New All-Weather training tracks planned for Lambourn
The Jockey Club wants to build two new, all weather horse race training tracks in Lambourn. Top trainers have thrown their weight behind the plans.
“We have needed a facility like this for an awfully long time,” wrote Charlie Mann. “Thanks to The Jockey Club we have the best training facilities in the country, however in order to stay at the pinnacle it’s crucial that The Jockey Club keeps on striving to improve their facilities. This plan would certainly make sure that it does.”
Jockey Club Estates has lodged a planning application to West Berkshire Council, which also includes a schooling arena and machinery store on agricultural land next to their gallops.
Jamie Snowden has trained more than 250 winners from Folly House in Lambourn.
“I can safely say that the facilities that the Jockey Club provide are phenomenal. However, as ever our competitors are improving their facilities and in order for Lambourn to maintain its position as the best place to train National Hunt horses, there is a clear need to improve the schooling facilities here in Lambourn, as well as the variety of gallops available to use.”
“The addition of a round gallop to the current facilities will bring the gallops up to modern day standards and will be a huge benefit to my training regime,” said Oliver Sherwood.
The circular track will have a radius of 62.53 metres (to the inner edge), a length of 402.34 metres (two furlongs – based on the centre line).
The oval track will consist of two 55 metre straights, with two bends of radius 22 metres and 25m (to inner edge).
After Newmarket, Lambourn is the second largest centre of its kind in Great Britain and forms a vital base for the nation’s horse racing industry – the development of which is supported by West Berkshire Council.
Currently there are over 700 horses using the facilities at Lambourn Gallops daily- up from approximately 350 horses per day in 2006.
In its submission, the Jockey Club said: “If the facilities are lacking, this can cause serious issues for trainers, horses and jockeys, and could limit their development potential.
“Due to the number of trainers that rely upon JCE’s facilities any impacts would certainly be felt within the wider community. Numerous other business rely on the horse racing industry including specialist equine vets, farriers, feed and bedding providers, horse transport companies, physiotherapists, rug cleaners, equine dentists and many others.”
Further justifying the bid, JCE says that, conventionally, racehorses are trained on extended straight gallops, usually uphill.
“This remains key to their training but as our understanding of the equine anatomy and physiology has developed it is becoming apparent that other indicators also need to be analysed and fine-tuned to produce top quality horses.”
The proposal is to provide a facility that will safeguard the longevity of the racing horse industry in Lambourn without causing detriment to the character of the AONB.