Three days of racing excellence beckon from the green meadows of Newmarket Racecourse. The July Festival is all about Newmarket's July Course, one of its two famous racetracks. The July Course is Newmarket's summer racecourse - the Rowley Mile is used for spring and autumn races - and it is known for its infamous one mile straight, the so-called Bunbury Mile. To make the races a little more gruelling still, the last furlong before the finish line is on an incline. The July Mile sets the scene for all the highly acclaimed races at the July Festival, including the July Cup and the July Stakes.
The first day of the July Festival at Newmarket Racecourse is centred around fashion, classical live music, best-dressed competitions and getting into the festival spirit. The feature race of Day One is the Falmouth Stakes, a Group 1 race over one mile open to mares and fillies.
Ladies Day! If you thought the first day of fashion would put a stop to the next day's outrageous dress standards, you were gravely mistaken. Ladies' Day features competitions involving hats, plenty of champagne and some top quality racing.
The final day of Newmarket's July Festival host the race everyone is waiting for - the July Cup. Naturally there are a number of other races to enjoy, as well as the grand finale to the festival, which will leave you breathless.
The July Cup is the feature race of the July Festival at Newmarket. It is conducted on the July Course, however it is not run over the entire length of the course. The July Cup is a sprint race held over six furlongs, which has been testing the Grade 1 sprinting thoroughbreds since 1876. Since it was established, the July Cup is considered the unofficial test for horses competing for the title of European Champion Sprinter. Although no horse has yet won the July Cup more than three times (this record is held by Sundridge who took the win in 1902, 1903 and 1904), it is subject to one of the most impressive jockey records in racing history. Jockey Lester Piggott won the July Cup ten times, making him Newmarket's official record holder (1957 on Vigo, 1958&59 on Right Boy, 1960 on Tin Whistle, 1973 on Thatch, 1974 on Saritamer, 1978 on Solinus, 1979 on Thatching, 1980 on Moorestyle, and 1992 on Mr Brooks).