Wetherby night races under starter’s orders

The first of Wetherby’s two evening fixtures takes place on Thursday May 31 when the seven-race programme over jumps starts at 5.55pm.

And it’s the annual Community Race Night, when members of the local community in designated postcode areas (see www.wetherbyracing.co.uk) can pre-book a free Wetherby racecourse Community Card and gain free admission into the Paddock Enclosure.

Also, the seventh running of the Mascot Gold Cup, which should have taken place at Wetherby’s abandoned Sunday meeting last month, takes place over the final furlong of the track after the fourth race, with the ‘runners’ having to negotiate six small obstacles.

The Mascot Gold Cup is organised by Yorkshire Young Farmers in aid of various charities, in particular Sue Ryder Care, the national healthcare charity.

It is supported by the White Rose Branch of Foresters – the international financial services organisation.

There’s a range of free family attractions during the evening in the Paddock Enclosure provided by Empire Adventure Ltd, such as Bodyzorbing and a climbing wall.

In addition, youngsters can meet former course specialist at Wetherby, Mister McGoldrick, who has now retired and is in the care of New Beginnings, the Yorkshire-based enterprise which provides a safe environment for former racehorses. Now a 15-year-old, he won eight races at Wetherby.

Musical entertainment will be provided by a jazz band.

The feature races are The Party In The Paddock, Handicap Hurdle over two-and-a-half miles and The niddvale.co.uk Handicap Chase (extended two and three-quarter miles), the latter race being supported by Nidd Vale Group, the local Vauxhall cars dealership.