One of Ireland?s premier racecourses, Leopardstown, located just six miles from Dublin, is host to a number of acclaimed meetings, under both National Hunt and Flat rules. The four-day Christmas Festival is the highlight of the Jumps season, staging seven Grade 1 contests, most notably the Savills Chase. The Dublin Racing Festival, established in 2018, is another of its most prestigious celebrations of jumps racing. Irish Champion Stakes day held in September is the highlight of the Flat season.
The Flat course is a left-handed, galloping oval track with easy bends and a long uphill finish from the final bend.
The Jumps track is again fair but with a testing uphill finish which really exposes a horse's stamina and three fences come up quickly down the back straight. The inner hurdles course is much sharper and it pays to race prominently.
Leopardstown racecourse was built in 1888 and it was Sandown Park in the UK on which it was modelled by Captain George Quin, who felt inspired to create something similar in his native Ireland. Quin founded the Leopardstown Race Company following his stint as Keeper of the Match Book for the Irish Turf Club .
The development of the track and its facilities took six months which led to a magnificent transformation of land used for grazing, into an attractive, high-quality racecourse boasting great transport links.
Racing at Leopardstown was a huge success from its inception with 50,000 people turning up to watch the exhilarating action from the stands and in 1907 a royal visit from King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra delighted locals. It remains one of Ireland?s most lauded tracks with fantastic viewing and a loyal, expert racing crowd.