Ebor Festival 2018 Betting Offers
The Ebor festival takes its name from the old Roman name for York, Eboracum. The festival has been going for nearly 175 years, first established in 1843, and offers three group 1 races, four group 2 and three group 3 over the four days. The most famous race however is not actually a group race but rather the richest flat handicap in the Europe, the Betfred Ebor Handicap run on the fourth and final day, Saturday 26th August.
With a prize fund of around £300,000 and nearly £178,000 for the winner the Ebor Heritage Handicap is a fitting finale to a great week of racing in the warm August sun. On this page you will find all of the top promotions from our recommended horse racing betting sites, use these to get the best possible value from your racing bets. Further down you can find information on scheduling day by day, racecards, key facts and history.
Latest Ebor Festival Promotions
Ebor Festival 2018 Schedule
Ebor is no bit part festival, in fact is has more prestigious races than both Glorious Goodwood and the St Leger Festival. There are 25 races to look forward to from Wednesday to Saturday with a group one race on each of the first three days followed by the Ebor handicap itself on the final fourth day.
York racecourse is a jewel in the crown for both Yorkshire and northern English racing in general. You can’t help but notice not just the historic races but also the longer history of the site that dates back to the early English settlers who grazed cattle on the rich pastures.
Ebor Day One – Juddmonte International Day – Wednesday 22nd August 2018
|1:55||Symphony Group Stakes||Class 2 – Handicap||5f 89y|
|2:25||Acomb Stakes||Group 3||7f|
|3:00||Great Voltigeur Stakes||Group 2||1m 3f 188y
|3:35||Juddmonte International Stakes||Group 1 (British Champions Series)
||1m 2f 56y|
|4:15||Fine Equinity Stakes||Class 2 – Handicap||2m 56y|
|4:50||Betway Stakes||Class 2 – Nursery Handicap||6f|
m mile f furlong y yards
Day 1 at the Ebor Festival is all about the Juddmonte International Stakes from which the race day takes its name. The 1 mile 2-furlong group 1 race, the fourth of the day and part of the British Champions Series, was known many years ago as the Benson & Hedges Gold Cup, its open to three year olds and upwards and commands a prize fund not too far shy of a million pounds with almost £570,000 for the winner. Previous winners include the great Frankel in 2012 and the race is seen as one of the greatest middle distance races of the flat season.
It’s not all about the International Stakes however. The festival gets underway with Symphony Group Stakes, a handicap for 3yo+ nags, it’s a fast race over just 5 furlongs, perfect to get the adrenaline going for the rest of the day. The Acomb Stakes group 3 is up second, just under a mile long it’s a great dash for 2 year olds who want to go on to group one races the following season. The winner of this can pick up around £51k.
The Third race is the second best of the day, the group 2 Great Voltigeur Stakes. This race for three-year olds goes over a mile and four furlongs and is seen as similar to the Epsom Derby. The Voltigeur Stakes is a qualifier for the St Leger in September and has produced 13 winners already, the winner can expect to take home in excess of £96k. Day one is finished off with two handicaps, the first, the Fine Equinity Stakes, is a 2 miler for 4yo+ horses and the second, the Betway Stakes Nursery handicap, a 6 furlong spring for 2yo’s.
Ebor Day Two – Ladies’ Day – Thursday 23rd August 2018
|1:55||Premier Yearling Stakes||Class 2||6f|
|2:25||SkyBet Lowther Stakes||Group 2||6f|
|3:00||Clipper Logistics Stakes||Class 2 – Handicap||7f 192y|
|3:35||Darley Yorkshire Oaks||Group 1 (British Champions Series)||1m 3f 188y
|4:15||EBF Sir Henry Cecil Galtres Stakes||Class 1 – Listed||1m 3f 188y|
|4:50||EBF Fillies’ Stakes||Class 2 – Handicap||7f|
The fourth race of the day is again the headline grabber on day 2, ladies’ day, at the Ebor festival. The Yorkshire Oaks, group one British champions series, is open to 3-year-old and older fillies’ and mares and is known for some top class racing from Europe’s prime horses. The distance is one mile and four furlongs, the prize for the winner is in the region of £200k.
The first race of the day is another 2yo sprint over 6 furlongs open to both sexes. The Yearling Stakes pays well with over a quarter million prize pot and £185k to the winner. The victor will have to go some though with the size of the field in this one.
Of course the ladies won’t get all their finery on for any old meeting and so it’s good news that day two also features a great little fast 6 furlong group 2 race for younger 2-year-old fillies’. The Lowther Stakes, the second dash of the day, attracts some of the best young fillies’ another fast dash with a field of up to 20 horses with around £145k for the winner.
The third race is the Clipper Logistics handicap, another big field run, this time over one mile, before the top race. The usually sunny Ladies Day is capped off with a 1 mile 4 furlong class one listed for 3yo+ followed by a class 2 handicap for 3yo+ fillies.
Ebor Day Three – Friday 24th August 2018
|1:55||Sky Bet Stakes||Class 2||1m 3f 188y|
|2:25||Lonsdale Cup||Group 2 (British Champions Series)||2m 56y|
|3:00||City of York Stakes||Group 3||7f|
|3:35||Nunthorpe Stakes||Group 1 (British Champions Series)
|4:15||EBF Convivial Maiden Stakes||Class 2 – Plus 10||7f|
|4:50||Nationwide Stakes||Class 2 – Handicap||7f 192y|
Friday, Day 3, has a similar layout to ladies’ day with a group 2 race, the Lonsdale Cup, second and the top race of the day, the Nunthorpe Stakes group one, fourth up. Day three has the added bonus of a group three race sandwiched in between in third place, the York Stakes.
We are eased into the third day with a middle distance handicap for three year olds. This race is sponsored by Sky Bet and this means they usually have crazy offers, such as money back if you lose (listed at the top of this page when available). The first serious race of day 3 is the Lonsdale Cup. The Cup, part of the British champions series, is one of the longer group 2 races in the calendar at 2 miles and 56 yards and a nice test for the 3yo+ runners paying £115,000 to the victor.
The York Stakes up next commands a nice prize pool with around £100k to the winner, this starts a series of four fast races in a row. The 7 furlong run is also open to 3yo+ horses.
The fastest race of the week, and also one of the quickest flat races of the season, the 5 furlong Nunthorpe Stakes, brings the atmosphere at York up a notch. The group one race goes back to 1903 where it began as a selling race and has gained steady prestige since. The race brings out the top sprinters at the peak of the season and often requires a photo finish to decide who will win the nearly £200k prize for the winner. This race is also part of the British Champions Series.
Day 3 ends with a another fast seven furlong plus 10 2yo run with a decent field (max 20) followed by a similarly large field miler handicap for 3-year-olds.
Ebor Day Four – Saturday 25th August 2018
|1:55||Strensall Stakes||Group 3||1m 177y|
|2:25||Melrose Stakes||Class 2 – Heritage Handicap||1m 5f 188y|
|3:00||Gimcrack Stakes||Group 2||6f|
|3:35||Betfred Ebor Heritage Handicap||Class 2 – Heritage Handicap||1m 5f 188y|
|4:10||Roses Stakes||Class 1 – Listed||5f|
|4:40||Jack Berry House Stakes||Class 2 – Handicap||1m 2f 56y|
|5:15||Apprentice Stakes||Class 2 – Handicap||5f|
Ebor Day itself finishes off the festival. It makes a nice change to see a Heritage Handicap race as the showcase of a flat horse racing festival instead of the usual high profile group one races. Handicaps are always more open races with larger numbers of runners and this adds some extra excitement for the more occasional racing punter.
The fourth day is the only day of the week with seven races on the card. There is no gentle start to this day either with the Strensall Stakes going off first. The race was promoted to group 3 in 1987 when it was also opened to colts.
The Melrose Stakes, up second on the card, offers spectators a nice middle distance 1 mile 6 furlong 3yo heritage handicap before the heart rate goes up with two big ones in a row. The Gimcrack Stakes is a quick group 2 race over 6f open to two year olds, it offers a great chance to spot the top upcoming sprinters of next year. The prize pool for this race tips over £250k with £130k to the winner.
There is no respite as it is Yorkshire racecourse oldest and most famous race up fourth on the card, the Ebor Heritage Handicap. No other handicap race in Europe pays has a bigger prize pool, £300,000, with £178k for the victor. This race card therefore is packed with Europe’s top handicap stayers for the 1 mile 6 furlong run. The race has a similar excitement to the Grand National in that several horses could easily win and rarely does the winner come in at single figure odds.
After half an hour to draw breath the festival draws to a close with two 5 furlong sprints, the Roses stakes for 2 year olds and the Apprentice Stakes for 3yo’s. Sandwiched in between these is a 1 mile 2 furlong 3yo+ handicap.
About the Yorkshire Ebor Festival
York is right up there with the best racecourses in Great Britain. Three of the seasons 31 Group One races are hosted at the racecourse during the Ebor festival making York the third largest racecourse in the UK for prize money issued. Overall the course attracts over 350,000 spectators each year.
The current racecourse in built on an area known as Knavesmire, Knave being Anglo-Saxon for low lying and mire being a swamp like area for grazing cattle. The land was open to common peoples to use for grazing. For this reason the course is still often referred to Kavesmire. The site was also used as the location for the city gallows and used for the hanging of Dick Turpin in the eighteenth century.
Racing in York goes back to the Romans if not even further although it is unknown exactly when York racecourse first hosted races. The official view states the course began life in the 1730’s when racing moved from a nearby flood prone site, Clifton Ings, although unofficial reports suggest racing going back over twenty years earlier. Either way York racecourse has seen racing for a long time.
York rose to fame early on becoming only the second course after Newmarket to devise a formal structured racing programme. The Great Subscription Purses started in the 1750’s, these were a series of flat 4-mile races that for a period in the early 19th century were some of the biggest in the country. This lead to the building of the first stand at York in 1754 and with regular spring and summer meetings and by the 1800’s further stands were built.
The racecourse continued to progress with the Ebor Handicap, first called the Great Ebor Handicap, launching in 1843. To begin with the race was held over the slightly longer distance of 2 miles but reduced to 1m 6f with course changes. The race is not a particular favourite of regular punters, with only four favourites winning in the last 40 years, but is loved by the occasional bettor who likes a few quid each way on an exciting race where anyone could win.
With the growing reputation of the Ebor Handicap and other top racing York developed all the way through the last century now boasting a capacity of over 60,000. The course has acted as a replacement for Royal Ascot during the redevelopment in 2005 and the St Leger in 2006.