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Earliest meeting: Wednesday 27th April 1836
Final meeting: April 1928
There is a huge overlap between Bogside races and those specifically billed as ‘Eglinton Park’. Some evidence, contained in Eglinton Park Estate papers, indicates that racing was taking place on the estate as early as 1636. Eighty subscribers were listed donating a massive sum of £3923 on 28th July 1636 to ensure that the races were able to be staged annually, while Lord Alexander, the then Earl of Eglinton, along with Lord Montgomerie donated a Silver Cup. The four mile course, marked out by eight half mile posts, extended from Irvine Moor to Bartonholme. James Whyte’s History of the British Turf noted that racing later took place at Eglintoun (Eglinton) Park in Kilwinning, North Ayrshire, in 1836 when a two day meeting was held between Wednesday 27th and Thursday 28th April. That meeting opened with the Trial Stakes which was won by Vingt’-un for Mr Lamb, while the Irvine Cup saw Captain Houston’s Cognovit beat Sir J Boswell’s Charlie. The course was an oval of a mile and 7 furlongs in circumference, with a straight of 4 furlongs. The next year the meeting was extended to three days, starting on Wednesday 26th April with the prestigious Irvine Cup which was claimed by Mr Fairlie’s Zohrab.  A glorious meeting was arranged in 1839 to coincide with the famous Eglinton Medieval Jousting Tournament, the programme included such sponsored events as the W.J.Gilmour Cragnullar Stakes and the Sir F Johnstone Oebble Stakes. Meetings continued, principally for gentlemen riders, until 1852, after which Bogside and Eglinton Park ceased racing for some years as Lord Eglinton turned his interest from racing to his duties as Lord Lieutenant of Ireland. Racing returned in 1867 when the Eglinton Hunt organised the first Scottish Grand National, run over 3 miles, which was won by The Elk owned by the Duke of Hamilton. Bogside races continued and even after Eglinton Park was sold in 1924 there were bona fide meetings for the next 3 years until 1928.

This racecourse is covered in Volume 3 of Racecourses Here Today and Gone Tomorrow. Ordering details shown below.
Local Patrons

Earl of Eglintoun; Lord Kelbourn; Lord Archibald Seymour; Sir F Johnstone; W F Gilmour; Grant Macdowall

Principal Races Earl of Eglinton Irvine Cup, Cragnullar Stakes, Atlanta Challenge

Wednesday 26th to Friday 28th April 1837

The Irvine Cup over 1 ½ miles
1. Zohrab owned by Mr Fairlie
2. Shamrock owned by Lord Rosslyn
3. The Potentate owned by Lord Eglinton

The All-Aged Stakes over 2 miles
1. Zohrab owned by Mr Fairlie
2. Unnamed colt by Albany owned by Lord Kelburne

The Eglinton Free Handicap Stakes over 1 ½ miles
1. Zohrab owned by Mr Fairlie
2. Bamfylde owned by Sir F.Johnstone
3. Ben Brace owned by Lord Rosslyn

Thursday 6th April 1899

Eglinton Welter Plate over a mile
1. Rosario owned by Mr J Burns
2. Rodowna owned by Mr C J Cunningham
3. Willowbiter owned by Mr W Chatterton

Bogside Trial Plate over 5 furlongs
1. Dewberry owned by Mr T Burns
2. Topaz owned by Mr D Buchanan
3. Duplication owned by Mr J Burns

Irvine Town Plate over a mile and a half
1. Dowf owned by The Duke of Montrose
2. Glowberry owned by Mr C J Wilmot-Sitwell
3. Double Daisy owned by Mr G G Tod

Whyte records the1839 races as:-
Eglintoun Trial Stakes over 4 furlongs;
Earl of Eglintoun Irvine Cup over a mile;
The Welter Stakes over a mile;
W.J.Gilmour Cragnullar Stakes over a mile and a half;
Sir F Johnstone Oebble Stakes over a mile;
The Atlanta Challenge Whip over 2 furlongs;
The Grant Macdowall Luidon Stakes over a mile;
Grant Macdowall Amdilly Handicap Stakes over 4 furlongs;

The last bona fide meeting held under the name of Eglinton Hunt was in April 1928.

Course today An oval one mile 7 furlong course on Eglinton Park.
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

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