The Jockey Club | Bob Champion | Horse Racing Art
I was lucky enough to be invited to a lunch at The Jockey Club in Newmarket last Friday and had the absolute pleasure of being seated next to racing legend Bob Champion. The club lies behind huge wrought iron gates in the center of New Market, The Jockey Club is such a spectacular and special place, it is famously a very private members club where fame nor money would guarantee you a membership, the queen is also a patron and visits often.
The Jockey Club was founded in 1750 in London by some very powerful men who all shared a loved for horse racing. Originally they used to meet at a swanky members club on Pall-mall. In 1972 they moved to a piece of land in New Market which used to be a coffee house. This is where The Jockey Club still remains today. The Jockey club started to develop rules of racing and standards which were soon to be adopted throughout the country and they soon became the official governing body for horseracing in the UK.
Over the years The Jockey Club acquired a portfolio of Britain's top racecourse including:
Aintree Racecourse | Carlisle Racecourse | Cheltenham Racecourse | Epsom Downs Racecourse | Exeter Racecourse | Haydock Park Racecourse | Huntingdon Racecourse | Kempton Park Racecourse | Market Rasen Racecourse | Newmarket July Course | Newmarket Rowley Mile | Nottingham Racecourse | Sandown Park Racecourse | Warwick Racecourse | Wincanton Racecourse
In 2008 The National stud also became part of the Jockey Club. The National Stud is a 500 acres horse stables holding the highest standards in horse breeding. It also offers a boarding service and internationally renowned training facilities give young people entering the industry the best possible start to a career in Thoroughbred breeding.
The most incredible thing for me as a horse painter entering the world of the Jockey club is the fact that the entire place is wall to wall in horse decor and horse racing art. Everywhere you look there is a stunning equine painting. Their art collection is immense and steeped in history with the star piece being a huge George Stubbs hanging over the fireplace. Visiting this amazing place was absolute heaven for me, and I am one daydreaming of getting one of my paintings hanging on their wall.