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Earliest meeting: Saturday 19th November 1836
Final meeting: Saturday 19th November 1836
The Hertfordshire town of Hatfield organised its own race meeting on Saturday 19th November 1836 and encouraged some high profile racing personnel to attend. The races were ‘got up by’ Mr Anderson of Piccadilly with the aim of launching the new steeplechase season. Newspapers of the day commented, ‘No purse was given, but that will seldom fail to bring together a field of horses whose owners wish to test the merits and fitness of their horses so early in the season’. The course was located 2 miles outside of the town’s boundary, at the junction of Northaw and Hertford Roads, on land owned by Mr York. It started in Mimm Wood Farm before passing over fields owned by Mr Whitehead, Clark and Williams before finishing at the Greyhound Inn owned by Mr Smith. The feature race, the Hatfield Sweepstake, brought together the well-known jockeys Jem Mason and Captain Becher, with the former, riding Spicey, prevailing. The landlord of the Greyhound Inn at Woodside provided an Ordinary after racing. There are no records of further racing taking place in the town.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 1 & 2 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons Captain Fairley, Captain Willan, Captain Becher
Principal Races Hatfield 25 Sovereign Sweepstake

Saturday 19th November 1836

Hatfield 25 Sovereign Sweepstakes over 4 miles
1. Spicey owned by Captain Fairley and ridden by Jem Mason
2. Redman owned by Captain Willan and ridden by Captain Becher
3. Edwin owned by Mr Anderson and ridden by Mr Rice
4. The Mite owned by Mr Deane and ridden by Mr H Elmore
5. Red Deer owned by Mr Bryan and ridden by Mr Powell
6. Clunbury owned by Mr King and ridden by Mr Seffert

The final meeting took place on Saturday 19th November 1836
Course location: Two miles out of town on the Northaw and Hertford Roads.
If you have photos, postcards, racecards. badges, newspaper cuttings or book references about the old course, or can provide a photo of how the ground on which the old racecourse stood looks today, then email johnwslusar@gmail.com

Much of the information about this course has been found using internet research and is in the public domain. However, useful research sources have been:-

London Illustrated News

Racing Illustrated 1895-1899

The Sporting & Dramatic Illustrated

Northern Turf History Volumes 1-4 by J.Fairfax-Blakeborough

The Sporting Magazine

A Long Time Gone by Chris Pitt first published in 1996 ISBN 0 900599 89 8

Racing Calendars which were first published in 1727

ISBN 978-0-9957632-0-3

652 pages

774 former courses

ISBN 978-0-9957632-1-0

352 pages

400 former courses

ISBN 978-0-9957632-2-7

180 pages

140 former courses

ISBN 978-0-9957632-3-4

264 pages

235 former courses

Copies of the above books are only available by emailing johnwslusar@gmail.com stating your requirements, method of payment (cheque payable to W.Slusar) or Bank transfer, and the address where the book(s) should be sent.
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  Quantity Cost
Volume 1 North of Hatfield £19.99 + £4 postage    
Volume 2 South of Hatfield £14.99 + £3 postage    
Volume 3 Wales & Scotland £9.99 + £3 postage    
Volume 4 Ireland £9.99 + £3 postage    
Volumes 1 - 4 £54.96 + £5 postage    
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