The Newmarket July Festival is a three-day bonanza of high-class flat horse racing, fashion, entertainment, and fantastic food and drink. Day one will have exhilarating racing and fantastic fashion on show in equal measure, and the pick of the action on Newmarket Ladies Day is the Group Two Princess of Wales's Tattersalls Stakes.
On Friday, Gentleman’s Day, another action-packed day of Newmarket horse racing awaits punters. While taking in an afternoon dressed in their best, racegoers will have the Group One Tattersalls Falmouth Stakes to enjoy. This cracking mile-long race offers top three-year-old fillies the chance to test themselves against older rivals and is regularly one to savour.
But the pinnacle of the Newmarket Festival is the Darley July Cup. Run over six furlongs on Saturday, it is one of the most prestigious sprint races in the world, with trainers and horses travelling from as far away as Australia in their bid for greatness. The most recent winner of the race on the Newmarket July course was Oxted, who followed up that success with an amazing win at Royal Ascot in the King’s Stand Stakes.
We’ve got everything you need to know about the big meeting covered below.
The Newmarket July course is the stage for a fantastic three-day festival of racing each summer. There are seven Group races across the three days, including two Group 1s – one of which is the meeting’s highlight, the July Cup. This spectacular six-furlong shoot-out is for sprinters with a touch of class and is one of the most popular Newmarket races of the year. It’s always an ultra-competitive contest, which makes it incredibly tricky to solve when you’re trying to decide on your Newmarket racing tips. Only five of the last 19 runnings have been won by favourites, but at the same time, only seven of the winners of those races won at double-figure odds, with the longest being a 22/1 shot. You can pretty much rule out any runner aged over five though, this is not an event for the veterans. And look for horses who ran at Royal Ascot last time out.
The other Group 1 in this highlight among Newmarket’s summer race fixtures is the Falmouth Stakes for fillies and mares, run on the second day of the meeting. Followers of Newmarket horse racing will be aware that this is a contest that usually goes to a well-fancied runner. Only one of the last 20 winners came from outside the first six in the betting.
The top-quality Newmarket horse racing begins on Thursday, with the Group 2 July Stakes - one of the standouts of a card that fizzes with quality. This is a contest for two-year-olds, with many promising juveniles looking to follow up from runs at Royal Ascot. All the last 12 winners had run in the previous 40 days, while half had run in – though not necessarily won – the Coventry Stakes or the Windsor Castle Stakes at the Royal meeting. Many Newmarket races have strong trends associated with them and it’s always worth doing your research before placing your bets.
The Newmarket horse racing action comes thick and fast at the July Festival, with a fantastic array of elite flat racing to enjoy over the three days. From prestigious Group races, to challenging big-field handicaps, this meeting has it all over the summer course at the headquarters of UK racing.
SNOW LANTERN looked very special indeed when she won her first race this year at Newbury in promising style. The three-year-old grey blotted her copybook next time out, but bounced back by finishing second to Alcohol Free in the mud at Royal Ascot. She faces her rival again in the Group 1 Falmouth Stakes, but Snow Lantern’s trainer Richard Hannon believes his filly will be suited by the much firmer ground that she’ll find at the Newmarket July course. There’s also the whiff of restitution in the air, as Snow Lantern’s outstanding dam Sky Lantern (below) was controversially beaten in the 2013 running of the Falmouth. Her daughter is a confident tip to set the record straight.
Several of the field in the Group 2 July Stakes on the first day of the meeting last met in the Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot. One of them is TOLSTOY, who finished 10th that day but was only a fraction over five lengths behind the winner. Despite starting slowly, he ran very well for a long way in a wide-open contest and may not have been favoured by being drawn on the far side. Tolstoy has the assistance of Frankie Dettori from the saddle again and it will not take a great deal of improvement from that Ascot run for him to go very close, which makes him one of the best outsider Newmarket racing tips of the meeting.
It’s amazing how one run can ruin a horse’s reputation. SUPREMACY ended 2020 as the highest rated juvenile in Britain after a hugely impressive victory in the Middle Park Stakes. Plans for 2021 were put on hold, however, when he ran a stinker on his reappearance at Ascot in April. His trainer Clive Cox never lost faith however, maintaining that he still has a very good horse on his hands, and it's significant that he has entered him in the Group 1 July Cup when there would undoubtedly be easier reintroductions to the racecourse. This is always a competitive battle but if Supremacy retains the ability he showed last year and can put that Ascot run behind him, he can take a hand in the finish at very decent odds.
When it comes to betting on the horse racing at the Newmarket July Festival, there are some simple do’s and don'ts that will help you enjoy the experience.
DO your homework. Spend some time researching the form book and checking out Newmarket Races runners’ previous races, as well as the form of trainers and jockeys at the Newmarket July Festival.
DO place extra value on horses’ previous form at Newmarket and, in particular, at previous festivals. This is a unique course and occasion – not every horse performs at its best here.
DO take note of the trends applying to winners of particular races on the Newmarket July course.
DO vary your stakes. You don’t have to bet the same amount on each race. It’s also wise to bet each-way on horses at double-figure odds in big-field handicaps.
DO take advantage of free bet offers and bonuses. The first day of Newmarket is a terrific day to open new accounts, while existing customers can also find plenty of offers.
DO look for, and take advantage of, special money-back offers on losers in certain races. You’re getting a risk-free bet.
DON’T listen to too many people. There is a huge number of opinions out there – take too much onboard and you’ll end up confused.
DON’T bet on every race. If you can’t pick a selection, you haven’t had any Newmarket Races tips, or you believe the favourite will win but the price is too short, it’s OK to sit this one out.
DON’T chase your losses. If you’ve had a few losers, it’s tempting to put more money on your next selection. Stick with your original staking plan.
DON’T make it all about the betting. Of course, enjoying a bet is a huge part of the Newmarket experience, but the festival is, first and foremost, a spectacle of incredible racing. Enjoy the action, savour it – then start looking forward to next year.
The Newmarket July Festival is so exciting and the atmosphere around it so intoxicating, that can be tempting to get carried away and bet more than you can afford. It’s essential to remember that betting should be a fun, stress free experience. The best way to approach the festival is to work out what you can happily spend across the three days - that way, any return you get is a pleasant bonus.
Never, ever bet beyond your means. It’s important that you gamble responsibly, for the sake of your own health and that of those close to you. If you are ever worried about your gambling habits, contact organisations such as GamCare that can help you.
Can you take alcohol into Newmarket Races?
Yes, but only certain types. Alcohol can only be brought in with a substantial picnic. It is limited to one bottle of wine or champagne, or four cans of beer, cider, or pre-mixed aperitif per person. Spirits, fortified wines and Pimm's are not allowed onto the racecourse.
Who owns Newmarket Racecourse?
Newmarket Racecourse is owned by the Jockey Club. It is the largest commercial horse racing organisation in the UK and owns 15 of Britain's most famous racecourses.
How to get to Newmarket Races
Getting to Newmarket Racecourse is easy. Outrider Coach Services are available from Cambridge Train Station on all race days. There are also offer services from Royston, Bury St Edmunds and Ely (via Soham) during all Newmarket Nights and Festivals. Pre-bookings for Outrider Services is highly recommended. There is also a Newmarket Races shuttle bus, but it’s not currently running due to Covid.
Where is Newmarket Racecourse?
Newmarket Racecourse is in Newmarket, Suffolk. The address of the track is Foremans Office, Rowley Mile Racecourse, Cambridge Road, Newmarket, CB8 0TF.
What to wear to the Newmarket Races?
This depends on what part of Newmarket Racecourse you are in. There is a very strict dress code in the Premier, Hospitality and Champions Lawn facilities. No sportswear, trainers, t-shirts, fancy dress, cargo shorts, ripped or torn denim, or ‘extreme’ attire is permitted. Smart tailored shorts are acceptable, as is dark denim. In the Grandstand & Paddock and Garden Enclosure, the dress code is more relaxed; jeans, t-shirts and trainers are acceptable.
When is the Newmarket July Festival?
The Newmarket July Festival kicks off on Thursday July 8th and finishes on Saturday July 10th. It is one of the most popular events on the flat racing calendar.