What's the itinerary for our trip to Germany's biggest race meeting?
Flying into Stuttgart on Thursday evening, we'll transport you to Hotel Der Kleine Prinz, your luxury accommodation in Baden-Baden city centre. Order room service that night, book a table in the in-house restaurant, or head out among the cobbled streets of Baden-Württemberg's quintessential spa town. There's breakfast included every morning, and before lunch on Friday, a local guide will be joining us to give you a walking tour of the city centre.
We'll then jump aboard a bus, taking us twenty minutes or so to the village of Iffezheim, where Baden Racecourse is located. There's no racing today, but you'll have the chance to attend Germany's premier yearling sale at the BBAG auction house, before walking a few metres to the training yard of Gerard Geisler, who's recorded success in four countries and counting.
On Saturday morning, before lunch in Baden Racecourse's panoramic Champions Club hospitality suite, you'll be shown round the track by a racecourse employee. Get your German racing questions answered, and see behind-the-scenes a day before some of the biggest names of our sport fly in... this includes the weighing room and pre-parade. That evening, we'll invite you to join us (the trip is fully chaperoned) at Baden-Baden's historic casino, which has been welcoming high society since the rule of Napoleon Bonaparte.
Sunday is the big day, and we'll take you out to the course, allowing you settle in to the Champions Club once more, where food and drink is served, and where you can step out onto a balcony (the suite is on the top floor of the grandstand) to take in the Group One contest. The Grosser Preis von Baden has seen the likes of Godolphin and the Aga Khan enter runners, and we'll invite you into the paddock a few races before the feature. When the afternoon concludes, it's back to a final night in the comfort of Der Kleine Prinz, before we take you through southern Germany on Monday morning to catch a flight home from Stuttgart to Heathrow.
An short introduction to Baden Racecourse
Inaugurated in 1858, along with the Grosser Preis itself, Baden Racecourse hosts three meetings a year: a Spring Festival in May, the five day (with breaks) Grosse Woche in September, and a Sales & Racing Festival in October. Quaint, informal, and stubbornly down-to-earth, its old-fashioned stands are always packed to the rafters. Baden Racecourse used to offer breakfast as horses exercised on track, and food is still the beating heart of this haven, worn down by years of enjoyment.
With the BBAG sales house (Germany's only bloodstock auctioneers) just metres away, and with the presence of eight trainers in a stone's throw, this is a sturdy outpost of German racing's proud and productive, ever thriving living heritage.