Flat Cap & Whippet Family Day
Friday Night Music Night SeriesFeatured Event
Tribute Bands Family Day
Pontefract Ladies DayFeatured Event
Fantastic racing and fantastic outfits bring style and a dash of colour to a great day out at one of Yorkshire's premier racecourses.
Where to be for the best views
A Premier Enclosure Badge gives access to each of the areas listed below:
- Covered seating
- The Parade Ring/Pre-Parade Ring
- Champagne Bar
- Lounge Bar
- Premier Dining Room
- Park Suite
- Premier Sports Cafe Bar
- Annual Badge Facilities
- Owners & Trainers Facilities
- With a Premier Enclosure Badge, you also have access to all other Enclosures.
Grandstand and Paddock Enclosure
A little further away from the Winning Post but still with excellent viewing, you'll also have access to:
- Terraced viewing stands
- The Parade Ring/Pre-parade Ring
- Furlong Bar
- Paddock Bar
- Balcony Bar
- Self Service Dining Room
- Riders' Bar
- The Grandstand & Paddock ticket also gives you access to the Silver & Picnic Enclosures.
The next Enclosure down, approximately 100 yards from the Winning Post offers:
- Silver Lounge Bar
- Tea Bar & Servery
- Fast Food Units
The most cost effective Enclosure is the Picnic Enclosure!
With a large expanse of grass, this area is normally packed out on Sunday race meetings with families enjoying a picnic, children's rides, bouncy castles and the like!
It's open on every day and is especially popular with racegoers who like to bring their car in to the Course and park up next to the rails! There's a tea bar and fast food units in this area!
How to find us
Pontefract Racecourse is brilliantly situated just half a mile from Junction 32 of the M62. Links with the A1, M1 and M18 are all within 10 miles of the Racecourse. Leaving J32 of the M62 (the Xscape junction), follow the signs for the Racecourse towards Pontefract town centre. The Racecourse is situated on the right hand side in Pontefract Park. For those of you who like to follow Sat Nav directions, our postcode is WF8 4QD.
There are 3 stations in Pontefract - Monkhill, Baghill and Tanshelf.
There is a fourth station at Glasshoughton which is by the Xscape complex which is a couple of miles from the Racecourse.
Pontefract Tanshelf is more or less opposite the entrance to the Park, whereas Monkhill and Baghill are fairly centrally located in Pontefract and would be 2 to 3 miles from the course.
There is a bus stop just outside Pontefract Park.
To check on bus timetables, please contact Metroline on 0113 245 7676.
Leave M62 at jct 32 Racecourse is 0.5 miles from jct 32.
We would recommend the following local taxi companies should you require a taxi to the Racecourse:
Data Cars (01977) 600680 Action Cars (01977) 703333 Slatters Taxis (01977) 705674 Ponty Cars (01977) 609999
All car parking is free of charge and is in the Park itself.
Parking is available in the Picnic Enclosure at a cost of £15 per car with a maximum of 4 adult occupants. This price includes a racecard and your entry in to the Picnic Enclosure.
What to wear
Dress Code in the Premier Enclosure only – smart casual, no scruffy jeans, shorts or tshirts
Racing is recorded as having taken place in Pontefract as early as 1648, just before the local Castle was taken by the forces of Oliver Cromwell. Races were held in the meadows near the town but these were discontinued by 1769. The townsfolk restarted the sport in 1801 and it has continued ever since. In 1827 the races were held in September and reported as being very fashionably attended. While it cannot "claim to be one of Yorkshire's major courses” it was used for some major races during World War II when other courses were out of action. Pontefract installed a photo finish in 1952 and was also the first English course to have a dope testing facility. The course traditionally began its afternoon race meetings at 2.45 pm - later than most other courses - so that miners at the adjacent colliery could finish the morning shift in time to go racing. This remained the case until the colliery closed in 2002. Today the racecourse is left-handed undulating course with a sharp bend into the home straight. Horses drawn low usually have the advantage. The final 3 furlongs of the track are uphill, making it quite testing. The course was originally a horseshoe of 1 1/2 miles, but in 1983, it was converted into a full circuit of about 2 miles. This made it one of the longest continuous flat racing circuits in Europe and allowed it to stage one of the longest races in the calendar at 2 miles 5 furlongs 133 yards.