Market Rasen Racecourse gears up for Lincolnshire National

The Boxing Day meet at Market Rasen Races is popular with families EMN-191212-171904002
The Boxing Day meet at Market Rasen Races is popular with families EMN-191212-171904002

Market Rasen Racecourse is gearing itself up for one of their biggest jump racing occasions of the year - the Rand Farm Park Boxing Day At The Races.

The traditional festive meet has been running since 1946, and draws thousands of spectators every year.

Connections of Brigg-trained Gonalston Cloud celebrate after his win in the Clugston Lincolnshire National in 2016. Picture: Peter Thompson EMN-191212-172010002

Connections of Brigg-trained Gonalston Cloud celebrate after his win in the Clugston Lincolnshire National in 2016. Picture: Peter Thompson EMN-191212-172010002

The racing highlight of a packed programme of jump racing on Boxing Day is invariably the £20,000 Clugston Lincolnshire National, the longest race in the racecourse’s calendar at three-and-three-quarter miles.

There have been two Lincolnshire-trained winners in the last seven years in Soudain and Gonalston Cloud, while race-goers with longer memories will recall Victory Gunner’s hat-trick of victories between 2005 and 2007.

Every year the Clugston Lincolnshire National produces a headline.

In 2015, James Banks booted West Of The Edge to victory to complete a double on the day for him and trainer Dai Williams who had made the long journey from west Wales.

Twelve months later, five horses had a chance at the last fence before Gonalston Cloud, from the Nick Kent stables, in Brigg, and ridden by Adam Wedge, pulled out a bit more to take the prize ahead of Amiral Collonges.

In 2017, Amiral Collonges was an unlucky runner-up again, having to give second best to 7-1 chance Cyclop, and last year, Bridget Andrews rode the Dan Skelton-trained Ange Des Malberaux to victory.

There is a festive deal for punters this year, the ‘Christmas Clan Offer’ which aims to encourage families to book early and come in big numbers.

Families or friends who buy four tickets in advance able to save £5 on additional purchases for the County and Tattersalls Enclosures.

Nadia Powell, general manager of Market Rasen Racecourse, said: “Boxing Day horse racing at Market Rasen Racecourse is as much a part of Christmas as turkey, mulled wine and crackers.

“Visitors who buy their tickets before Boxing Day get the best prices, so purchasing in advance is a great idea.

“I would also recommend people to set off in plenty of time to get to the racecourse on Boxing Day.

“The racecourse is clearly signed, with a number of routes in place and we urge all visitors to follow them and to get here early.”

Gates open at 10.10am, ahead of the first race, scheduled for 12.10pm, with the finale at 3.30pm, and the all-important Lincolnshire National scheduled for a 2.20pm start.

Adult tickets cost from £11.70 in advance (£13 on the day) for the Lawn Enclosure, while Tattersalls advance admission is £19.80 (£22 on the day) and County is £24.30 (£27 on the day).

There is free entry for accompanied under 18s.

For further details about Market Rasen Racecourse, including ticket purchases, visit www.thejockeyclub.co.uk/marketrasen