Issued on behalf of Arena Racing Company
Today (Friday 22 January 2016) Arena Racing Company (ARC) is delighted to announce it will be re-opening Hereford Racecourse in October 2016.
The Welsh Borders track will resume hosting jump racing on Thursday 6 October 2016, having held point-to-points and Arabian horseracing in recent years. The racecourse will host a minimum of four fixtures in 2016 on the following dates:
- Thursday 6 October (transferred from Worcester Racecourse)
- Monday 31 October (transferred from Southwell Racecourse)
- Wednesday 23 November (transferred from Fontwell Park Racecourse)
- Monday 19 December (transferred from Lingfield Park Racecourse)
For 2017, Hereford Racecourse will be part of the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) fixture process. We propose that Hereford Racecourse will hold racing within the core jumps season between October and April and host around a dozen fixtures a year, but this is still to be determined. Further information about the first fixture and purchasing tickets will be available at www.hereford-racecourse.co.uk in due course.
ARC is currently in the process of recruiting a person to manage Hereford Racecourse and will also utilise the resource and extensive experience of existing team members within the company.
ARC is very pleased to have been able to work closely with Herefordshire Council and the BHA to ensure the racecourse can re-open. ARC has committed to make sufficient investment to re-open the current facilities and will work with the council on a long term lease and future investment programme to ensure the racecourse has a viable future for many years.
Martin Cruddace, ARC chief executive, said: “We are delighted to be re-opening Hereford Racecourse, which has long been popular with racing fans. We hope this will be seen as a positive development for both the local community and British racing as a whole.
“Today’s announcement confirms our long term commitment to grassroots jump racing in Great Britain. I would like to thank Herefordshire Council and the BHA for their ongoing assistance and we are grateful for the help and support we continue to receive from both organisations. We look forward to welcoming owners, trainers, jockeys, stable staff and racing fans back to Hereford Racecourse in October to enjoy jump racing.”
Councillor Harry Bramer, Herefordshire Council Cabinet member for contracts and assets, said: “The council is delighted to see the re-opening of Hereford Racecourse. It is a central part of the local community and will have a beneficial effect on the local area. In recent months we have positively engaged with ARC and welcome the investment it is making to bring racing back to the city. We look forward to continuing our successful relationship with ARC for the benefit of the county.”
Nick Rust, BHA chief executive, said: “Given the challenges facing jump racing, as highlighted in our recent review, the BHA believes the re-opening of Hereford Racecourse is an encouraging step and we welcome the news. The course will provide a greater spread of opportunities for horses and another venue for racing fans to enjoy the sport throughout the winter months. The racecourse had always retained its licence and as such the BHA has facilitated the transfer of a small number of fixtures from other ARC racecourses to Hereford Racecourse for 2016. For 2017, the racecourse will take part in the 2017 fixture process in the same manner as the other 59 courses.”
Philip Freedman, chairman of the Horsemen’s Group, said: “Horsemen will be delighted to see ARC re-opening Hereford Racecourse. It has always been a popular track and horsemen will no doubt show their support once racing recommences in October. Jump racing need tracks such as this and it is a positive sign for its future that we can once again look forward to years of sporting action at Hereford Racecourse.”