We understand that there are a lot of things to consider when planning a day at the races, that’s why we have outlined a few suggestions below to help you plan your visit.
What to Wear
We appreciate, as a summer racecourse, that it’s always important to feel comfortable. At Ripon, we only ask racegoers to follow a dress code in our Club Enclosure and we do ask that customers dress respectably…
… Racegoers of all ages are encouraged to dress smartly in the Club Enclosure. We ask that gentlemen wear a collared shirt and smart trousers. Smart jeans (no rips, tears or fraying) are permitted but t-shirts, sportswear and trainers are not acceptable. Please take the opportunity to dress up for the occasion.
Ladies please bear in mind that the day will involve a lot of walking and often over grass, so give footwear plenty of consideration. There are regular weather updates on the homepage leading up to the raceday which will help in choosing attire for the day. Gentlemen may choose to wear a jacket, collared shirt, smart trousers and formal shoes to complete the look.
Paddock / Course Enclosure
There is no formal dress code for these areas but we do ask that people still dress in a manner of taste and decency. We appreciate the weather might (fingers crossed!) be warm, therefore we do not enforce any form of dress code in either the Paddock or Course. Please note bare chests are not acceptable and although we do allow fancy dress, please make sure your ‘outfit’ is not offensive to other race goers.
For many ladies dressing up is a major part of the race day experience, with Ladies Day being a great chance to really glam up.
On Ladies Day, we hope that ladies will dress as is traditional for ladies day meetings; in smart attire and hats. The ‘Best Dressed Lady’ wins a unique prize.
You will need cash for the bookmakers; some take a minimum bet of £5, but most and our betting operators Ripon Bet will take bets as small as £2. There are two ATM cash machines on site, one outside our sweet shop and the other located in the Club Enclosure hall next to the lift. Please note there is a small withdrawal fee, so it’s always best to bring what you need with you. It is advisable to set a budget so that you don’t overspend on the day.
Racecards can be purchased as soon as you enter the racecourse for £2.50 and these give a detailed breakdown of the day’s action (Club Enclosure ticket holders get the racecard for free when entering the course). If you want to read up before your visit and get some background knowledge and tips just go to the sports pages in a national newspaper or read the Racing Post.
It’s a good idea to bring a camera, and take plenty of photos to remember the great experience but please remove any flash as it could upset the horses. All photography taken on site cannot be published without approval from the race company. We have annual photography competitions, so please keep an eye on the homepage for details on how to enter and our fabulous prizes. If you are interested in contacting our official photographer Louise Pollard, please visit her website www.louisepollard.co.uk.
Where to eat and drink
At Ripon Races we have a range of refreshment options for all parties…
…From full dining if you’ve pre-booked with our hospitality team to on-site bars, restaurants and mobile concessions.
A race meeting is a full day experience so food will have to be considered at some point.
We have lots to choose from and all at reasonable prices, whether you would like a hog roast sandwich or a good old classic burger and chips from our on-site kiosks. We are well known for our wonderful traditional fish ‘n’ chip shop and have introduced what we class as the perfect light summers lunch in our Silks & Saddles Bar.
If you fancy treating yourself to some lovely fresh seafood with a glass of bubbly, head over to our Champagne & Seafood Bar.
If you would like to have a pre booked seated meal our, Club Dining Room can cater for tables of up to 10 guests , with options from a lovely roast to a three course meal. We advise pre-booking your table which can also be reserved for the day from £5 per person. For more details on Dining at Ripon please visit our dedicated page.
Drinking wise we have lots of options including our new Theakstons Terrace Bar, where we are serving ‘real ale’ for the first time here at Ripon. Enjoy a nice pint of Masham’s finest from the new terraced area and now you can enjoy a drink at Ripon at your own leisure with our new on course drinking policy.
All bars will close half an hour after the last race and no persons under 18 years of age will be served or allowed to consume alcohol on the premises. We do encourage racegoers to drink responsibly, make use of the free water available in all of our bars and support the ‘Drink Aware’ campaign currently in place through the Racecourse Association and Visit England.
Bringing your own food and drink
We allow racegoers to bring their own picnics into both the Course and Paddock Enclosures. Picnics are particularly popular on our family days and bringing your own picnic can be a fun part of the day, often making your visit to us more affordable.
A small amount of alcohol (4 cans or the equivalent per person, strictly no glass) is permitted alongside picnics in the Course Enclosure ONLY. Any alcohol attempted to be brought into the Club or Paddock Enclosure will be confiscated on entry. Bottled soft drinks are permitted to be brought into all enclosures but the bottle must be sealed. Please note random checks will take place at the management’s discretion.
Where to stay
We know that often a trip to the races could involve searching for local accommodation. Please below find a useful list
of local places we would recommend in order of distance from the Racecourse.
The Old Deanery | +44 (0) 1765 600003| www.theolddeanery.co.uk
Approx distance: 3 mins / 1.0 miles
The Royal Oak | +44 (0) 1765 602284| www.royaloakripon.co.uk
Approx distance: 3 mins / 1.0 miles
Ripon Spa Hotel | +44 (0) 1765 602172 | www.riponspa.com
Approx distance: 6 mins / 1.6 miles
The Unicorn | +44 (0) 1765 643410
Approx distance: 6 mins / 1.8 miles
The Old Coach House | +44 7912 632296 | www.oldcoachhouse.info
Approx distance: 15 mins / 5.8 miles
Crown Hotel | +44 (0) 1423 322328 | www.crownboroughbridge.co.uk
Approx distance: 16 mins / 5.9 miles
The Boars Head | +44 (0) 1423 771888 | www.boarsheadripley.co.uk
Approx distance: 14 mins / 8.0 miles
Rockcliffe Hall | +44 (0) 1325 729999 | www.rockliffehall.com
Approx distance: 45 mins / 35 miles