HULL RACECOURSE

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Earliest meeting: Wednesday 10th July 1751
Final meeting: Saturday 11th September 1909
The East Riding of Yorkshire town of Kingston upon Hull, in the Humber estuary, is more commonly known just as Hull and first held races in the middle of the 18th century. Early records show that racing took place on the Anlaby Road course in 1754, and later the Racing Calendar of 1760 recorded a meeting at Hull from the 8th to 10th July 1760. However, the ‘Historical List of Horse-Matches run in 1751’ shows a meeting took place on Wold-Carr, near Hull, in July 1751. The Wold-Carr area of Hull lies close to the KC Stadium and, more importantly, to Anlaby Common, where the racing is likely to have been staged. The three day meeting ran from Wednesday 10th to Friday 12th July 1751, opening with a 4 mile Purse which was won by Tom Jones for Mr Carr. A Purse of Gold followed the next day which went to Mr Simpson’s Blazella at the expense of Hackney and Miss Benson, while on the concluding day the £50 Purse was won by Collier. Three years later the races were moved a short distance to Newington, a hamlet just north of the Anlaby turnpike road. Meetings continued, although Hull races were brought to an abrupt end in 1796 when jockey George Herring was killed after riding Gypsy. He had previously won the St Leger on Hollandaise and was an excellent horseman, but he was thrown from his mare 3 times altogether, the final time proving fatal.  In 1883 the East Riding Club was formed on Twyers’ Estate close to the town of Hedon. The only agenda item at the first Club meeting was the preparation required to launch a flat, hurdle and steeplechase meeting at Hedon, an unusual course at the time because it had a one mile straight.  It took 5 years before their dream was realised in 1888, when the opening card featured the Great East Riding Handicap and the Benninga Cup, which was awarded to the winner of the Hull and East Riding one mile championship. That meeting, the first recorded at the Hedon course under the direction of the East Riding Club, was held on Friday 24th August 1888. The card consisted of 6 races including a seller, the Hedon Plate and the Astley Handicap. In 1901 the races were taken over by the Hull Racecourse Company Limited and they remained in charge until the final meeting on Saturday 11th September 1909.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 1 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons

Duke of Cleveland, Major Jollife, Sir J Pennington, Lord A Hamilton, Lord Bertie, Colonel Radcliffe, Bobby Shafto

Principal Races Hedon Plate, Astley Handicap, Benninga Cup, Great East Riding Handicap, Hull Purse of Gold

Wednesday 10th July 1751

Hull £50 4 mile Purse
1. Tom Jones, grey horse owned by Mr Carr
2. Shrimp, chestnut horse owned by Mr Reed
3. Creeper, grey colt owned by Mr Hall

Thursday 11th July 1751

Hull Purse of Gold over 4 miles
1. Blazella, bay mare owned by Mr Simpson
2. Hackney, bay mare owned by Mr Watson
3. Miss Benson, black mare owned by Mr Early

Friday 12th July 1751

Hull £50 2 mile Purse
1. Collier, chestnut horse owned by Mr Forster
2. Stripling, chestnut horse owned by Mr Parson
3. Driver, grey horse owned by Lord Bertie
4. Toy, black horse owned by Mr Swinburn
5. Victim, chestnut horse owned by Robert Shafto

6th to 10th July 1762

Hull 3 mile Purse
1. Leonides owned by Mr Fenton
2. Northern Jockey owned by Mr Coulson
3. Dart owned by Mr Hunt

Hull Give and Take over 2 miles
1. Dainty Davey owned by the Duke of Cleveland
2. Sprightley owned by Mr Swinburn
3. Newland owned by Major Jollife

Monday 3rd to Friday 7th July 1769

Hull Members Plate over 4 miles
1. Sans Souci owned by Mr Stephenson
2. Enigma owned by Mr Carnforth
3. Fearnought owned by Mr Witham

Hull Purse of Gold over 4 miles
1. Black Legs owned by Mr Frear
2. Cripple owned by Mr Ella
3. Lowland Laddies owned by Mr Hall
4. Tarry Till I Come owned by Mr Milner

Hull Hunters Plate over 4 miles
1. Cymon owned by Mr Gee
2. Cripple owned by Mr Rose

Tuesday 16th to Thursday 18th July 1782

Hull Members Plate over 4 miles
1. Unnamed colt by Alfred owned by Mr Maynard
2. Unnamed horse owned by Mr Sherrington
3. Nancy owned by Mr Eyre

The Great East Riding Handicap was run over a mile and a cup remains today, the Benninga Cup, which was awarded to the winner of the Hull and East Riding one mile championship. I am grateful to Geoff Green for providing the picture shown opposite.

The racecard shown below was issued for the meeting at Wold-Carr on Tuesday 29th, Wednesday 30th June 1790 and 1st July 1790. Results from that meeting are shown below the card.

Tuesday 29th June 1790
Hull 20 Guineas Sweepstake over 2 miles

(5 Subscribers)
1. Microscope, bay colt owned by Mr Crompton walked over

Hull £50 Maiden Plate over 4 mile heats
1. Augustus, brown horse owned by Mr Wilson 1 4 1
2. Unnamed brother to Schoolboy, owned by Mr Hutchinson 4 1 4
3. Grog, bay colt owned by Mr Witty 2 2 3
4. Snip, bay horse owned by Lord Fitzwilliam 3 3 2

Wednesday 30th June 1790
Hull £50 Maiden 4 mile heats

1. Speculator, chestnut horse owned by Mr S Witty 1 1
2. Tulip, bay mare owned by Mr Lowther 2 2

Thursday 1st July 1790
Hull £50 Maiden Plate once round

1. Pencil, bay colt owned by Mr Cradock 1 4 1
2. Hannah’s Frolick, by filly owned by Mr Hutton 4 1 2
3. Smoke-Jack, brown colt owned by Mr Thompson 2 2 4
Orleans, bay colt owned by Mr Witty 3 3 5

Lord Burford’s £50 4 mile heats
1. Tulip, bay mare owned by Mr Lowther 1 1
2. Unnamed brother to Schoolboy, owned by Mr Hutchinson 2 2

The final meeting took place on 11th September 1909

Thought to be an East Riding Club members badge.
Course today

Initially on the Wold-Carr course, then on the Anlaby Road and finally at Hedon. There is little evidence of the previous existence of a racecourse, especially once the grandstand was sold in 1924, and the land used as an aerodrome.

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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