WHEN it comes to Flat racing in particular, Yorkshire is the Northern Powerhouse.
The prestige of meetings like this week’s Ebor festival, which comes under starter’s orders tomorrow, is matched by the high-profile successes of racehorses trained here and luminaries such as Middleham’s Mark Johnston as he becomes the country’s winning-most handler.
Yet, while Doncaster and, of course, York are home to the major meetings, the area’s seven smaller tracks are reaping the rewards. A new stand is being opened at Thirsk and now plans have been unveiled for a new £4.8m grandstand at Beverley, the largest single investment in the racecourse’s long history. With one million spectators attending race meetings in Yorkshire each year, and the industry said to be worth £230m to the area’s economy, it’s an odds-on certainty that crowds will increase still further thanks to quality racing on the track – and fine food and fashion off it.