Seoul Race Park

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Seoul Race Park
Seoul Racecourse November Dawn.jpg
Location Gwacheon, Gyeonggi-do, South Korea
Owned by Korea Racing Authority
Date opened September 1, 1989
Course type Left
Official website

Seoul Race Park is a 40,000[1] capacity Korean thoroughbred racetrack in Gwacheon, Gyeonggi-do, South Korea. It is host to many of Korea's most valuable thoroughbred horse races including the Korean Derby and Grand Prix. Seoul Race Park is located next to Seoul Racecourse Park Station on Line 4 of the Seoul Metropolitan Subway. It is operated by the Korea Racing Authority (KRA).

History[edit]

The current site at Gwacheon is the third home of Seoul Race Park. The first was at a track in Sinseol-dong, Dongdaemun-gu, which was in operation from the early 1920s until just after the Korean War. Following the closure of the Sinseol-dong track, a new racetrack was constructed at Ttukseom, on the north bank of the Han River In February 1983, after South Korea was awarded the 1988 Summer Olympics, the KRA was given the task of organising the equestrian events.[2] The Ttukseom Racetrack was inadequate; the KRA acquired a new site south of Seoul in Gwacheon Gyeonggi-do, where the equestrian (except the individual-jumping final) and the riding portion of the modern pentathlon events were held. After the Olympics, the KRA turned the site into a racetrack.[3]

Present[edit]

The first race at the new Seoul Race Park was held on September 1, 1989. The track can accommodate more than 80,000 spectators; in 2003 a second grandstand, "Luckyville", was opened alongside the existing "Happyville". Races are run on an oval artificial sand-based track with a two-furlong home straight.[4]

As of 2011 live thoroughbred racing takes place on Saturdays and Sundays all year, with 12 races each Saturday and 11 each Sunday. On race day, races are also simulcast from the pony-racing track on Jeju Island and the thoroughbred track at Busan-Gyeongnam. Major races at the Seoul Race Park include the Korean Derby in May, the Minister of Agriculture Cup in October, the President's Cup in November and the season-ending Grand Prix in December.

In 2007, the Korean-bred J.S. Hold won the Korean Triple Crown (the Ttukseom Cup, the Korean Derby and the Minister's Cup) at Seoul Race Park. In 2008 the Ttukseom Cup was replaced as the first leg of the Triple Crown by the KRA Cup Mile, which is run at Busan-Gyeongnam Race Park on the first Sunday in April.

In 2009 the champion jockey at Seoul Race Park was Park Tae Jong, who also holds the record for most wins in Korean racing history. The 2009 Korean Derby was won by a filly, Sangseung Ilro, who had previously won the KRA up Mile at Busan-Gyeongnam. At the end of each season, racing fans in Korea can vote for which horses they wish to take part in the traditional season-ending Grand Prix race. In 2009, the American-bred Dongbanui Gangja won the race for the second consecutive year.

Notable Races[edit]

Month Racename Distance Qualification
Grade I
May Korean Derby Dirt 1800m Korean 3yo c&f
Nov. Presidents Cup Dirt 2000m Korean 3yo +
Dec. Grand Prix Dirt 2300m Mixed 3yo +
Grade II
Oct. Minister of FAFF Cup Dirt 2000m Korean 3yo c&f
Grade III
Apr. Ttukseom Cup Dirt 1400m Korean 4yo + 
Jun. SROA Chairman's Trophy Dirt 2000m Korean 4yo + f
Oct. KRA Cup Classic (Handicap) Dirt 2000m Mixed 3yo +
Nov. Breeder's Cup Dirt 1300m Korean 2yo c&f

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 37°26′49″N 127°00′56″E / 37.446925°N 127.015471°E / 37.446925; 127.015471