Thrills, spills and flying dismounts - the flat season is back
With the dust about to settle on the National Hunt season proper, we rub our hands together with glee as we prepare for the return of the flat season, which means flying dismounts, jugs full of pimms and some of the most exciting horse racing in the world.
Fresh in the memory is Sea The Stars and how he came and swept aside all before him and the racing world will be praying it unearths another superstar this season.
This season sees former champion jockey Kieron Fallon back in the saddle to ride alongside great rivals such as Frankie Dettori, Jamie Spencer and Jonny Murtagh which adds extra spice to proceedings as the Irishman bids to get his formerly illustrious career back on track.
The season kicks off with the William Hill sponsored Lincoln handicap which is one of the most hotly contested races of the year and is a wonderful start to the season and this is followed by the two day Craven meeting at Newmarket towards the end of April.
The first Classic of the year is the 2000 Guineas, taking place on May 1 and a race for which Aidan O'Brien is already showing a strong hand with ante post favourite St Nicholas Abbey who has been in that position since hacking up impressively in a series of races last season.
The competition will be fierce though and the same can be said for the female's equivalent, the 1000 Guineas which happens the day after, making that one of the most exciting weekends to be around Newmarket all year.
The 1000 Guineas also has a popular market leader in the shape of French raider Special Duty who was last seen romping away with the Cheveley Park Stakes at Newmarket and she should be back to cement her claim as the best female miler around.
May sees the Juddmonte meeting at Newbury as well as the Dante meeting at York which both take place the week before the Irish 1000 and 2000 Guineas at the Curragh.
As we roll in to June we are well in to the season and arguably the greatest show piece of the campaign take place at Epsom with Friday 4 May giving the best fillies around a chance to strut their stuff in the Oaks and with an extremely open field, could it be O'Brien, Sir Michael Stoute, Saeed bin Suroor or possibly last year's winning trainer Michael Bell who walks away with the spoils?
Then it's the turn of the boys on the Saturday as the best 3 - year - olds line up for the Derby and St Nicholas Abbey also heads the market for this great race and could be the next super - horse coming out of the O'Brien stable.
June sees the meeting that is many a person's highlight of the whole summer - Royal Ascot. A chance for the ladies to dress to impress and the gents to splash the cash amidst royalty, celebrity and a host of Group 1 races which in the last few years has seen horses from all over the world come to compete and this year looks like it will be no exception.
Ascot also plays host to the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes meeting in July and this often serves as a warm to Glorious Goodwood, set in breathtaking surroundings, this undulating course has seen numerous upsets and is another chance for race goers to break out their finery and witness some spectacular flat racing.
August's highlight is the Juddmonte meeting at York which tees us up nicely for huge Septemeber which plays host to the final Classic of the season, the 1m6f St Leger which tests the stamina of the best horses around and often has a large contingent from the Derby so clues to market leaders can be found throughout the season.
Those are just a few of the meetings that take place throughout this exciting season which promises to be even more thrilling than the last one and with William Hill you won't miss a thing with ante post markets, horse racing specials and best odds guaranteed to give you everything you need to get the most out of your racing experience.