The Curragh Racecourse

DUBLIN, IRELAND - MAY 25: A race offical adjusts barrier numbers during the 1000 Guineas day at Curragh Racecourse on May 25, 2008 in Curragh, Ireland. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)The Curragh Racecourse is the home to Irish flat racing. It hosts all five of the Irish Classics, as well as the majority of other Irish Group 1 races. Usually referred to just as “The Curragh”, it is located on the Curragh plain near Newbridge in County Kildare.

The Curragh track is a horseshoe-shaped, two-mile circuit, with a run in of three furlongs and an uphill finish. The five and six furlongs are straight. For one-mile races like the Irish 1000 Guineas, there is an adjoining chute into a six-furlong sprint track.

The Curragh Racecourse underwent a €100 million redevelopment, with construction of a new grandstand and of a hotel due to continue up to 2009. Already, a new ring road at the back of the grandstand – sponsored by thoroughbred owners John Magnier, Michael Tabor and Derrick Smith – has been opened. Curragh management has staggered the redevelopment project to ensure that it won’t interfere with any of the scheduled races.

For the Irish 1000 Guineas, the Curragh Racecourse offers three categories of admission – general grandstand admission, access to the top floor of the grandstand (known as the Premier Level) without reserved seating and Premier Level access with seating. All areas of the course are accessible by wheelchair, and a viewing area for disabled spectators is located alongside the Parade Ring, just past the winning post.

See 2009 Irish 1000 Guineas tickets for ticket prices and booking information.

Curragh Racecourse Restaurants

As well as a large number of bars and fast-food or snack outlets, the Curragh Racecourse includes:

  • the Horseshoe Restaurant on the first floor of the grandstand, for fine dining in two sittings, at 12.00pm and 2.30pm
  • the Champagne Bar and Bistro, beside the Parade Ring, for fine dining and champagne
  • the informal Silks Self Service restaurant, serving hot meals and snacks, in the Tote Hall
  • Dan Donnelly’s Diner, for quality fast food and baguettes, in the West End Stand
  • a Weeping Thaiger outlet, which serves Thai food, Haagen Daz ice cream and coffees, in the Tote Hall

Private Suites

For corporate entertaining, the Curragh provides:

  • the Derby Club Room, catering for up to 160 seated guests or 200 guests with a buffet-style lunch
  • the St. Leger Suite, for up to 100 guests and serving buffet lunch only
  • a range of eight glass-fronted Panoramic Suites, accommodating from 10 to 35 guests

Some of the Panoramic Suites interconnect and can be joined to cater for up to either 60 or 70 guests. For larger groups of corporate guests, specially tailored marquees can be provided.

See Irish 1000 Guineas packages for race-day packages available at Curragh.

Whatever you do, don’t miss the Irish 1000 Guineas, when the top thoroughbred fillies go head to head at the Curragh Racecourse.