The European Breeders’ Fund Highfield Farm Flying Fillies’ Stakes - the fourth of Pontefract’s quintet of listed races during the season - tops a quality seven-race programme this Sunday, beginning at 2.15pm.
It’s Pontefract’s third and final Sunday fixture of 2014 and there’s a host of attractions for young racegoers from when the gates open at 11.30am.
As usual, accompanied children under 16 years of age are admitted free into all enclosures.
First held in 1999, the Flying Fillies’ Stakes - a race for fillies and mares over the sprint distance of six furlongs - offers prize money of £50,000 and is once again supported by the European Breeders’ Fund in conjunction with Highfield Farm Stud of Lancashire, owned by leading racehorse owners David and Emma Armstrong.
Artistic Jewel (trained at Lichfield by Ed McMahon) won last year’s race and was then runner-up by a nose in a group three race at the Curragh in Ireland.
This race is the third most valuable contest in the EBF calendar - the top two being at York and Newmarket.
Maiden two-year-olds take part the opening race, the British Stallion Studs EBF Trevor Woods Memorial Maiden Stakes, while Nova Display Ltd, of Peckfield Business Park, sponsor once again at this meeting. They supply bespoke services to shops and the retail trade and put their name to the final race, a handicap contest for sprinters over six furlongs.
Stayers are in action in the longest race of the afternoon, the St John Ambulance Handicap Stakes over two miles and one furlong.
This race is the fifth of the eight races which comprise this season’s Pontefract Stayers’ Championship, a competition which is led by New Youmzain, closely followed by Suprise Vendor and Teak.
Also featured are a couple of races supported by totepool (a handicap contest over one mile and a half, along with a contest for maidens over one mile), while the CGC Events For Conference and Banqueting Handicap Stakes is a race for three-year-olds over one mile.
The family attractions include a children’s fun-fair, along with face-painting and free ice-creams for children while stocks last.
There’s also a crèche facility and a ‘Hunt the Golden Horseshoe’ competition.
In addition, there are activity packs and racecards for children and the opportunity of going on a bus trip to see the start of the sprint races.
Musical entertainment is provided by the Yorkshire Volunteers Band.
There are pony rides in the picnic enclosure, and as this is ‘Flying Fillies Family Sunday’, there’s a ‘Mum’s Race.’
Also, this meeting celebrates and recognises speedy women in sport, and they’ll be a number of posters situated around the racecourse depicting successful female athletes, both human and equine.
The giant screen situated opposite the main stands will assist racegoers in following all of the action on the track.