Pontefract Racecourse prepares for Summer Festival Family Day

Metallic Black, ridden by Tony Hamilton, goes clear to notch a win at Pontefract's most recent race meeting. Picture: Alan Wright
Metallic Black, ridden by Tony Hamilton, goes clear to notch a win at Pontefract's most recent race meeting. Picture: Alan Wright

The second family day of the 2018 season at Pontefract tomorrow (Sunday) is the final day of the 11th Annual Go Racing In Yorkshire Summer Festival.

With racing taking place across the White Rose county throughout the preceding week, there’s going to be a real festival feel to the day’s proceedings. Trainers and jockeys will also be bidding to get that all important next win on the leader board as they aim to be the next top dog in their respective championships sponsored by Goldsborough Hall and Sky Bet.

In keeping with the festival feel, the track has introduced a Fake Festival with performances from some of the best tribute acts on the UK circuit.

With tributes to Gary Barlow, Robbie Williams, Tina Turner and cover band The Maxibrites performing before and after racing in the Grandstand & Paddock Enclosure. It’s definitely an afternoon not to be missed.

As has become the custom on Sundays at Pontefract, there’s a lot going on for the kids as well. With rides, a circus, face painting, free sweets, activity books, racecards and free pony rides there’s plenty to keep the little ones occupied while mums and dads enjoy some top class racing. Eagle eyed kids need to keep a look out for the lucky Golden Horseshoe too – there’s a hamper of sweets to be won for the first person to find it.

New Beginnings, a rehoming centre for retired racehorses, will be on course with a selection of ex-racers. The charity helps rehome and retrain racehorses who have ended their track careers by giving them a more laid back second career.

On track, Sky Bet support the main race on the card – the £50,000 Listed Pomfret Stakes over one mile.

David O’Meara has farmed the race in recent years. In 2017 his runner Custom Cut was bidding for his second win in the race but Richard Fahey, the course’s champion trainer of 2017, had other ideas when Another Touch took the race.

The festival’s leading trainer and jockey last year will be hoping to retain their titles. Tim Easterby had two winners at Ponte on the final day and David Allan sealed his victory with a brilliant treble. With the yard continuing in great form, they could well repeat the same feat.

Perhaps the most interesting winner from last year was Kings Will Dream, who won the maiden race on the card for Micky Hammond. He was then sold to race in Australia where he is unbeaten and has the Melbourne Cup on his agenda!

There are some special family day tickets available when booked in advance. Admitting two adults and their children, these special tickets can be purchased before the day for just £25. The Sunday Special packages are also selling fast – if you would like to take advantage of any special advance packages, see the course website (www.pontefract-races.co.uk) or call 01977 781307. Racing gets under way at 2pm and the gates open at 11.30am.