Badges through the decades

Brief History


Racing is know to have taken place at York, just outside Micklegate Bar.


Earliest evidence of racing taking place near York at the Clifton Ings course in the Forest of Galtres. A silver bell was the prize for Oswald Wyllesthorpe in defeating William Mallory.


Racing, by now, is taking place at Acomb Moor, and Charles I attended with his acquaintance Sir Henry Slingsby.


Queen anne wins a race at York with Star.


Racing takes place on the Knavesmire for the first time on 11th August and lasts for 6 days.


The success of Smallhopes in the King's Plate was overshadowed by the hanging of Dick Turpin on 20th August.


The grandstand is opened at the Summer meeting. It was the brainchild of Lord Rockingham, who organised the sale of 250 5 shares which entitled holders to a free entry badge for the next 100 years.


The famous Gimcrack Club is founded, named after the grey who won 26 races but never managed a victory at York.


The great Eclipse wins 2 races at York.


Royal visitors to York when The Prince of Wales and The Duke of York attend. A race is named after the latter.


The Great Yorkshire Stakes is run for the first time.


York suffers a decline in popularity when only 8 horses are entered for the meeting on 16th May. The decline started when public hangings were no longer part of the racing programme.


The Ebor, then known as The Great Ebor, was run for the first time and was won by Pagan.


The Gimcrack Stakes is run for the first time, but it is over 100 years later before the winning owner is invited to make a speech at the Gimcrack dinner. The first winner was Ellerdale, ridden by Tommy Lye and trained by Tom Dawson.


Probably the most famous match of all time took place on 13th May, witnessed by a crowd in excess of 100,000. Voltigeur had won the Derby and St Leger in 1850. The Flying Dutchman had won the Derby and St Leger in 1849. The two had met in the Doncaster Cup and Voltigeur had prevailed. Voltigeur carried 8st, while The Flying Dutchman carried 8st 8 1/2 lbs and it was sweet revenge for The Flying Dutchman, winning by a length.


Blink Bonny wins the Gimcrack before sge goes on to gain the Oaks and Derby one year later.


A famous, and important time in York and racings history, with the Clerk of the Course being threatened with a fine for every minute a race goes off late.


Earliest evidence of jump racing taking place on the Knavesmire in April.


The Gimcrack Stakes becomes a 6 furlong race.


James Melrose becomes Chairman of the Tork Race Committee and the Melrose Stakes marks the contribution he made to the development of York as a centre of racing excellence.


The last recorded evidence of National Hunt racing taking place at York.


Gordon Richards rides his first Ebor winner on Chapeau.


Bahram wins the Gimcrack and goes on to gain the Triple Crown a year later.


Racing ceases and York is used as a prisoner of war camp.




York_1946.JPG (11640 bytes)  


Racing resumes on 4th September and Chamossaire wins the substitute St Leger on 5th September, Dante having been scratched.


The Great Voltigeur is run for the first time, commemorating the great horse, although it never won a race at York.


The new stands, designed by the same architect who designed Newbury grandstand, are opened by Lord Halifax.


Queen Elizabeth II graces York with her presence on 15th August and witnesses the defeat of Brigadier Gerard by Roberto.


Sea Pigeon, much loved by the Yorkshire crown, wins the Ebor in the hands of Jonjo O'Neill, prevailing by only a short head from Donegal Prince.


Judmonte take over the sponsorship of the International.

York 1952b.JPG (13175 bytes)
York_1968.JPG (14769 bytes)
York_1990L.JPG (10900 bytes)
York_2000.JPG (12554 bytes)