Leopardstown Racecourse Guide

Leopardstown is the main dual purpose racecourse in Ireland hosting 13 Grade 1 races over jumps and two Group 1 races on the flat. Its location just 8km south of Dublin City Centre has made it one of the most popular tracks in the country with tourists and the high quality standard of racing here year round only adds to its popularity.

Amazingly, it is the only course located in the capital and runs around a stunning 18 hole parkland golf course, which is available to play any day outside of racing. Aside from racing, the Leopardstown course is known for its on-course entertainment with many concerts and comedy gigs taking place for patrons at the end of meetings.

The course is serviced by Dublin's light rail Luas system, which leaves from the city centre and stops at Sandyford, which is just 10-minutes walk from the course. The trip itself takes 20-minutes and a complimentary shuttle service is in operation from the stop on the day of racing. Dublin bus also service the course on race days.

Map

Swap Start/End

Ticket Prices

General Admission prices for the course are €15 for Adults, €10 for OAPs and Students, and free for children under the age of 16.

Prices vary for special meetings, such as Irish Champions weekend, and these are available on the course website closer to the date.

The Course

Leopardstown, in general, is a wide open left handed track about 1m 3/4s in circumference, which rides very fair and is mostly flat (bar a small rise coming off the home turn).

The Chase course is regarded as easier than the inner hurdles course, although the three fences that are placed tactically down the back straight are very close together and can catch plenty of horses out who do not meet them on a good stride. There are rarely any hard luck stories on the chase track, although there is a very short home straight after turning an easy final bend.

The hurdles course is much sharper and provides a much greater test of the tactical speed of a horse and requires a lot less getting the trip than its chase counterpart. It rides quite differently to the outer course and it pays to be much handier especially when there are large fields in the big handicaps at the course.

As a flat course, Leopardstown is a lot stiffer than people think, as horses can start the sprint for home a long way from the line due to the wide spaces on the track. There is a gradually increasing rise on the course, which can find horses out, especially on the outer course where the straight is slightly longer, and there is also a slight bend at the beginning, which seems to come a bit too quickly for some.

Major Meetings at Leopardstown

Leopardstown hosts a total of 23 meetings throughout the calendar with the highlight of the flat racing being the first day of Irish Champions Weekend in September as the featured Irish Champion Stakes is rated as one of the best in the world. Over jumps the Christmas Festival from Stephens Day has seven Grade 1's and attracts some of the largest crowds in Europe to the track. It is also the home of the Irish Champion Hurdle in January and the Hennessy Gold Cup in February.

Dining and Hospitality

The Grandstand of the course contains three floors of bars and restaurants available to all patrons. There is a Sports Lounge so you miss no sporting events while watching the racing. There is also the Champions Cafe bar and the Leopardstown Pavillion, providing food, drink and entertainment to all patrons on race days.

Leopardstown provides amazing facilities and offers for both large and small groups. Full details and pricing can be obtained from the course website.