Spring might have been a little late arriving this year, but now, at last, we are moving full steam ahead into summer.
As the days get ever longer, we can at last get out and enjoy the weather with some outdoor entertainment. And what better way to conclude a busy week than with an evening at the races?
That certainly seems to be the logic behind the scheduling of the next meeting at Haydock, which is preparing for an evening of racing on Friday 8th June. Whether you’re a seasoned racegoer or you’ve never attended a racecourse in your life, it has all the makings of a great night out. And being just 10 miles north of Warrington, Haydock Park is practically on your doorstep, so why not give it a try?
What’s Happening and When?
Gates open at 4:15PM, and the first race, the Apprentice Handicap Stakes, gets underway at 6:15PM. From thereon in, it’s non-stop racing action, with a further five races throughout the evening in quick succession. The final race is the Casino Handicap Stakes, which is due to get underway at 9:15 PM.
New to Horse Race Betting?
Part of the fun of an evening at the races is to put a little money down, and while it is by no means obligatory, it definitely adds to the excitement, even if you only bet a pound or two. The runners and riders have yet to be confirmed, so there are no early tips just yet, but that doesn’t stop you from brushing up on some basic horse racing betting strategies in advance of the big night.
There are numerous strategies you can follow – for beginners, the best advice is to keep it simple, choose a horse that has reasonable odds but that might not be the out and out favourite, and perhaps consider an each-way bet. That means you still get a payout so long as the horse finishes in the top four.
Food and Drink
Haydock Park has a choice of restaurants, including Harry’s Bistro and the Kauto Star Restaurant. They are likely to prove popular with racegoers who have travelled to Haydock Park directly from work, so booking in advance is advisable.
There are also numerous food stands and snack bars at the racecourse serving fish and chips, baguettes, pies, sandwiches and so on, plus several fully licensed bars.
If you decide to bring your own food, that’s fine, but bear in mind that the course prohibits racegoers from bringing their own alcohol, and if you attempt to do so, it will be confiscated by security.
What to Wear
Anyone watching coverage of the Cheltenham Festival a couple of months ago could be forgiven for thinking that going to the races involves some sort of fancy dress. If you really want to get dressed up to the nines, there’s nothing to stop you, but for a relaxed evening of racing, smart casual is the order of the day.
If you are attending the Premier Enclosure or dining in Harry’s Bistro, the dress code is a little more formal, and gentlemen are expected to wear a jacket and tie, while for the ladies it is “best day wear.”
How to Get There
Haydock Park is located one mile from Junction 23 of the M6, just off the A580. The closest train station is Newton-le-Willows, about seven miles away. Be aware that as the event draws to a close, stewards will prevent vehicles from entering the main gate once the final race is underway, so if you have booked a taxi, it will be waiting outside.