Gauteng Tourist AttractionsThe Turffontein Race Course
In Johannesburg when you speak about ‘going to the races’ you’re usually referring to spending a day watching horses race at the Turffontein race track, one of the oldest horse racing venues in South Africa, built in 1887.
Where? 14 Turf Club Street, Turffontein 2190, Johannesburg
How? Call +27 (0)11 681-1500
How much? Watch the press for details
Set in the southern suburbs of Johannesburg, Turffontein is easy to get to from the M2 highway, has plenty of parking and some good food to boot, so a day at the races is generally a thoroughly enjoyable affair - if you don’t lose too much after hedging your bets.
The laydown on the racetrack: Turffontein has a 1200m straight course that joins the round course at about the 800m mark. It’s regarded as one of the stiffest tracks in the country due to a steady climb from about the 1200m to the final turn, which means that horses racing from well off the pace actually hold every chance.
Turffontein is also a night racing venue, after Newmarket Racecourse in Johannesburg was sold to local businessmen in early 2007. Since then Turffontein has undergone a major refurbishment, including the installation of floodlights, renewing the existing track side facilities and opening a sports bar.
Horse racing has a huge following in South Africa and the history of racing can be traced back to as early as 1797, whilst the first race club meeting ever recorded took place in 1802.
Turffontein hosts The Summer Cup, one of the three biggest racing events in the country - the others are the J&B Met in Cape Town and the Durban July.