Welcome to our official guide to Sandown Racecourse. In this section we explore this brilliant racecourse in detail, looking at its history, a guide to the track, top hotel picks, travel information, betting guides and even the weather!
Sandown is the name of a tourist-y beach destination on the Isle of Wight, but Sandown Park is a racecourse in Esher, Surrey; in the outer London suburbs. A course hosting five grade one National Hunt meets and one grade one flat meet, it is a diverse and versatile venue open almost every day of the year.
Sandown Park is one of fifteen racecourses in the UK owned and operated by the Jockey Club, and is a major events venue in the local area. Racing here takes place on any distance from five furlongs to three miles plus. Sandown Park hosts racing 24 days of the year but is frequently full of life year-round – hosting comedy nights, charity fundraisers, music concerts, exhibitions and conferences. Unusually, therefore, most of the racecourse’s staff are permanent, and not just hired on seasonal contracts. It is this staff management that helps bolster the superb customer service offering that attracts repeat visitors for all kinds of occasions time and time again.
Primarily attended by Londoners, Sandown Park is considered an easily-accessible ‘country’ day out and offers a variety of dining and hospitality options for customers of all budgets and appetites.
Despite there being other racecourses in the UK with royal connections, Sandown Park Racecourse is well known as being (what was) the Queen Mother’s favourite course and three of her horses – Arkle, Mill Reef and Desert Orchid – frequently raced here under her watchful eye.
Considered a very ‘modern’ racecourse amongst the backdrop of such a historical sport, Sandown Park Racecourse is one of the most accessible and popular in the UK.
Sandown Park Racecourse opened in 1875 and was the first in the country to charge for attendance – it was half a crown to enter. It was also the first to have an exclusive member’s enclosure: now considered a standard facility everywhere. Sandown Park is situated in a natural ampitheatre, which made it easy to construct as a purpose-built facility with strict attendance.
The first ever race meet at Sandown Park ran across three days and included the Grand National Hunt Chase, which is now held annually as part of the Cheltenham Festival. The Grand International Steeplechase took place during the same event with an impressive prize fund of £2,130 – more than even the winner of the infamous Grand National took home that year!
Once considered the norm, today Sandown Park is one of a few racecourses that still offers both National Hunt and flat racing as part of its horseracing season.
Main Races and Events
Sandown Park offers a packed calendar of events, so there’s several ‘main’ races here: notably, Imperial Cup Day, the Bet365 Jump Finale, and the Coral Summer Festival, which hosts Ladies Day and Gentlemen’s Day. The Imperial Cup sees grade three horses take on eight hurdles over two miles in a handicap race and the Bet365 Jump Finale sees them take on a whopping twenty four feces over three miles and five furlongs! The Coral Summer Festival combines racing with live music and is heavily attended by those with a casual interest in racing, but a serious one in a great day and evening out.
Tolworth Novices’ Hurdle, Gainsborough Chase, Scilly Isles Novices’ Chase, and Heroes Handicap Hurdle.
Sandown Racecourse Address
Sandown Park Racecourse
How To Get To Sandown Racecourse
Part of the attraction of Sandown Park Racecourse is its proximity to London, so it won’t surprise you to find that it’s extremely well connected with transport links.
Sandown Park’s car parks can comfortably fit 3,000 vehicles (for free on race days), with four electric car charging points available. Esher rail station is a 10-minute walk from the course, a walk which takes you directly over the track. It can also be reached by shuttle bus during major events, or there’s a taxi rank outside. Don’t be caught out though, Esher rail station is situated in zone six and so is not covered by standard Oyster Cards!
Those attending by air can do so easily into Heathrow or Gatwick, both of which are just twenty miles from the course, and there’s a helipad available for those attending racing on the course itself.
Hotels Near Sandown Racecourse
Because of its location, most attendees to Sandown Park choose to travel back the same day. However, those staying in Esher can choose from a few hotels close by to the racecourse, and they’re almost all independent!
The Mitre Hotel is a luxury option just walking distance from Hampton Court Palace, and the Woodlands Park Hotel is based in picturesque surroundings. For something slightly cheaper and lavish, but by no means any less comfortable, the Alexander Pope is recommended. All are within five miles of the course and will arrange taxi transport for you as required. Essentially all hotels in London will be accessible on public transport, however.
We recommend checking these out and booking through the brilliant Booking.com below:
Best Sandown 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 without having to queue. If you are looking to bet online we recommend the following great deals:
New Customers Only. Min deposit £5. Bet Credits available for use upon settlement of bets to value of qualifying deposit. Min odds, bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. Time limits and T&Cs apply. Full T&C's Apply
New UK & NI customers only. 18+. Sign up using promo code ‘SPORTS60’. Deposit & place first sports bet at a minimum of £10 in one bet transaction at evens (2.0) +. £30 paid in free bets within 48 hours of bet settlement, expires 7-days after issue. Doesn’t apply to customers who place their first bet on the Virtual Grand National. E-Wallet & Prepaid Card restrictions apply. Your first bet must be settled within 60 days of bet placement. SMS validation may be required. Game restrictions apply. Maximum 30 Free Spins on selected games. Free Spins expire after 7 days. Full T&Cs apply. Full T&C's Apply
Important info: 18+. UK+IRE only. Min first bet £5. Must be placed within 14 days of account reg. £20 credited as 4 x £5 free bets. Not valid with CashOut. Free bet valid for 4 days. Free bet stake not returned. T&Cs Apply. Full T&C's Apply
18+. UK+IRE only. Promo code 'G30' required. Min first bet £10. Must be placed within 14 days of account reg. £30 credited as 3 x £10 free bets. Not valid with CashOut. Free bet valid for 7 days.T&Cs Apply. Full T&C's Apply
New William Hill online customers only. Min. unit stake of £10/€10 at odds of 1/2 or greater. Only the “win” part from EW bets will count. Free bet terms, payment method & country restrictions apply. Free bets credited as 3 x £10/€10. Free bet stakes are not returned as part of the settlement of successful free bets. All Free Bets must be wagered within 30 days. Full T&C's Apply
New customers only. 18+, BeGambleAware.org. Min deposit £10. Money back as bonus. Wagering requirements: Sportsbook 3x at min. odds of 1.40 (2/5), Casino 25x. Only one bonus can be used at a time, Sportsbook bonus must be wagered before using the Casino, unless the bonus has been forfeited. Bonus will expire after 7 days of opt-in. Full T&C's Apply
Betting Shops Local to Sandown Racecourse
Betting on-course is recommended at the independent course-side bookmakers and they can be found in front of the main Grandstand and next to the rails on race days. Tote facilities and standard betting shops can also be found on-site.
Esher itself isn’t a particularly large town, so you won’t find many betting shops in the local area but there is a branch of Ladbrokes and one of Coral. Unlike many other country-set racecourses, mobile signal here is good; so there’s nothing stopping you hopping online to make a crafty bet if you don’t find odds that fit elsewhere!
Sandown Park Weather
It’s important to keep up the weather when arranging your trip to the races, so you are up to date with ground conditions and also so you can choose the right outfit. Check out the current weather today at Sandown:
Sandown Park is Surrey’s premier exhibition and conferencing facility, so there are various specialist shows staged here throughout the year. It is well known as a venue for live music, and in summer 2020 alone can boast bookings with the Pussycat Dolls, Nile Rodgers and Craig David!
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