Perth Racecourse History

The earliest evidence of racing in the vicinity of Perth was in 1613, during the reign of James VI of Scotland, when a Silver Bell was contested annually at South Inch, but it was a further one hundred and seventy years before Perth was mentioned again. Amazingly, Bonnie Prince Charlie benefitted from Perth races because his supporters allegedly gathered there prior to the Jacobite uprising. The Perth Hunt Club organised a series of Flat races at North Inch, on a piece of land donated by the 8th Earl of Kinnoull, and in 1791 the Royal Caledonian Hunt Club paid a visit to Perth for the first time. They must have liked what they saw because they introduced the Caledonian Gold Cup in 1818; increased the number of race days at Perth, and organised meetings on a regular basis until 1890, when a final meeting was staged in December. By the early part of the 20th century there was concern that drunken behaviour was spoiling the race meetings and in 1906 a move, led by the Earl of Mansfield, sought to transfer the meetings to a more favourable location. The first two day meeting to take place on the Earl of Mansfield's Scone Palace Park was on Wednesday 23rd and Thursday 24th September 1908, and it has remained Perth’s home ever since. Newspaper comments of the inaugural day’s racing are shown below courtesy of The Scotsman (Thursday 24th September 1908) and the British Library Online. The opening race at the inaugural meeting was the Cramock Handicap Steeplechase, won by Loch Sloy. The most celebrated meeting at the track is the Perth Festival of racing held each April, while the principal race is the historical Perth Gold Cup over 3 miles, usually contested each June, but reinvented by the Provost Mike O’Malley in 1999. Full results of the race since the revival are shown below. Currently hosts 16 fixtures annually.
Wednesday 23rd September 1908
The Cramock Handicap Steeplechase over 2 miles

1. Loch Sloy (5/1), owned by Mr A Coats and ridden by R Cowe
2. Tommy Daw (4/1), owned by Mr J Meleady and ridden by T Lynch
3. General Moon (Evens fav), owned by Mr W Wilson and ridden by J Hamilton

Although Perth remains a thriving racecourse, nearby Stirling closed its gates for the final time in 1854.

The earliest record of racing in Stirling was in 1598, although there then appears to have been a gap for over 60 years, because the next time a meeting was recorded was when races were ‘revived in 1664’, continuing in 1665. Meetings lapsed for 8 years before racing took place for a prolonged period from 1673. James Whyte’s History of the British Turf noted that racing took place at Stirling on King’s Park on a racecourse which was an unusual oblong shape of 11 furlongs and 140 yards. The Stirling Gold Cup was always the principal event at the track and in August 1846 it was won by Lord Eglinton’s Plaudit after a good battle with John Harris. The final meeting took place on Thursday 12th October 1854.

Thursday 27th August 1846
The Stirling Gold Cup over 2 miles
1. Plaudit owned by Lord Eglinton
2. John Harris owned by Mr Merry
3. Inglewood owned by Mr W R Ramsey

I am grateful to Ordnance Survey (© Crown Copyright) for permission to use the 1856 map shown below.
1924 Ladies 1924 Gents 1925 Ladies 1926 Official 1926 Member
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2000 Gents 2001 Ladies 2001 Gents 2002 Ladies 2002 Gents

2000 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Macs Supreme (4/1), trained by Ferdy Murphy and ridden by Adrian Maguire 13 ran
2001 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Water Font (5/1), trained by Jonjo O’Neill and ridden by Richard Johnson 18 ran
2002 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Aegean (14/1), trained by Mrs S Smith and ridden by Warren Marston 11 ran
2003 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Dominikus (15/2), trained by Ferdy Murphy and ridden by Davy Russell 8 ran

2003 Ladies 2003 Gents 2004 Ladies 2004 Gents 2005 Ladies

2004 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Montreal (3/1), trained by Martin Pipe and ridden by Timmy Murphy 9 ran
2005 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Osiris (9/4), trained by Evan Williams and ridden by Christian Williams 6 ran
2006 The Perth Gold Cup was won by King Barry (14/1), trained by Miss P Robson and ridden by Richie McGrath 15 ran
2007 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Tamarinbleu (12/1), trained by David Pipe and ridden by Andrew Glastonbury 16 ran

2005 Gents 2006 Ladies 2006 Gents 2007 Ladies 2007 Gents

2008 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Brooklyn Brownie (22/1), trained by J M Jefferson and ridden by Phil Kinsella 18 ran
2009 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Backstage (3/1), trained by Gordon Elliott and ridden by Jason Maguire 13 ran
2010 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Ollie Magern (14/1), trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies and ridden by Paddy Brennan 12 ran
2011 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Sonny Mullen (4/1), trained by Kim Bailey and ridden by Jason Maguire 9 ran

2008 Gents 2008 Ladies 2009 Gents 2010 Gents 2011 Gents

2012 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Mumbles Head (4/1), trained by Peter Bowen and ridden by T J O’Brien 17 ran
2013 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Problematic (15/2), trained by David Pipe and ridden by Tom Scudamore 13 ran
2014 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Guess Again (4/1), trained by David Pipe and ridden by Tom Scudamore 8 ran
2015 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Kilbree Kid (7/2), trained by Tom George and ridden by Paddy Brennan 8 ran
2016 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Gold Futures (7/2), trained by Nicky Richards and ridden by Brian Harding 5 ran

2012 Gents 2012 Ladies 2013 Gold 2013 Silver 2014 Gents

2017 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Beeves (12/1), trained by Jenny Candlish and ridden by Sean Quinlan 11 ran
2018 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Henllan Harri (6/1), trained by Peter Bowen and ridden by Sean Bowen 11 ran
2019 The Perth Gold Cup was won by Indian Temple (7/1), trained by T Reed and ridden by Harry Reed 10 ran

2015 Ladies 2015 Gents 2016 Ladies 2016 Gents 2017 Gents

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

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