Top Races

Proud to host Scotland’s top races

Ayr Racecourse is not only home to Scotland’s two biggest Festivals – the Coral Scottish Grand National Festival and the Ayr Gold Cup Festival – but also hosts all of Scotland’s top races including its only Group race and several Listed races. There are many outstanding contests throughout the year at Ayr under both codes – jumps and Flat.

The highlight of the jumps season is the Coral Scottish Grand National Festival with the feature the Coral Scottish Grand National.

The latest renewal of this famous and historic race featured a win for Irish trainer Willie Mullins which all but clinched the British  Trainer’s title for an Ireland based yard for the first time since the 1950s. Mullins took Ayr’s biggest jumps race with Macdermott, ridden by nephew Danny Mullins, with Toby Lawes’ Surrey Quest running a gallant race to be beaten a nose into second place. Jamie Snowden’s Git Maker finished third with Mullins’ other runners, Klarc Kent, Ontheropes and Spanish Harlem finishing 4th, 5th and 6th.

This is the fourth biggest race in terms of betting turnover in the country and is regularly watched by a television audience of in excess of a million viewers on the main ITV channel.

Also on the Scottish Grand National Saturday card is the £100,000 Scottish Champion Hurdle which was won in 2024 by Alan King’s Favour And Fortune from Willie Mullins’ Bialystok in second and Ewan Whillans’ Cracking Rhapsody in third.

Scotland’s biggest and richest Flat meeting is the Virgin Bet Ayr Gold Cup Festival held every September with the £200,000 Gold Cup the feature race over the straight 6 furlongs on one of the best day’s racing of the whole year.

Veteran jockey Joe Fanning won the race for the first time in 2024 when he partnered Significantly to victory for Julie Camacho with the Scottish trained Gweedore finishing third for Galashiels based Katie Scott.

Other Flat highlights at the track include Scotland’s only Group race, the Group 3 Firth Of Clyde Stakes run at the Gold Cup meeting and the Listed Rothesay Stakes for fillies run in mid-May and won in 2023 by subsequent Group 1 winner Al Husn, trained by Roger Varian and ridden by Jim Crowley.

Ayr Racecourse Top Races

Explore some of our top races below
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The Kilkerran Cup Handicap (Class 2)

One of the longest contested trophies at the track. The Class 2 1m 2f is always a competitive race that has been won by top handicappers over the years.
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The Ayr Gold Cup (Heritage Handicap)

The Ayr Gold Cup is the most famous and richest Flat race run in Scotland and a tremendous spectacle to watch with up to 25 runners fanned across the track and speeding down the six furlong home straight at Ayr.
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The Doonside Cup (Class 1) (Listed Race)

This famous race run over 1m 2f is one of the best middle distance Listed races in the north and is always well contested by horses from some of the leading stables in the country.
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The EBF British Stallions Harry Rosebery Stakes (Class 1) (Listed Race)

A long standing Ayr highlight the Harry Rosebery Stakes is a five furlong dash for two year olds and is run on Ladies Day, the middle day of the Ayr Gold Cup Festival.

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The Arran Scottish Fillies Sprint Stakes (Class1) (Listed Race)

First introduced in 2018, this Listed five and a half furlong sprint has quickly established itself as one of the highlights of the Ayr Gold Cup Festival and like the Harry Rosebery Stakes is run on Ladies Day.
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The Firth Of Clyde Stakes (Class1) (Group 3)

This is Scotland’s only Group race and is run over the straight six furlongs for two year-old fillies and regularly attracts a good field of horses from some of the leading yards in the land.
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Coral Scottish Grand National (Class1) (Grade 3)

The most prestigious race of the Scottish jumps calendar and one that is without doubt one of the very best long distance chases in the world.
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CPMS Novices’ Champion Handicap Chase (Class 2)

Introduced in 2018 this valuable race is now very much part and parcel of Coral Scottish Grand National Saturday.
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Coral Scottish Champion Hurdle (Class1) (Grade2)

The main supporting race on the card to the Coral Scottish Grand National this is one of the most exciting handicap hurdles in the racing calendar.

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Jordan Electrics Ltd Future Champion Chase (Class 1) (Grade2)

Datsalrightgino became the latest winner of this contest in 2023 making the long trip from Lambourn a successful one for trainer Jamie Snowden and jockey Gavin Sheehan.
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Hillhouse Quarry Handicap Chase (Class1)

Hillhouse Quarry are the longest running sponsors at Ayr Racecourse with their support of the track going back 30 years and this two and a half mile chase is the feature race on the Friday of the Coral Scottish Grand National Festival.
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Scotty Brand Handicap Chase (Class1)

Scotty Brand are another longstanding sponsor at Ayr and company owner Ronnie Bartlett is a great supporter of the sport having owned some great horses over the years.
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The Irish Stallion Farms EBF Land O’Burns Fillies’ Stakes (Class1) (Listed Race)

Traditionally this Listed contest is the fastest race run at Ayr and Look Busy holds the five furlong course record at the track with her 2008 win here with a time of 55.68 seconds.
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Tennent’s British Stallion Studs EBF Rothesay Stakes (Class1) (Listed Race)

This 1m 2f race for fillies and mares aged four years and upwards was first run in 2016 and in 2022 we saw a really high class filly My Astra win in eyecatching style.
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