| Horse Racetrack
|| Newbridge, Co. Kildare, Ireland
| Race type
|| Thoroughbred Flat
| Principal Races
| Irish 1,000 Guineas (G1)
| Irish 2,000 Guineas (G1)
| Irish Derby (G1)
| Irish Oaks (G1)
| Irish St. Leger (G1)
The Curragh Racecourse
, usually abbreviated to The Curragh
, is Ireland's most important Thoroughbred
The Thoroughbred is a horse breed best known for its use in horse racing. Although the word thoroughbred is sometimes used to refer to any breed of purebred horse, it technically refers only to the Thoroughbred breed...
A race track is a purpose-built facility for racing of animals , automobiles, motorcycles or athletes. A race track may also feature grandstands or concourses. Some motorsport tracks are called speedways.A racetrack is a permanent facility or building...
. It is situated on the Curragh plain near Newbridge
The earliest known mention of Newbridge was by traveller and bookseller John Dunton in 1698, though he does not refer to any settlement other than at Ballymany....
, County Kildare
County Kildare is a county in Ireland. It is part of the Mid-East Region and is also located in the province of Leinster. It is named after the town of Kildare. Kildare County Council is the local authority for the county...
Ireland , described as the Republic of Ireland , is a sovereign state in Europe occupying approximately five-sixths of the island of the same name. Its capital is Dublin. Ireland, which had a population of 4.58 million in 2011, is a constitutional republic governed as a parliamentary democracy,...
The name "Curragh" comes from the Irish (Gaeilge)
Irish , also known as Irish Gaelic, is a Goidelic language of the Indo-European language family, originating in Ireland and historically spoken by the Irish people. Irish is now spoken as a first language by a minority of Irish people, as well as being a second language of a larger proportion of...
, meaning "racecourse". The first recorded race on the plain took place in 1727, but it was used for races before then. The first Derby was held in 1866, and in 1868 the Curragh was officially declared a horse racing and training facility by act of parliament.
The course is right-handed, about two miles long and horseshoe-shaped. Races up to six furlongs are run on a straight course. Additionally there are several training facilities on the site.
The Curragh offers the highest purses and highest quality level of Flat racing
Flat racing is a form of Thoroughbred horse racing which is run over a level track at a predetermined distance. It differs from steeplechase racing which is run over hurdles...
in Ireland. In 2007, 10 of Ireland's 12 Group One races will be held at the track.
All 5 Irish classics are run at The Curragh.
- Irish 1,000 Guineas
- Irish 2,000 Guineas
- Irish Derby
The Irish Derby is a Group 1 flat horse race in Ireland open to three-year-old thoroughbred colts and fillies. It is run at the Curragh over a distance of 1 mile and 4 furlongs , and it is scheduled to take place each year in late June or early July.It is Ireland's equivalent of the Epsom Derby,...
- Irish Oaks
The Irish Oaks is a Group 1 flat horse race in Ireland open to three-year-old thoroughbred fillies. It is run at the Curragh over a distance of 1 mile and 4 furlongs , and it is scheduled to take place each year in July....
- Irish St. Leger
- See also: List of Irish flat horse races
Curragh Racecourse railway station opened in 1875, but finally closed on 7 March 1977.