Category Archives: York


York’s two-day Music Showcase weekend on Friday evening and Saturday afternoon (July 26 & 27), supported by Sky Bet, combines Pattern race quality action on the track and live performances on the music stage, so it is no surprise that each event has a track record of being the best attended meeting of its type, in the country.

Given the forecast for a sunny week ahead, racegoers in County Stand are being advised that a formal jacket is not required, however Gentlemen still need to wear a collared shirt and tie.

An act that has already sold more than 30 million albums worldwide, will perform after racing on Friday evening 26 July, as Tears For Fears will be on stage.

After racing on Saturday 27 July, James Arthur, a northern pop powerhouse, with a string of hits including the Number Ones, “Impossible” & “Say you won’t let go” will perform.

The only evening fixture of the season at York gets underway at 6.00 pm on Friday with gates opening at 4pm.

The highlight of a six race card has prize money of £125,000; is the eleventh running of a Listed race for fillies and mares, the British Stallion Studs EBF Lyric Stakes. On its own, it offers an impressive prize fund of £50,000 and is one of twenty-two contests on the Knavesmire this year supported by The European Breeders’ Fund. Last year’s race was won by the Juddmonte Farms owned, Desert Diamond, giving Sir Michael Stoute a third success in the race (after Diploma in 2016 and Nouriya in 2010) and a first win for jockey, Oisin Murphy.

Also featured on a Friday evening this year is a handicap contest over five and a half furlongs that demonstrates Sky Bet’s commitment to the sport as they help celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Professional Jockeys Association.

Both days form part of the Go Racing In Yorkshire Summer Festival, an initiative that links the eight flat courses in the county, over nine days of fantastic sport. The Leeds based online betting firm have also taken the chance to demonstrate their support for racing in the County by backing this entire week.

Lady riders are in the spotlight in the opening race, The Silks Series Handicap, as this nationwide initiative that focuses on female riders. It gains the support of eventmasters, a leading nationwide supplier of high quality event hospitality at major sporting occasions, including at York.

Whilst a competitive handicap takes the name of Irish Thoroughbred Marketing, confirming that the minimum value of any race at York this season is £15,000.

Saturday’s quality seven-race programme means the prize money for the two days will approach £400,000. The action starts at 2-05 p.m. with the entire card sponsored by Sky Bet – the Leeds based firm who are also the sponsors of the first £1m Ebor Handicap at York.

The principal race on Saturday is the fourteenth running of The Sky Bet York Stakes, with prize money of  £120,000; this Group 2 contest is run over the extended one mile and a quarter. Won to emotional scenes last year by Thundering Blue, a first pattern race victory for the star of David Menuisier’s yard who returned to York to take third place in the Group One Juddmonte International. So watch for this year’s champion in the richest race of York’s season, the £1,000,000 Juddmonte International on Wednesday 21 August.

Also featured on Saturday’s strong card is the fastest race of the two days, the Sky Bet Dash. This £50,000 sprint is over six furlongs. Last year’s winner was Flying Pursuit, who defended the race won in 2017 for Malton-based trainer Tim Easterby, though Nathan Evans and Rachel Richardson share the rider credits.

Several giant screens will enable racegoers to enjoy even more of the action from both the track and the stage on both days, as well as following the action from the other big Saturday race meeting at Ascot.

Away from the main stage, there will be music from both Doctor Thirsty and The Monotones. The popular ‘Punter’s Panel’ takes place prior to racing helping racegoers to identify possible winners.

For the best in racing and live music York is the perfect venue.



NEWMARKET trainer Simon Crisford is looking forward to running the high-quality Mordin in the John Smith’s Diamond Jubilee Cup at York on Saturday.

The consistent five-year-old, who recorded a fourth career success when easily winning on his seasonal reappearance at Haydock, already boasts significant form in heritage handicap company having finished runner-up in the Cambridgeshire at Newmarket last season.

Mordin was last seen lining up in the Hunt Cup at Royal Ascot where he was beaten just over four lengths into tenth, and the son of Invincible Spirit will return to the extended mile and a quarter on the Knavesmire having run midfield in the corresponding race last season.

However, the in-form Crisford – whose fine season was headlined by a first success at the Royal meeting last month – is under no illusions of the task facing Mordin as he goes to post for a red-hot renewal of the £200,000 feature contest.

“We’re looking forward to it,” Crisford said. “It’s such a famous, historic race and it’s one of those races that is so difficult to win because it’s so competitive.

“The horse is approaching the race in good form – he ran in the contest last year – and we’re very pleased with him.”

A maximum field of 22 are set to enter the new larger stalls at York for the 2019 running of the John Smith’s Diamond Jubilee Cup – a race first staged in 1960 and one that has often produced a subsequent Group-level winner.

Mordin has been drawn in stall 20 on Saturday and Crisford admits he would have preferred a lower stall.

“He’s got an awkward post position, which doesn’t give us a lot of options being drawn out wide,” the trainer said.

Mordin, rated 106, will be partnered for the first time by apprentice Seamus Cronin, who will claim a handy 5lb on what is his second ride for the stable; seeking to emulate subsequent Champion Jockey Paul Hanagan who took the contest back in 2002.

“Mordin has reached a very respectable level and he’s obviously a very good horse, but with the rating he has it makes life tough for him in handicaps, but also tough if he steps beyond handicap company,” Crisford added.

“He’s in one of those areas where the racing is particularly competitive and it’s hard for him to be winning, but he deserves to take his chance.

“I was looking for someone to take a bit of weight off his back. Seamus is a very promising young jockey and hopefully the horse can give him a good ride.”

The action begins on Saturday with the John Smith’s City Walls Stakes, a Listed contest run over five furlongs, and the ten-strong field includes veteran speedster Caspian Prince.

Later on the card, Gold Mount – who won the Listed Sky Bet Race To The Ebor Grand Cup Stakes over York’s one mile and six furlong-trip last month – will return to the same course and distance in the Group 3 John Smith’s Silver Cup Stakes where a number of contenders for the £1m Sky Bet Ebor itself will be put to the test.

The six-year-old was mooted as a potential Melbourne Cup aspirant following that two and a quarter-length victory and he will face seven rivals as he bids to maintain his unbeaten record for Ian Williams.

The high-class, seven-race card gets underway at 2.05pm.


ARCHER’S DREAM will bid to protect her 100 per cent record when she contests the Group 3 William Hill Summer Stakes at York on Friday.

The James Fanshawe-trained filly has kept improving since making a winning debut at Doncaster back in April.

She made it three from three when dead-heating in the Listed Cathedral Stakes at Salisbury last month.

Now she is being asked to step up again in class as part of a 17-strong field for Friday’s six-furlong feature on the Knavesmire.

Newmarket-based Fanshawe said: “She has done nothing but progress all season.

“We’re trying to take it step by step. She’s strong and a powerful filly but she’s not the biggest.

“You’re only going to learn on the racecourse how good she really is because at home she never actually shows you a great deal. She’s pretty relaxed about things.

“But saying that, at the two-furlong pole at Salisbury she really did go and quicken up well there, so I think she’s got a good turn of foot. Will that be effective as she goes up in grade? Well, we’ll see.

“At Salisbury she was really tough and probably took it up soon enough – she was in front a long time up the hill. Hopefully at York she can take her time a bit more.”

Whatever happens, Archer’s Dream is proving another success story for Fred Archer Racing who have gone from strength to strength since Fanshawe’s wife Jacko established the partnerships ahead of the 2014 season.

Their chief flag-bearer has been Group 1 hero The Tin Man but Archer’s Dream is just the latest in a series of successful horses to run in the increasingly recognisable dark blue and dark red silks.

Fanshawe added: “Jacko started it off and the first decent horse was The Tin Man but the syndicate had ten winners from 11 horses last year. It’s always difficult to follow that up, but Archer’s Dream has won three and been another good example for Fred Archer Racing – and she didn’t cost a fortune either. We bought her because I trained her dam and she was pretty useful and it’s a good family.”

York’s two-day meeting begins on Friday at 2.05pm with a seven-race card. Saturday’s feature is the renowned John Smith’s Diamond Jubilee Cup, worth £200,000.