Everything You Need To Know About Newcastle Racecourse
Last updated & tested: 2019-07-18
Newcastle and horse racing go way back. Killingworth to the north of the city was the first place in the area recorded as holding races during the early Seventeenth Century. The Town Moor – not to be confused with the one at Doncaster where the St Leger is held – saw the first official running of the Northumberland Plate in 1833, but racing was transferred to the Gosforth Park area of Newcastle in the early 1880s and remained there every since.
You may hear the Plate referred to colloquially as the Pitmen’s Derby – a reference to the coal mining heritage of surrounding Northumbria. The Flat track at Newcastle racecourse was replaced with an All-Weather surface during 2016 and now the big feature race is run on that. A jumps course on which the Grade 1 2m Fighting Fifth over hurdles and Rehearsal Handicap and Eider Chase over fences are contested remain fixtures during the winter months despite the bad weather sometimes encountered in the north east of England. Newcastle races are on a left-handed and flat track, which may not suit all types of thoroughbred but, with rich heritage surrounding the feature races held there, you always have respect horses that stay.
Newcastle racecourse and the upcoming events you can bet on
As alluded to above, Newcastle horse racing encompasses both Flat/All-Weather and National Hunt action at different times of the year. That means this venue is a dual purpose one and, like any other track, the big betting attention surrounds a select few top class races across these spheres every single year. Check out these Newcastle racecourse upcoming events that you can take a punt on…
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Eider Chase – A Grand National trial
There aren’t that many races anywhere in the British Isles that can serve as a true trial for the Grand National at Aintree, because so few contests elsewhere are over four miles plus. Newcastle racecourse has one such stamina test, however, in the form of the Eider Chase that takes place in February over an extended 4m.
Like the National itself, this is a handicap over fences and has produced just one subsequent winner of the Aintree showpiece. That was Comply Or Die, who landed both races back in 2008. Milansbar, who was fifth in 2018, ran into the same place in the Grand National, so it is always worth looking at these Newcastle race results at those who got round in the Eider to see if there’s an each-way bet among those in-behind for the big one on Merseyside.
Northumberland Plate – The summer highlight
Staying handicaps at Newcastle races aren’t just limited to the jumps, however, as the Plate is an extended 2m test on the level now held on that All-Weather surface towards the end of June. Since it was moved to its current location, multiple winners have been few and far between, but Tominator (2010 and 2012) is a rare example.
Like the Ebor at York and Cesarewitch at Newmarket, the Northumberland Plate has a rich tradition of being a valuable prize for Flat stayers. Withhold is a recent example of a horse that has won both the Plate and Cesarewitch within a 12-month period when allowed to make all and dictate the pace from the front. The rich heritage of this race cannot be overstated and there’s a consolation race held on the same card.
Across the two-day meeting, there are also a couple of Group 3 contests supporting the Plate. The Hoppings Stakes is a fillies and mares only contest over 1m 2f, while the Chipchase Stakes is a 6f sprint for horses aged three and up. These are great opportunities to get races into Flat horses that may have missed Royal Ascot but are still in need of a run before the July Festival at Newmarket or Glorious Goodwood.
Fighting Fifth Hurdle day – A winter warmer
The Fighting Fifth Hurdle is the first leg of the Triple Crown of Hurdling in British National Hunt racing, with Kempton’s Christmas Hurdle and the Champion Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival the other two Grade 1s you need to win. Landing the hat-trick is a rare feat of training and only legendary handlers Sir Michael Stoute with Kribensis (1989-1990) and Nicky Henderson thanks to Buveur d’Air (2017-18) have done it with the same horse in the same season.
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As a result of it being a Grade 1 prize over hurdles, the Fighting Fifth has a very illustrious roll of honour that includes Comedy Of Errors, Night Nurse, Birds Nest and Sea Pigeon. Champion Hurdle trials have sprung up elsewhere since this event was established in 1969 on both sides of the Irish Sea.
Supporting the Fighting Fifth on the card is the Rehearsal Handicap Chase – a Listed contest over fences and almost 3m. As with the big race, Newcastle results here can influence similar events for the remainder of the National Hunt season and it always attracts interesting entries.
Who is the best bookmaker to bet on Newcastle horse racing with?
Given their sponsorship of the premier jumps races at Newcastle, Unibet are well worth a look when you want to bet on the Fighting Fifth. They also sponsor the Champion Hurdle – the third and final leg of the Triple Crown of Hurdling that has been achieved just twice in history. As an international bookmaker that acquired the High Street operators Stan James, Unibet have plenty of stroke in the UK as well as abroad.
They will take on their competitors by offering the top prices on the big one at Newcastle as well as providing you with the best odds guaranteed on all UK and Irish horse racing. This means if the starting price horses are returned at are bigger than the early price you took in the build-up to the race, you get winnings paid out at the larger odds. Be on the lookout for price boosts and enhanced place terms on big field handicaps like the Eider Chase or Northumberland Plate. These are all part of the service and, with Unibet offering a wider gambling experience including casino, slot and table games, you won’t be short of opportunities to place bets on their sportsbook and other platforms.
All the Newcastle horse racing betting tips you need
Knowing the significance of Newcastle race results is one thing, but getting good tips on the big events happening at the course is quite another. There are so many so-called experts out there that it can be difficult to know where to begin. That is where OpenOdds can help. Our tipsters are old hands at the game and have backgrounds in horse racing that mean they know value when they see it. In competitive contests like the Plate or Eider, there’s going to be dangers and alternative horses to back aplenty.
Besides putting up a main selection that we believe to the best value bet and stands the best chance of winning, we’ll point out those you need to be wary of or consider instead. In big field handicaps like those we’ve just name-dropped, each-way betting comes into its own. Sometimes you’ll see there’s value in backing horses to make the frame rather than going for the win only. We’ve got this perspective covered too, so you’re left in no doubt as what the best betting options are at Newcastle races. Take a look at the latest horse racing tips from right across the UK and Ireland because, in this sport, there’s always something to take a punt on.
Some expert advice on Newcastle horse racing
Getting the latest entries and weights for the key races at Newcastle racecourse is essential if you’re betting on these events. At OpenOdds, we understand the importance of keeping our readers in the know about all this and more. Taking a betting first approach to developing stories in the horse racing world is just as important as knowing the latest Newcastle results, so you’re completely in the picture about what is happening to the market. The name of the game is leaving you better informed about what is going on with horse racing betting as we countdown to important Festivals and big races.
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Another way to keep people in the know, especially if you’re new to it all, is to educate you on some of the terms and jargon that are used with betting on the horses. Thanks to our glossary section that has detailed articles that explain what they all mean in a way that’s easy to understand, you can get your head around any racing terminology. Know your allowance races from your handicaps and ante post wagers from each-way betting by looking up the phrase of your choice and get all the jargon busted! Find it all right here.