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Earliest meeting: Monday 9th June 1755
Final meeting: Thursday 10th September 1863

The County Antrim town of Antrim lies on the banks of Six Mile Water close to Lough Neagh. It is the county town and is located just over 20 miles from Belfast. One of its first race meetings took place on Monday 9th June 1755, the start of a fantastic five day festival of racing, when the £50 Weight for Age Handicap was won by Mr Dougherty’s 5 year old mare which defeated Mr O’Neil’s Red Rose. A titanic battle the next day saw Fearnought get the better of Lord Antrim’s Miss Baker and Piper to land the £50 Purse. On the final day Friday 13thJune 1755 the filles race was won by Captain Archer’s bay filly, defeating both Lord Antrim and Captain Usher’s chosen fillies. Meetings continued on a regular basis, with each festival spread out over 5 or 6 days. On Monday 2nd November 1789 the Antrim Plate was won by Mr Knox’s Mayfly, while the next day the Antrim County Plate went to Mr Richey’s Bachelor. A six day meeting from Monday 3rd to Saturday 8th November 1806 had the Marquis of Donegall as its chief Steward, and the next year the meeting also lasted for a full week in early November. By the middle of the 19th century the cards were less impressive, and one of the last meetings of note took place on Thursday 10th September 1863 when the first race, the Antrim Stakes, saw Romance beat Susan, but the programme then finished with trotting races. Later point to point meetings continued into the 20th century and were held in conjunction with the Killultagh, Old Rock and Chichester Harriers Hunt Club which was established in 1816.
This racecourse is covered in Volume 4 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons

Lord Antrim, Lord Mazareen, Captain Archer

Principal Races Antrim £50 Purse, Antrim Weight for Age Handicap  

Tuesday 10th June 1755
Antrim £50 Weight for Age Prize
1. Fearnought, aged horse owned by Mr O’Neil
2. Miss Baker, aged horse owned by Lord Antrim
3. Piper, bay gelding owned by Mr Brown

The final meeting took place on Thursday 10th September 1863.
Course today Over a 4 mile course on common ground on the edge of the town.
If you have photos, postcards, racecards. badges, newspaper cuttings or book references about the old course, or can provide a photo of how the ground on which the old racecourse stood looks today, then email

Much of the information about this course has been found using internet research and is in the public domain. However, useful research sources have been:-

London Illustrated News

Racing Illustrated 1895-1899

The Sporting & Dramatic Illustrated

Northern Turf History Volumes 1-4 by J.Fairfax-Blakeborough

The Sporting Magazine

A Long Time Gone by Chris Pitt first published in 1996 ISBN 0 900599 89 8

Racing Calendars which were first published in 1727

ISBN 978-0-9957632-0-3

652 pages

774 former courses

ISBN 978-0-9957632-1-0

352 pages

400 former courses

ISBN 978-0-9957632-2-7

180 pages

140 former courses

ISBN 978-0-9957632-3-4

264 pages

235 former courses

Copies of the above books are only available by emailing stating your requirements, method of payment (cheque payable to W.Slusar) or Bank transfer, and the address where the book(s) should be sent.
Download an order form
  Quantity Cost
Volume 1 North of Hatfield £19.99 + £4 postage    
Volume 2 South of Hatfield £14.99 + £3 postage    
Volume 3 Wales & Scotland £9.99 + £3 postage    
Volume 4 Ireland £9.99 + £3 postage    
Volumes 1 - 4 £54.96 + £5 postage    
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