DONCASTER

  Badges through the decades

Brief History

1595

Early maps show there to be a racecourse in the vicinity of Doncaster at Wheatley More.

1600-1746

Significant evidence exists to show that racing took place regularly at Doncaster, supported by the local Corporation. Unfortunately only 6 runners turned up for the entire meeting in 1746 and racing ceased.

1714

Flying Childers is bred by Leonard Childers, whose Great Grandfather had been Mayor of Doncaster. The horse remains unbeaten throughout its career and the Flying Childers Stakes, run annually at Doncaster, commemorates the great horse.

1751

Racing takes place again at Doncaster when it is coupled with a very successful Race Ball.

1764

The Corporation Plate is competed for the first time, with a Gold Cup being added to the prize in 1766.

1776

Anthony St Leger (originally Sellinger) proposes that a 25 guineas sweepstake takes place for 3 year olds on the Cantley Common part of the racecourse. The inaugural running of this race over two miles, not yet called the St Leger, is won by Allabaculia, owned by Lord Rockingham and ridden by J Singleton. There were 5 runners in this first running.

1777

The first occasion the St Leger, still not named as such, is run on the Town Moor course. A grandstand is constructed, paid for by selling silver badges at 7 a time. The stand cost 2637 to build and each buyer of the silver token was given free entrance to the racecourse for life.

1778

The St Leger is run for the first time under its current name. It is won by Hollandaise, owned by Sir Thomas Gascoigne and ridden by George Heron defeating 7 other rivals.

1791

The Park Hill Stakes, named after St Leger’s house, takes place for the first time. It is for fillies and is run over the St Leger distance.

1826

The noblemen of Doncaster each subscribed 30 guineas for the building of a new stand which was completed this year. In total 60 of them became subscribers including the Dukes of Portland and Devonshire and the Marquesses of Westminster and Queensberry.

1853

A famous day in racings history when West Australian completes a Triple Crown victory, for the first time, by winning the St Leger having previously been victorious in the 2000 Guineas and The Derby.

1855

The 5 furlong Portland Sprint is run for the first time.

1866

The French Gladiateur won the St Leger.

1902

The famous filly, Sceptre, rounds off a record breaking year with a triumph in the St Leger having previously won the 3 classics, the 1000 and 2000 Guineas and The Oaks.

1911

National Hunt racing ceases at Doncaster.

 

 

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1914-18

Racing at Doncaster ceases for the First World War, and the St Leger is transferred to Newmarket.

1939-45

Racing ceases due to the Second World War. However, the St Leger does not transfer directly to Newmarket. In 1940 Thirsk host the Yorkshire St Leger; in 1941 Manchester host The New St Leger, which is then hosted by Newmarket for 1942-44, before York host the St Leger in 1945 prior to it reverting to Doncaster.

1946

Racing resumes at Doncaster, with Airborne winning the St Leger, and jump racing returns to Town Moor when a jumping course is constructed inside the flat race track.

1969

The new Grandstand and covered betting ring was opened this year.

1978

The Lincoln Handicap is run on the 1 mile round course for the olny time in modern history.

1989

Tragedy nearly strikes at Doncaster when a collapsed drain causes mayhem during a race and leads to the St Leger being run at Ayr.

1992

A famous day, not only in Doncaster’s history but also the history of racing, when the first Sunday race meeting takes place at the course on 26th July. See the badge to commemorate the event elsewhere on the website.

2006

Racing ceases in order that a new grandstand and other facilities can be developed.

2007

Racing returns to Town Moor with a preparatory meeting to ensure that all is well before the return of the St Leger.

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