Kempton Tips

Best known for National Hunt racing, most notably the King George VI Chase run in December, Kempton Park is one of racing’s more diverse and busy tracks due to it also holding 16 all-weather flat meetings throughout the year. Located just 16 miles from London, Kempton Park is in the leafy and affluent town of Sunbury-on-Thames, steeped in quintessential English charm. Kempton makes up around 232 acres of grass and woodland with two lakes in its center and was first used for racing in 1878.

As well as the main track, there is an all-weather course with floodlights that allow for evening meetings in bad weather and at darker times of the year. The synthetic flat track opened in 2006 and controversially replaced the much beloved Jubilee Course. The Feltham Novices’ Chase takes place on the same day as the King George as part of their Christmas schedule, while the following sees the running of the Desert Orchid Chase, a grade 2 race. At the end of February, Kempton hosts the BetBright Chase while the Sirenia Stakes goes in early September.

Kempton Race Course History

The racecourse came to be after a 19th-century businessman discovered the land of Kempton Manor and Park for sale while he was out enjoying a carriage drive in the countryside. He duly leased the grounds in 1872 and six years later Kempton opened as a racecourse although its first ever race wasn’t held until the 18th July 1878.

The course played an important role in both world wars as, in World War 1, it was used as a transit depot for military vehicles until 1919 when racing resumed at Kempton. Racing didn’t stop at this time, however, but merely relocated to nearby Sandown or an old course at Gatwick where the airport stands today. During the Second World War, Kempton Park was again closed for racing and this time used as a prisoner-of-war camp due to it having a train station on the grounds which allowed for German and Italian soldiers to be transferred in easily. This station is still a feature of the course and today the public can get to Kempton directly from London Waterloo in less than 45 minutes.

Kempton Race Course track configuration

  • The national hunt course is a right-handed triangular circuit of one mile and 5f
  • On the oval course, there is a slight bias towards high drawn numbers
  • The oval all-weather track is the only right-handed all-weather course in the UK and is either 8 or 10 furlongs depending upon the bend

Kempton race track bias

Kempton is flat and oval shaped with two loops. In order to accommodate flat racing throughout the year, it switched to an all-weather Polytrack track in 2006. The national hunt course is a right-handed triangular run of one mile and 5f. Patience usually pays dividends at Kempton, and an inside draw is a big advantage on the round course as there’s a tendency for jockeys to ride hard quite a long way from home.

The inner circuit is used for races over 5f, 9f and 10f is sharp with a finishing straight that is just under 2f. Sprinters are preferred, especially over the shortest distances. The outer course’s turns are more sweeping, and it has a straight of almost 3f. On the oval course, races of 8f have a slight bias towards high drawn numbers.

Kempton race track best trainers

Billed as London’s premier racecourse, Kempton Park has played host to many of the leading equine stars over the years. Names such as Kauto Star and Long Run are two of the more recent icons to have won here, as are legends of the track like Desert Orchid, affectionately known as “Dessie,” who is buried here.

Today’s trainers, wishing to add their charges to the list, work tirelessly all year round to bring the horses to Kempton, but some fare better than others. In recent years, which trainers have the best record here at Kempton?

Kempton’s Top Jump Trainers

  • N J Henderson (28.09% win rate)
  • P F Nicholls (22.58% win rate)
  • Harry Fry 22.22% win rate)
  • A King (18.75% win rate)
  • N A Twiston-Davies (15% win rate)

Kempton’s Top Flat Trainers

  • J H M Gosden (27.13% win rate)
  • Archie Watson (23.62% win rate)
  • R Charlton (18.54% win rate)
  • R Varian (21.52% win rate)
  • Hugo Palmer (18.42% win rate)

Kempton race track best Jockeys

Jockeys work their whole lives for the chance to ride at Kempton, one of England’s most prestigious tracks. A win here can represent the highlight of many riders’ careers like 20 times Champion Jockey, Ireland’s AP McCoy who won the King George Chase here in 2002 aboard Best Mate. Not all jockeys will be remembered as fondly as AP, but those looking to emulate even a fraction of what he achieved would do well to bank a winner at Kempton Park.

Here are the top five Kempton jockey performers over the last three years.

Kempton’s Top Jump Jockeys

  • B J Geraghty (42.11% win rate)
  • Nico de Boinville (25.58% win rate)
  • N D Fehily [Retired 2019] (23.53% win rate)
  • Wayne Hutchinson (22.5% win rate)
  • D A Jacob (21.21% win rate)
  • H Cobden (21.21% win rate)

Kempton’s Top Flat Jockeys

  • James Doyle (27.92% win rate)
  • Andrea Atzeni (26.28% win rate)
  • Jim Crowley (17.92% win rate)
  • R Havlin (16.88% win rate)
  • Oisin Murphy (16.46% win rate)

Kempton racing season

The closest racecourse to central London, Kempton Park is home to the Christmas jumping showpiece, the King George VI Chase, which is run on Boxing Day—what the British call December 26—and is a Grade 1 National Hunt chase open to horses aged four years and up. The race was first run in February 1937 and goes over a distance of three miles. It is the second-most important steeplechase in England and features on the same card as the Grade 1 Christmas Hurdle and Feltham Novices’ Chase, which goes a day later.

As well as hosting 16 flat racing fixtures on a Polytrack synthetic surface, the most significant races at Kempton are over the jumps and include January’s Lanzarote Hurdle and, a month later, the three-mile BetBright Chase that has, in the past, been won by the legendary Desert Orchid and Rough Quest. Today, all of Kempton’s historic flat races that were once ridden over the Jubilee Course have been transferred to the all-weather including the Easter Stakes, Magnolia Stakes, and Rosebery Handicap.

Kempton race track stakes and Graded Stakes calendar for 2019

Friday 4th January 2019 – Flat – Afternoon – AWT

Saturday 5th January 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Wednesday 9th January 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Saturday 12th January 2019 – Lanzarote Hurdle – Jump – Afternoon – Turf

Tuesday 15th January 2019 – Flat – AWT – Floodlit

Wednesday 16th January 2019 – Flat – AWT – Floodlit

Friday 18th January 2019 – Flat – AWT – Floodlit

Wednesday 23rd January 2019 – Flat – AWT – Floodlit

Monday 28th January 2019 – Jump – Turf – Afternoon

Saturday 2nd February 2019 – Flat – AWT – Floodlit

Wednesday 6th February 2019 – Flat – AWT – Afternoon

Friday 8th February 2019 – Jump – Turf – Afternoon

Wednesday 13th February 2019 – Flat – AWT – Floodlit

Saturday 16th February 2019 – Flat – AWT – Floodlit

Saturday 23rd February 2019 – BetBright Chase – Jump – Turf – Afternoon

Wednesday 27th February 2019 – Flat – AWT – Floodlit

Wednesday 6th March 2019 – Flat – AWT – Floodlit

Saturday 9th March 2019 – Flat – AWT- Floodlit

Monday 11th March 2019 – Flat – AWT – Floodlit

Wednesday 13th March 2019 – Flat – AWT – Floodlit

Saturday 16th March 2019 – Jump – Turf – Afternoon

Saturday 23rd March 2019 – Flat – AWT – Floodlit

Wednesday 27th March 2019 – Flat – AWT – Floodlit

Saturday 30th March 2019 – Rosebery Handicap – Flat – AWT -Afternoon

Wednesday 3rd April 2019 – Flat – AWT – Floodlit

Wednesday 10th April 2019 – Flat – AWT – Floodlit

Friday 12th April 2019 – Flat – AWT- Floodlit

Saturday 20th April 2019 – Flat – AWT – Afternoon

Thursday – 25th April 2019 – Jump – Turf – Evening

Monday 6th May 2019 – Jump – Turf – Afternoon

Monday 13th May 2019 – Jump – Turf – Afternoon

Wednesday 22nd May 2019 – Flat – AWT – Evening

Wednesday 5th June 2019 – Flat – Evening – AWT

Wednesday 12th June 2019 – Flat – Evening – AWT

Wednesday 26th June 2019 – Flat – Evening – AWT

Wednesday 3rd July 2019 – Flat – Evening – AWT

Wednesday 10th July 2019 – Flat – Evening – AWT

Monday 5th August 2019 – Flat – Afternoon – AWT

Wednesday 7th August 2019 – Flat – Evening – AWT

Wednesday 14th August 2019 – Flat – Evening – AWT

Tuesday 20th August 2019 – Flat – Afternoon – AWT

Wednesday 21st August 2019 – Flat – Evening – AWT

Wednesday 28th August 2019 – Flat – Evening – AWT

Tuesday 3rd September 2019 -Flat – Evening – Turf

Friday 6th September 2019 – Flat – Evening – AWT

Saturday 7th September 2019 – Sirenia Stakes – Flat – Afternoon – AWT

Wednesday 11th September 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Monday 16th September 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Monday 23rd September 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Wednesday 25th September 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Tuesday 1st October 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Wednesday 2nd October 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Wednesday 9th October 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Thursday 10th October 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Tuesday 15th October 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Wednesday 16th October 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Sunday 20th October 2019 – Jump – Afternoon – Turf

Tuesday 22nd October 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Wednesday 23rd October 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Monday 28th October 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Wednesday 30th October 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Thursday 31st October 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Monday 4th November 2019 – Flat – Afternoon – AWT

Tuesday 5th November 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Wednesday 6th November 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Monday 11th November 2019 – Jump – Afternoon – Turf

Tuesday 19th November 2019 – Flat – Afternoon – AWT

Wednesday 20th November 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Monday 25th November 2019 – Jump – Afternoon – Turf

Wednesday 27th November 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Friday 29th November 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Wednesday 4th December 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Wednesday 11th December 2019 – Flat – Floodlit – AWT

Thursday 26th December 2019 – King George VI Chase – Jump – Afternoon – Turf

Friday 27th December 2019 – Feltham Novices’ Chase – Jump – Afternoon – Turf

Kempton Race Course address and website

Kempton Park Racecourse, Staines Road,
East Sunbury on Thames, Middlesex, TW16 5AQ, United Kingdom
https://www.thejockeyclub.co.uk/kempton/