Sea Pigeon, Julie Krone and Princess Anne – Redcar celebrates 150 years | Horse racing news

John Grossick (

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Redcar: the first meeting in the course took place on August 9, 1872

John Grossick (

By Andrew Dietz

Redcar-linked racing personalities have recalled some of the defining moments that unfolded at the seaside track, which celebrates its 150th anniversary on Tuesday. The first meeting on the course took place on August 9, 1872 after years of racing on the sands of Redcar.

The Zetland name has been associated with racing in the North Yorkshire town for generations, with Lawrence Mark Dundas, the fourth Marquess of Zetland, taking over from his father as chairman and managing director of Redcar in 1981.

In 2018, Dundas handed over to John Sanderson, who has been involved with the course for “a long time” and recalls American jockey Julie Krone being lured to participate in a reunion in 1992.

“Nowadays we are very used to female riders, but it was a revelation at that time,” he said. “The current Lord Zetland paid for her to come, she was very well known in America and it got a lot of publicity. It was a special thing that Redcar did.”

The Hall of Fame jockey lived up to her expectations by scoring a hat-trick in five races. Redcar also hosted Princess Anne’s first winner, Gulfland, in 1986.

Edward Whitaker

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Julie Krone: Hall of Fame jockey paid a special visit to Redcar in 1992

Julie Krone: Hall of Fame jockey paid a special visit to Redcar in 1992

Edward Whitaker

As for equine stars, the mighty Sea Pigeon, trained at Malton by Peter Easterby, won the Vaux Gold Tankard at the course in 1977, 1978 and 1980.

“The Vaux Gold Tankard was raced in July during Goodwood Week and it was the richest handicap in Europe at the time,” Sanderson said.

“It was moved to the spring bank holiday on Monday to accompany the Zetland Gold Cup and Lester Piggott came and raced the two big races and the crowd was 25,000.”

Peter Easterby’s son Tim is Redcar’s best modern-day manager with 144 winners out of 1,891 riders. He said: “It’s a good track for our whole family and we’ve raced some good horses there over the years.

“It’s a wonderful track to race horses, it’s straight and flat with no sharp turns. We’ve always raced a lot of horses there, it’s a nice place to race a two-year-old for the first time, and it’s a track we need in the race.”

Redcar celebrated the milestone at its meeting on Saturday with the feature Celebrating 150 Years Of Redcar Racecourse Handicap won by Lion Tower for Northallerton trainer Grant Tuer.

The biggest race of the season at the circuit is the Listed Two-Year-Old Trophy in October, which was won by Group 1 winners Somnus and Limato.

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