Sandown Racecourse is 25 kms from the Melbourne CBD on the Princes Highway Springvale.
Sandown Racecourse is operated by the Melbourne Racing Club. From 1st January 2012, Sandown Racecourse became known as William Hill Park is the first Victorian racecourse to carry a sponsors name.
The Sandown Racecourse also has a motor racing track on the outside of the racecourse, known as Sandown Raceway.
The Sandown Racecourse had a major upgrade in 1999 and its premier race, the Sandown Cup, was reinvented as the Sandown Classic, with increased prize money and a change from handicap to weight-for-age conditions. A permanent Quarantine Centre at Sandown Racecourse was completed in 1997 and used to house visiting international horses.
Racing commenced at Sandown Racecourse in 1965 and was administered by the Victoria Amateur Turf Club (VATC) which also looked after racing at Caulfield. The Club started a five 5 year plan in 2001 to establish a second turf track at Sandown to be known as Hillside, and the existing track to be renamed Lakeside. The racecourse had an additional 30 metre wide home turn and the main straight widened to 45 metres from its original 30 metres, and the turn leading out of the straight widened from 30 metres to 45 metres.
As part of the plan the Club also changed from the VATC to become the Melbourne Racing Club.
The Lakeside Racecourse is positioned on the inside of the course. When the rail is in the true position and the track is rated good it is possible to lead all the way. The Hillside track generally exhibits little bias, but you often see horses coming from well behind on days when the rail is well out.
The Melbourne Racing Club operates at both Caulfield Racecourse and Sandown Racecourse and holds 60 plus race meetings each year across the two locations, which accounts for almost half of all city racing in Melbourne.
The Sandown Racecourse Hillside track has a circumference of 2,097 metres and straight of 491 metres, whilst the Lakeside track has a circumference of 1,891 metres and straight of 407 metres. Both tracks are made of turf and direction of travel for all races is anti-clockwise.
Sandown Racecourse is a specialist track. Barriers are not that important here as all starts there have a good straight to get your mount into a good position before the first turn. Sandown Racecourse is not really a front runners track as many are run down by horses coming from well back. The average number of horse in race fields is 10.
Midweek and Saturday meetings gates open 11am.
Racing Carnival at Sandown Racecourse:
Sandown Racecourse hosts its racing carnival in the spring time and is held one week after the 4 day Melbourne Racing Carnival at Flemington in November. Sandown's Carnival consists of four group races,
- Group 2 Sandown Classic over 2400 metres
- Group 2 Sandown Guineas over 1600 metres
- Group 3 Sandown Stakes over 1500 metres
- Group 3 Eclipse Stakes over 1800 metres
Sandown Racecourse is available for all types of entertainment functions from Conferences, Trade Shows, Cultural Festivals and Exhibitions and more. The course has a grandstand that can seat up to 8000 people, has undercover outdoor areas, a large multi-purpose room, a range of individual rooms and beautiful gardens featuring well manicured lawns, natural bushes and walkways.
Other facilities include,
- Family days with activities, entertainment and rides for the whole family
- Race Day food & beverage specials
- Numerous Bars and Restaurants
- Full Bookmakers Betting Ring and Tab facilities
Transport To The Track:
By Car. Melways reference 80 D7. The racecourse can be reached by travelling along the Monash Freeway or the Princes Highway to the Springvale Road exit. From there follow the signs and look out for the turn-off to the course. This trip will take you about 30 minutes to get to Sandown along these routes. Free public parking is available at the Centre Car Park on race days.
By Train. Sandown racecourse can be reached in 40 minutes by train from Flinders Street Station in Melbourne from Sandown Park railway station on the Pakenham and the Cranbourne railway lines.
By Bus. Travelling to Sandown Racecourse by bus is available from platform bay 6 at Chadstone Shopping Centre. Take bus route 800 towards Dandenong and alight at stop Corrigan Road and Princes Highway Springvale. The racecourse is directly opposite. This trip will take you approx 45 minutes.
Charter Buses. If travelling as a group to the racecourse, the MRC recommends Nuline Charter. They are a privately-owned business and caters for all suburbs of Victoria.
By Taxi. Travelling by taxi you can be dropped off on Racecourse Drive at the main gate. Leaving the racecourse taxi stands are located out the front of the main gate of the racecourse.
Places to stay which are near the racecourse include,
- Sandown Park Hotel - Located directly opposite the racecourse
- Best Western Sandown Heritage Motor Inn – Located 10 minutes from the racecourse
- Sandown Regency Motel – Located 10 minutes from the racecourse
Cnr Springvale Road & Princes Hwy
PO Box 231
PH: 03 9257 7200
There are many races held at Sandown Racecourse throughout the year with the highlights being the Sandown Stakes and the Sandown Classic which use to be known as the Sandown Cup.
With the majority of meetings at Sandown Racecourse being held on Wednesdays, the Melbourne Racing Club made entry to the Wednesday meetings free to the public.
|Group 1||Group 2||Group 3|
|Sandown Classic||Sandown Stakes|
|Sandown Guineas||Eclipse Stakes|
Sandown Racecourse Barrier Guide
- 1000 metres: This start is located at the end of a long chute off the course proper. There is a straight run of about 600 metres to the home turn. Barriers are not that important here.
- 1200 metres: Situated on the course proper in the back straight of the course. there is a straight run of about 400 metres before a sweeping double bend to the home straight. Inside barriers are a slight advantage.
- 1400 metres: Also in the back straight giving runners a 600 metre straight before the turn. Barriers are of little consequence.
- 1500 metres: This start can be found in a chute off the back straight. Again barriers don't really come into play due to the long 700 metres straight.
- 1600 metres: This barrier is found at the end of the chute in the back straight giving runners a long 800 metre straight run before the turn.
- 2100 metres: This barrier is located in the home straight. There is a good straight run of about 400 metres to the first sweeping double bend. Inside barriers are a slight advantage.
- 2400 metres: This barrier starts in a chute at the top of the home straight. There is a good run straight run of about 700 metres to the first sweeping double bend. Inside barriers are a slight advantage.