Christmas Festival Kempton Park

Photo: @mossfoto

Horse Racing

Christmas Festival at Kempton Park ~ Thursday 26 & Friday 27 December

🏇 2024 draws to a close with the Ladbrokes Christmas Festival at Kempton Park Racecourse and a two-day jumps extravaganza.  

🎟️ Tickets are on sale here.

🎫 Hospitality options are available.  🖊️ Complete the short form here (also below ⤵️) OR 📞 call +44 (0)7931 169180 for package/price info. 

Boasting 12 top quality races over two days, including the famous ‘King George’, the Christmas Festival at Kempton Park is one of the highlights of the National Hunt season taking place at the historic racecourse in Surrey just 16 miles from central London.  


Day one is headlined by the race that underpins the entire festival – The King George VI Steeple Chase.  The Grade 1 race first ran in 1937 and was named after the newly crowned king.  It was won that year by Southern Hero who, to date, remains the oldest winner of the race at 12 years old.

The King George VI Chase race draws incredible talent as horses, jockeys and trainers compete to leave a permanent mark in racing history and claim one its most prestigious prizes.  The race is synonymous with some of the most famous names in racing with Arkle, Pendil, Wayward Lad and Best Mate all taking their place on the roll of honour; not to mention equine legends Desert Orchid (and three-time winner of the race) and Kauto Star (a five-time winner) who each have a statue in their memory at the course. 


Last year the King George served up a race for the ages (watch it in full below)Hewick, expertly guided by jockey Gavin Sheehan, was in last place for large parts of the race.  But the 12-1 chance came from a different postcode to snatch victory, stunning Bravemansgame (defending his 2022 King George title) and Allaho who were battling it out for the first prize of £142,000.  This after Shiskin had fallen at the second last, when for all the world it had looked like he was about to mount a victorious surge for the line

Earlier on Boxing Day, Nicky Henderson’s superstar hurdler Constitution Hill cruised to an effortless win to retain the Christmas Hurdle he won in 2022.  And French raider Il Est Francais had the crowd drooling on his British debut with a sublime 11-length triumph in the first of the three Grade 1 races on the day, the Kauto Star Novices’ Chase. 


Day two is Desert Orchid Chase DayNamed after the charismatic grey who made Kempton Park his own, the day is packed full of quality racing.  This includes the Mare’s Handicap Hurdle Race, the Wayward Lad Novices’ Steeple Chase and, of course, The Desert Orchid Chase. 

In 2023, Editeur Du Gite – trained by Gary Moore and ridden by Niall Houlihan – made it back-to-back wins in the Desert Orchid Chase. 


🎟️ Tickets are on sale via the ‘Get Tickets’ link. 

🎫 Hospitality options are available.  🖊️ Complete the short form below (also below ⤵️) OR 📞 call +44 (0)7931 169180 for package/price info. 

Day 1 ~ 26 December ~ King George VI Chase Day timings

Approximate timings, subject to change closer to raceday.

🗝️ Gates open: 10.00am.

🕔🏇 First race: 12.40pm ~ King George VI Chase: 3.05pm ~ Last race: 3.40pm. 

Day 2 ~ 27 December ~ Desert Orchid Chase Day timings

Approximate timings, subject to change closer to raceday.

🗝️ Gates open: 10.30am.

🏇🕔 First race: 12.45pm ~ The Desert Orchid Chase: 2.30pm ~ Last race: 3.40pm. 

🚊🚗 Travel tips: Kempton Park Racecourse is located just 16 miles from the city and 6 miles from Heathrow Airport.  It is easily accessible by car.  For the Christmas Festival you can book parking in advance on-site at the same time as purchasing a ticket. 

There is also free parking in the centre of the course.  This is accessible via Gate 6 on the A308 (Staines Road East).  Note: course crossings close 30 minutes before racing starts and re-open 30 minutes after the last race.  There is also a free Park & Ride service from the BP site on Cadbury Road.  Use TW16 7LN for your Sat Nav.  This is approximately ten minutes from the racecourse with buses running all morning and then re-commencing after the last race.


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