Aintree Racecourse Guide

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Welcome to our official guide to Aintree Racecourse.

We explore this brilliant racecourse in detail, looking at its rich history, The Grand National three-day festival, a guide to the racecourse and the famous fence (including Becher’s Brook), local recommended hotel picks, travel information and betting guides.

If you are looking for the latest betting tips for Aintree, check out our full guide to Aintree Racecourse tips.

Find out more about Aintree races today:

Aintree Racecourse

Aintree Racecourse Overview

Famous as “The home of the Grand National” and the stomping ground of one of the most famous racehorses of all time – Red Rum –  Aintree is one of the most iconic racecourses anywhere in the world, with its splendour and reputation reigning far past its North-West postcode and gaining it fame on a global scale.

Situated in Merseyside it attracts visitors from all over the country to its race meetings but it always stays true to its roots: with more locals visiting the course than anyone else.

It is a racecourse that a great city is rightly proud of.

It is part of The Jockey Club’s elite portfolio of fourteen British racecourses, and whilst known for its enormous sense of fun and occasion, it is also considered amongst the greenest and most sustainable of British race tracks.

Its natural picturesque countryside environment allows the Jockey Club to invest in environmental initiatives and trial various sustainability projects before they’re rolled out across other racecourses. However, Aintree will always be known for the Grand National, Red Rum, and perhaps the unusual and daring outfit choices for Ladies’ Day.

Aintree racecourse capacity stands at 75,000.

Aintree is a household name and is truly one of the top attractions in Merseyside. It’s a racecourse at the heart of a city and a racecourse that the world has fallen in love with.

Aintree Racecourse History

Aintree races started life back in 1829, when local hotelier William Lynn had the idea of bringing racing to the area – with the benefit of course, of attracting new clientele to his hotel at the same time.

He entered into talks with local landowner William Molyneux and a grandstand was constructed in July 1829 for a race. The course flourished and within the space of just a few years had attracted upward of 40,000 race-goers!

By 1835, the racecourse was adapted to include jump racing as well as flat, and in 1836 the first-ever ‘Grand Liverpool Steeplechase’ took place. Whilst not listed formally in the history books, this is believed to be the first Grand National event.

In 1839, the reputation of the Grand National preceded itself, and with nearby Liverpool gaining a railway, spectators arrived in their droves. This formed the first recorded Grand National race and the rest, as they say, is history.

Aintree racecourse remains upgraded and refurbished by the Jockey Club but largely unchanged today, although spectator capacity now sits at 75,000, and there are considerably more amenities and facilities for those visiting and racing than there were in the 1800s!

The Grand National Meeting

The undisputed main event at Aintree Festival is the Grand National.

One of the most famous races in the world, the Grand National takes place annually, usually in April. It forms part of a three-day festival – known as the Grand National Meeting.

Other big races during the Grand National festival and Aintree’s races include:

  • The Aintree Hurdle – a Grade One hurdle ran over 2 miles and 4 furlongs on the Mildmay course, it is one of the premium hurdle races in the UK and Ireland with eleven flights of hurdles to be jumped. Won by greats such as Istabraq and Annie Power in recent years.
  • The Melling Chase – another grade one over 2 miles and 4 furlongs over the Mildmay course, this is one of the most prestigious races in the chasing calendar. Won by some great horses, such as the brilliant and tough Viking Flagship, Altoir and Moscow Flyer.
  • The Fox Hunters Chase – ran over the Grand National course, but over a shorter distance of 2mile 5 furlongs, it is open to amateur riders.

Other main races at the Grand National Meeting:

The Grand National Race

The Grand National is considered the most famous race and most difficult course in the world to complete and includes 16 steeplechase fences to jump, many of which are now household names, such as the Chair, Foinavon, Canal Turn, Valentine’s and Becher’s Brook.

All fences other than the water jump are covered in spruce, which is unique to this course.

It’s run across approximately 4 miles and 2½ furlongs. The race is a staple in the British sports calendar and is broadcast live on free-to-air television annually, as well as around the globe, with an estimated viewership of up to 500,000,000.

Watch the great Grand National Course flyover video highlighting how many fences are there in the Grand National and the Grand National track map.

The prize fund for winning the Grand National has exceeded £1,000,000 and continues to grow.

Tickets for the world-famous Grand National are exceedingly hard to get hold of, but the whole of Aintree and the city hosts events over the three days, so those visiting will never be short of something to do; even if they don’t quite make it to the big race itself.

Aintree Racecourse Tickets

Aintree racecourse tickets are always very popular for all of their meetings. You’ll find great offers, deals and early birds to all of their events throughout the year and we always recommend booking in advance so you get to enjoy the day out and can plan ahead.

As racing at Aintree is so popular the events sell out, so it is best to book early and in advance to avoid disappointment.

If you are looking for the best deals on Aintree Racecourse Tickets follow the official link here.

If you plan on attending the amazing Grand National Festival we show you the best tips for purchasing the Grand National Tickets online.

Grand National day is obviously the biggest day of the year.

Aintree Racecourse Map

Please find the Aintree racecourse map course, including the Grand National racecourse map, below:

Aintree Racecourse Map

The track is made up of two left-handed courses both used for National Hunt racing.

The conventional course is named the Mildmay Course. It is a flat, sharp track which is 1mile 3furlongs per lap – this is where all the hurdles and standard chase races are run.

The Grand National course is a much bigger circuit, which is 2miles and 2 furlongs in distance, with a variety of fences and ditches to negotiate. The most famous fences are known the world over, such as the Canal Turn, Beecher’s Brook and The Chair.

Whilst the most important race ran over the course is The Grand National, there are actually other races contested over the track including the Grand Sefton and The Foxhunters.

Aintree Races 2024

Here is the list fixture racing calendar for Aintree Races in 2024:


Check out our guide for the full list of UK horse racing fixtures in 2024.

Other Main Races at Aintree

Aside from the Grand National Meeting, other main races at Aintree are:

Aintree Racecourse Address

The official address is:

Aintree Racecourse
Ormskirk Road
L9 5AS
Phone: 0151 523 2600

How To Get To Aintree Racecourse

Travelling to Aintree races is normally carried out as below:

  • By Rail – served by its own railway station directly opposite the racecourse with trains arriving from Liverpool Lime Street every 15-mins on race days (and even more frequently during the Grand National!). Aintree train station to Aintree racecourse is a short walk.
  • By Bus – buses travel from the city centre regularly and National Express schedule coaches to Aintree from a variety of destinations on event days.
  • By Car – car parking usually needs to be booked in advance, and the racecourse is a short drive from Liverpool city centre. The postcode for the stat nav is L9 5AS.
  • By Air – those travelling from further afield can fly into Liverpool John Lennon Airport, just a 20-min car ride away.

As you can see getting to Aintree is easy and there are lots of options.

Hotels Near Aintree Racecourse

The popularity of events at the racecourse means that the hotels near Aintree rely almost entirely on the trade from the venue, and some are only open seasonally. There is something for all budgets and tastes, check out some of our favourite Aintree hotels below:

  • The Premier Inn Liverpool North Hotel – the cheapest option with rooms available from £30 when booked in advance and remain at the quality you’d expect from such a big brand. If your trip is already an unusually large expenditure, this is a great choice.
  • The Titanic Hotel – known as one of the best luxury hotels with superb rooms, leisure facilities & quality dining.
  • Cavern Quarter Ibis Styles Hotel – another good option, great as part of a weekend trip to the city.

Aintree Betting Guide

While attending Aintree does not necessarily mean you need to place a bet, for many racegoers it is the experience that matters whether it is your first time or you have visited lots of times before, Aintree races is always a superb day out. 

There are lots of different betting options for you when visiting Aintree, here are the options:

Online Betting

With 3G, 4G and on course Wifi, online betting sites or betting via mobile app is a popular choice.

If you fancy a flutter on the 2024 Grand National Runners you should make the most of the biggest grand national betting offers in May 2024 and the latest 2024 Grand National Odds available on your horses.

Many new to gambling online find our how to bet on the Grand National online a helpful article and are helped with the horses selected by reading our Best Grand National Tips guide from the leading horse racing tipsters voted recently in May 2024.

Local Betting Shops to Aintree

Here are the local bookmakers close to Aintree:

  • William Hill – 192, 4 Longmoor Ln, Liverpool, L9 0EL
  • William Hill – 140 – 142 Ormskirk Rd, Aintree, Liverpool L10 3JQ
  • Betfred – 732 Longmoor Ln, Liverpool L10 7LN
  • William Hill – 105 Park Ln, Netherton, Bootle L30 1QB

Aintree On-Course Bookmakers

The on-course bookmakers can generally be found at the front of the grandstand or even on the rails.

These on-course bookies at Aintree are the life and soul of the betting experience, the best odds on each race are worth searching around for and you can walk from bookie to bookie to find the best betting odds around.

Aintree On Course Bookies

Best Aintree Races Betting Sites

At British Racecourses we often recommend betting online and via apps when going to the races. This is because you can often get the best odds, great offers when signing up and you can place bets quickly and safely.

If you are looking to bet online we recommend the following great deals for online betting below: 

Aintree Racecard and Aintree Tips

The racecards for the Aintree races are released the day before the races take places, find out where to view racecards here – tomorrow’s racecards and today’s racecards. In these you will get an advance look at all the runners and riders, some people like to do this and select their horses before getting to the track.

You can also of course purchase a racecard from the track which carries much of the same useful information.

Aintree Racecourse Events

Whilst undoubtedly most famous for being the home of the Grand National, this venue ran by the brilliant Jockey Club also hosts other events too.

The course also has a range of conferencing and hospitality facilities.

Previously, it has also hosted golf events, motor racing and a variety of music concerts – including the likes of:

  • Michael Jackson
  • P!nk
  • Kaiser Chiefs
  • Chemical Brothers!

As you can see Aintree racecourse events are varied and exciting.

What’s on at the Aintree Racecourse?

Many search for “what’s on at Aintree racecourse” because there are always some events held on the racecourse itself.

If you are looking for live music at Aintree you might want to check out –

If you are wondering what’s on in Aintree racecourse with regards to horse racing you might want to check out the full Aintree racecard fixtures.

Aintree Races Facts

  • Aintree Racecourse is a horse racing venue located in Aintree, Liverpool, England.
  • The course is home to the world-famous Grand National steeplechase.
  • First established in 1829 with its first meeting, the course is also host to the Aintree Hurdle and the Fox Hunters’ Chase.
  • Aintree has a capacity of around 70,000 and is a course quite like no other.
  • The Grand National is run over a distance of 4 miles 514 yards (6.9 km) and is the longest National Hunt race in the UK.
  • Aintree Racecourse is owned by The Jockey Club.

Popular Questions

✅How do I get to Aintree Racecourse?

By Rail – Aintree is served by its own railway station directly opposite the racecourse with trains arriving from Liverpool Lime Street every 15-mins on race days (and even more frequently during the Grand National!).

By Bus – buses travel from Liverpool city centre regularly and National Express schedule coaches to Aintree from a variety of destinations on event days.

By Car – car parking usually needs to be booked in advance, and the racecourse is a short drive from Liverpool city centre. The postcode for the stat nav is Ormskirk Road, Aintree, Liverpool, L9 5AS

By Air – those travelling from further afield can fly into Liverpool John Lennon Airport, just a 20-min car ride away.

✅Who owns Aintree Racecourse?

It is part of The Jockey Club’s elite portfolio of fourteen British racecourses, and whilst known for its enormous sense of fun and occasion, it is also considered amongst the greenest and most sustainable of British race tracks.

✅What date is the 2024 Grand National?

The Grand National of 2024 will be held on Saturday 13 April.

✅What date is Ladies Day at Aintree in 2024?

Ladies Day at Aintree in 2024 is on Friday 12 April. Tickets sell out so be sure to book early.

✅How can I buy Aintree racecourse tickets?

You can buy direct from the racecourse website or the official Jockey Club’s website.

It is always best to buy in advance.

Frequently Asked Questions about Aintree

  1. Is the Grand National the only race ran over the Grand National Course and the famous national fences?” No, there are other races over the racecourse throughout the year, so those iconic national fences, such as Becher‘s Brook, the Canal Turn and the Chair are jumped at other times of the year, most notably in the Becher Chase and Grand Sefton.
  2. Who is your favourite National winner or runner of all time?” There are so many great runnings of the race and so many great performances from winners and placed horses alike. Surely every list has to start with Red Rum, the most successful horse in the race and a three-time winner. Other favourite winners have included Tiger Roll and Many Clouds, the grey Neptunes Collonges, Rough Quest and who can forget the run of the brilliant Crisp, probably the best horse to run in the race and not win it when denied late on trying to give weight to Red Rum.
  3. Who are the most successful jockeys and trainers at the Grand National Aintree meeting?” The best trainers at the track over the past few years are led by Nicky Henderson, Paul Nicholls, Dan Skelton and Willie Mullins, looking further back Jenny Pitman and of course Ginger McCain, the trainer of Red Rum. In terms of jockeys, Davy Russel, AP McCoy, Ruby Walsh and Richard Dunwoody.
  4. What is the postcode for Aintree racecourse?” The postcode for Aintree races is L9 5as.

Summary of Aintree Racecourse

A stunning and fun racecourse owned by the Jockey Club, Aintree is a firm favourite and household name across the world.

Largely this is due to it being home to the most famous horse race in the world, but a great atmosphere, superb races and brilliant facilities make it an annual tradition for locals and fun-seekers alike.

If you haven’t visited yet, you need to add it to your bucket list, it’s an occasion and spectacle not to be missed.

A British Racecourse Guide top pick and one of our Top Ten Racecourses in the UK.