The official recognition of Brighton as a racecourse took place in 1783 but there are unofficial accounts of it having races conducted by members of the army at a garrison in the town. The Duke of Cambridge organised the first race but then Prince of Wales (George IV) arrived at the town the next year and from there it gained popularity. He managed this by attracting a number of his aristocratic friends who he knew were big betters.
Horseracing led to thedevelopment of the town. When racing, jockeys jumped over sheep pens, and thisled to the concept of hurdles. In 1788, a grand stand was erected but it burnt down on August 23rd 1796. In the 1800s, the place became a playground for the rich but fell down the pecking order after the prince and his friends stopped attending. The railway arrived in Brighton in 1850 and the racecourse became popular again. Renovations were made and a new stand was built. This led to the initiation of the Brighton Cup and it has been running ever since.
The racecourse is in Freshfield Road, East Sussex and is situated on Whitehawk Hill . It sits in 20 acres of countryside and is one mile from the ocean, so it offers great ocean views. The track has a horseshoe look that helps it stand out. It has 18 meeting rooms.
The racecourse has 21 fixtures every year and the major notable event is the 3-day August Festival. The first day focuses on the Brighton Mile Challenge trophy, the second day is all about the Brighton Challenge Cup and the third is reserved for the Ladies Day, a competition for the best dressed lady.
In 2012, Stuart Kittow’s 4-year-old horse won the Brighton Mile Challenge. On Ladies Day, with a fog that brought visibility levels to almost zero, Darryl Holland won the Brighton Challenge cup.