Uttoxeter Racecourse History

The earliest evidence of racing in the Uttoxeter area was at Netherwood in the early years of the 18th century. In the early 1800’s Uttoxeter combined with the nearby Meynell Hunt Group to stage steeplechase meetings, one of which took place on Thursday 6th April 1820 with results shown below. However, meetings on the current course were designed to replace those at nearby Keele Park which had closed by 1907. A company was formed in 1907 to take over the licence of Keele Park racecourse, with 100 members of the nobility and gentry of the county forming the club to run the racecourse. The inaugural 2 day meeting took place on Friday 3rd and Saturday 4th May 1907, with results shown below. There were 3 further days of racing in 1907. Racing ceased in 1914 because of the outbreak of War, and did not return until two years after the War had ended. The first meeting was abandoned due to inclement weather, but a meeting was held in April 1921 and 3 further meetings took place that year. No racing took place between 1939 and 1945, initially because the course was requisitioned by the War Department and then because the farmer, whose land the course was on, could not agree appropriate terms for racing to take place. It was not until 1951 that Uttoxeter Urban District Council took over the running of the course, holding an inaugural meeting on 12th April 1952 when a crowd in excess of 12,000 attended. In 1968 a new grandstand was opened at a cost of £167,000 and twenty years later the course was bought by Northern Racing, led by Sir Stanley Clarke. He instigated the building of a new paddock and two new grandstands, transforming the course from a lowly, rural track into one which became known nationwide. The feature race is the Midlands Grand National which was first run in 1969, but in 1997 Sir Stanley Clarke had his sights set on the Aintree Grand National which he won with Lord Gyllene. Currently the course stages 19 fixtures annually.

Uttoxeter 1912.JPG (28101 bytes)
Thursday 6th April 1820
Meynell Hunt Sweepstake over 2 miles

1. Sailor, bay gelding owned by Captain Henry Meynell
2. Legacy, brown gelding owned by Mr W Trevanion
3. Collier, brown gelding owned by Mr Stubbs Wightwick

The Silver Cup over 2 miles
1. Sir Henry, grey gelding owned by Mr Bagguley
2. Glaucus, chestnut gelding owned by Mr Thomas Briggs
3. Hebe, brown mare owned by Mr Bailey

Uttoxeter 1914.JPG (27436 bytes)

Uttoxeter 1928.JPG (34651 bytes)
Uttoxeter 1952.JPG (19151 bytes)
Uttoxeter continues to thrive today, whereas nearby Derby closed its gates for the final time in 1939.

Although racing is mentioned taking place in the Derbyshire county city of Derby in a publication in 1639, the earliest evidence of racing on Sinfin Moor was 1707, although it was not until 1748 that Sinfin Moor became firmly established as Derby’s racecourse. The first results listed in the ‘Historical List of Races’ were from a three day meeting in Derby which took place from Tuesday 3rd to Thursday 5th October 1752 when the Give and Take Selling Race was won by Oh My Eye owned by Miss Sherley, with the winner to be sold for 20 Guineas. The Sporting Magazine reported on a meeting on Tuesday 5th August 1760 which was held on nearby Sinfin Moor, where racing continued until transferring to Siddals in time for the 1831 meeting, remaining there for 4 years before moving to its final loaction. The National Hunt Chase Challenge Cup, now contested at the annual Cheltenham Festival in March, was held at Derby on 5 occasions, the last in 1892 when the Lord Royston owned Royal Buck was ridden to victory by Mr Yorke. Racing ceased during the First World War but resumed shortly afterwards. The final two day National Hunt meeting was held on Monday 20th and Tuesday 21st February 1939, while a 3 day Flat meeting was staged from Monday 7th to Wednesday 9th August 1939. The course closed during the War and the owners, Derby Recreation Company, were refused permission by the Council to hold any further meetings in 1942.

Tuesday 3rd October 1752
Derby 4 year old Stakes over 2 miles
1. Mettle, grey horse owned by Mr Hunt
2. Snip, bay horse owned by Mr Shield
3. Northern Nancy, grey mare owned by Mr Howe

I am grateful to Ordnance Survey (© Crown Copyright) for permission to use the 1856 map shown below.
Uttoxeter 1964.JPG (17624 bytes)
1967 Gents 1968 Gents 1969 Ladies 1969 Gents 1970 Gents
The newspaper extract given below is shown courtesy of the Sporting Life (Saturday 4th May 1907) and the British Newspaper Online. It reports on the inaugural meeting held at Uttoxeter on Friday 3rd May 1907.
1973 Gents 1974 Gents 1974 Ladies 1975 Gents 1976 Gents

The rare handbill shown below is provided courtesy of the Robert Shaw collection.

The principal race is the Midland Grand National over 4 miles 1 furlong and 92 yards. It consists of 24 fences and was first contested on 3rd May 1969 when Happy Spring, trained by J Wright and ridden by Ken White, was successful. Full details of all winners are given below.
1969 The Midland Grand National was won by Happy Spring, trained by J Wright and ridden by Ken White
1970 The Midland Grand National was won by Two Springs, trained by G Owen and ridden by R Edwards
1971 The Midland Grand National was won by Grey Sombrero, trained by David Gandolfo and ridden by Graham Thorner
1972 The Midland Grand National was won by Proud Percy, trained by W A Stephenson and ridden by G Faulkner

1987 Member 1988 Member 1989 Member 1990 Ladies 1991 Gents

1973 The Midland Grand National was won by Rip’s Lyric, trained by W Whiston and ridden by Ken White
1974 The Midland Grand National was won by Fighting Chance, trained by Gay Kindersley and ridden by Bill Shoemark
1975 The Midland Grand National was won by Rag Trade, trained by Arthur Pitt and ridden by John Burke
1976 The Midland Grand National was won by Burrator, trained by A Jarvis and ridden by Mr J Decker
1977 The Midland Grand National was won by Watifella, trained by Jenny Pitman and ridden by Bryan Smart

Uttoxeter 1992.JPG (18338 bytes)
1991 Ladies 1992 Gents 1992 Ladies 1993 Gents 1993 Member

1978 The Midland Grand National was won by Kick On, trained by K Lewis and ridden by R Hyett
1979 The Midland Grand National was won by Jimmy Miff, trained by I Wardle and ridden by S Kemble
1980 The Midland Grand National was won by Pacify, trained by Stan Mellor and ridden by Steve Jobar
1981 The Midland Grand National was won by Master Brutus, trained by Caroline Mason and ridden by John Goulding
1982 The Midland Grand National was won by Bridge Ash, trained by J Johnson and ridden by Keith Johnson

1994 Gents 1995 Gents 1995 Member 1995 Ladies 1996 Gents Member

1983 The Midland Grand National was not contested
1984 The Midland Grand National was won by Mr Mole, trained by John Webber and ridden by A Webb
1985 The Midland Grand National was won by Northern Bay, trained by Tom Bill and ridden by Philip Hobbs
1986 The Midland Grand National was won by The Thinker, trained by Arthur Stephenson and ridden by Ridley Lamb
1987 The Midland Grand National was won by Midnight Madness, trained by Dai Bloomfield and ridden by Derek Morris

1996 Lady Member 1996 Gents 1996 Ladies 1997 Gents 1998 Ladies

1988 The Midland Grand National was won by Knock Hill, trained by John Webber and ridden by George Mernagh
1989 The Midland Grand National was won by Gallic Prince, trained by Philip Hobbs and ridden by Peter Hobbs
1990 The Midland Grand National was won by Willsford, trained by Jenny Pitman and ridden by Mark Pitman
1991 The Midland Grand National was won by Bonanza Boy, trained by Martin Pipe and ridden by Peter Scudamore
1992 The Midland Grand National was won by Laura’s Beau, trained by Francis Berry and ridden by Conor O’Dwyer

1998 Gents 1999 Member 1999 Ladies 2000 Member 2001 Ladies

1993 The Midland Grand National was won by Mister Ed, trained by Roger Curtis and ridden by Derek Morris
1994 The Midland Grand National was won by Glenbrook d’Or, trained by Jim Wilson and ridden by Brian Clifford
1995 The Midland Grand National was won by Lucky Lane, trained by Philip Hobbs and ridden by Norman Williamson
1996 The Midland Grand National was won by Another Excuse, trained by Eugene O’Sullivan and ridden by Brendan Powell snr
1997 The Midland Grand National was won by Seven Towers, trained by Mary Reveley and ridden by Peter Niven

2001 Gents 2002 Ladies 2002 Gents 2003 Gents 2004 Gents

1998 The Midland Grand National was won by Miss Orchestra, trained by Jessica Harrington and ridden by Barry Geraghty
1999 The Midland Grand National was won by Young Kenny, trained by Peter Beaumont and ridden by Brendan Powell snr
2000 The Midland Grand National was won by Ackzo, trained by Ferdy Murphy and ridden by Adrian Maguire
2001 The Midland Grand National was not contested
2002 The Midland Grand National was won by The Bunny Boiler, trained by Noel Meade and ridden by Norman Williamson

2004 Ladies 2005 Gents 2005 Ladies 2005 Medical Officer 2006 Ladies

2003 The Midland Grand National was won by Intelligent, trained by Jessica Harrington and ridden by Robbie Power
2004 The Midland Grand National was not contested
2005 The Midland Grand National was won by Philson’s Run, trained by Nick Williams and ridden by Paul Carberry
2006 The Midland Grand National was won by G V A Ireland, trained by Francis Flood and ridden by Ruby Walsh
2007 The Midland Grand National was won by Baron Windrush, trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies and ridden by Jason Maguire

2006 Gents 2007 Gents 2007 Ladies 2008 Gents 2008 Doctor

2008 The Midland Grand National was won by Himalayan Trail, trained by Sue Smith and ridden by Tjade Collier
2009 The Midland Grand National was won by Russian Trigger, trained by Victor Dartnall and ridden by Jack Doyle
2010 The Midland Grand National was won by Synchronised, trained by Jonjo O’Neill and ridden by Tony McCoy
2011 The Midland Grand National was won by Minella Four Stars, trained by David Pipe and ridden by Conor O’Farrell
2012 The Midland Grand National was won by Master Overseer, trained by David Pipe and ridden by Tom Scudamore

2011 Member 2012 Member 2013 Member 2014 Member 2015 Member

2013 The Midland Grand National was won by Big Occasion, trained by David Pipe and ridden by Mr Mikey Ennis
2014 The Midland Grand National was won by Goulanes, trained by David Pipe and ridden by Richard Johnson
2015 The Midland Grand National was won by Goonyella, trained by Jim Dreaper and ridden by Johnny Burke
2016 The Midland Grand National was won by Firebird Flyer, trained by Evan Williams and ridden by Adam Wedge
2017 The Midland Grand National was won by Chase The Spud, trained by Fergal O’Brien and ridden by Paddy Brennan

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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