flat race, it is run over a distance of five furlongs exactly and is one of the few events where juveniles can compete against older horses.

The race is a highlight of not just the Ebor Festival but of the UK flat racing calendar. It's also massively popular with sports betting fans, especially since online betting means you don't actually have to travel to York or even the local high street to have a flutter on the action.

History of the Nunthorpe Stakes

While the race can date its origins back as far as 1903, the current version was first held in 1922. It was this year that the event was called the Nunthorpe Stakes, after a part of York that borders the historic racecourse, and, from the start, it was run over a distance of five furlongs (or 1,006 metres).

Over the years, the Nunthorpe Stakes has grown in both popularity and prestige. Notably, in 2011 it became part of the Breeders' Cup Challenge series, meaning the winner automatically qualifies for the same season's Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint.

The Race Today

Today, the Nunthorpe Stakes is held on the third day of the Ebor Festival, which takes place at the historic York Racecourse each August. The race is run along a flat straight and is open to horses aged two years and upwards. The size of the prize on offer (around £150,000 for the winner and a pot of £100,000 for the others) means it attracts some of Europe's best horses and the level of competition is consistently high.

Getting to the Race

If you fancy seeing the action for yourself rather than watching the race on the TV or online, then the good news is that York Racecourse is very easy to reach.

  • By car, you need to follow the A64 towards York. Once this becomes the main Tadcaster Road, you will see signs for the Racecourse. Simply follow these and take the appropriate turning from the A-road and you will come straight to the course. During race meetings, there are always plenty of car parking spaces available.
  • If you're travelling by public transport, then you should take the train to York, which is served by regular trains from Leeds, Edinburgh, Birmingham, London and many other places.

For more information on getting to the York Racecourse to see the action for yourself, visit the official website, where you will also find maps of the venue and details of other race meets and events.

Betting on the Nunthorpe Stakes

The Nunthorpe Stakes is a favourite among sports betting fans, not least since it's fast, exciting and attracts some of the best horses around.

If you're lucky enough to get a ticket for York Races, you will find plenty of on-site bookies offering up-to-the-minute odds. If you're not there in person, you can still have a flutter. The best way is to sign up for an online betting account. Check out this guide to the best betting sites around and take advantage of some great introductory offers to get you started.

Facts and Records

  • One of the things that makes the Nunthorpe Stakes so special is that it gives juveniles the chance to race against senior horses. However, instances of two-year-olds actually winning the race are few and far between. High Treason was the first youngster to accomplish the feat, back in 1953, while the most recent was Kingsgate Native, who managed it in 2007.
  • No jockey has ridden more Nunthorpe Stakes winners than Lestor Piggott. The racing legend was victorious on a remarkable seven occasions between 1958 and 1978.
  • During the war years (1942-44), the race was run at Newmarket rather than at York.
  • Two horses share the record for the most wins: both Tag End and Sharpo won the race three times.
  • In terms of trainers, Ossie Bell is the most successful; he trained five winners back in the 1920s and 30s.
  • Winners routinely complete the race comfortably under the one minute mark, with a time of just over 56 seconds the current record.

Further Reading

  • Before you put any money down on a horse, be sure you know what you're doing. This guide to betting on horses will help you get started
  • York Races are a great day out, even if you don’t want to bet. Visit the official website to find out more about enjoying the action in person
  • Some of the other races you'll be able to enjoy at the Ebor Festival include the Betfred Ebor Handicap and the Lowther Stakes.

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