15 February 2019
The £80,000 National Spirit Hurdle brings our Sussex track some of the finest talent in National Hunt, and this year on February 24, we're celebrating our 54th year!
With the eagerly-awaited National Spirit Hurdle just days away, we're kicking off with 10 interesting facts surrounding the prestigious raceday...
1. The National Spirit Hurdle is named after the dual Champion Hurdle Winner, National Spirit - a regular Fontwell runner in the 1940's.
2. The inaugural running of the National Spirit Hurdle in 1965 was won by Salmon Spray.
3. The National Spirit Hurdle is widely regarded as a trial for the World Hurdle at Cheltenham!
4. Comedy of Errors was another notable Fontwell winner (he went on to win the Champion Hurdle, twice!)
5. In 2001, Baracouda won The National Spirit Hurdle before going on to win two World Hurdle crowns for Trainer, Francois Doumen!
6. Back in 2006, Alan King's My Way De Solzen stormed success in The National Spirit before lifting the World Hurdle crown the following month.
7. The National Spirit Hurdle is regarded as one of the leading hurdle contests of the entire National Hunt season!
8. Lough Derg won back-to-back renewals of The National Spirit Hurdle for David Pipe in 2008 and 2009
9. Paul Nicholls has won 3 of the last 5 renewals of this prestigious race with Celestial Halo in 2011, Prospect Wells in 2013 and Old Guard in 2018!
10. Vagador has won The National Spirit Hurdle twice... once in 1988 and once in 1990!
...So there you go! Now you can show off your expert knowledge on one of the biggest National Hunt contests when you join us on the big day!
Book tickets, here!