Naas is a very popular horse racing venue in County Kildare, Ireland. The track sites only around 18 miles from Dublin which means it’s well supported, hosting year-round racing on the Flat and over jumps.
- Address – Naas Racecourse, Tipper Road, Naas, County Kildare, Ireland.
- Owner – The Naas Race Company Limited.
- TV Station – Racing TV.
- Type – Flat and National Hunt.
- Surface – Turf.
Naas stages racing over both codes, and it pays punters to know the intricacies of both tracks.
The Flat track is left-handed and around one and a half miles in length. Its size makes it a typical galloping track, while it also features a four-furlong home straight which is pretty stiff, meaning that stamina truly comes to the fore.
Naas was/is known as the “punter’s graveyard”, but in fact the track is pretty fair. Sticking to the facts and using the best ratings rather than anything quirky should still bring decent results.
There is a straight course for five and six-furlong races, with a chute provided to allow starts for the sprints without a bend.
Flat Track Analysis
Jockeys tend to report Naas a being fair, adding more confidence for punters.
Some sections of the track are reported as being softer than others on wet days, so with that in mind as well as the stiff straight, we should be playing for stamina and not speed according to jockeys.
The one-mile and seven-furlong runs are particularly fair with no hard luck stories fed back regularly, with the straight sprint track now flatter than before having had its minor ridges removed.
High draws may be favoured when the ground gets soft, other than that there is no real bias according to the riders.
Once more, the basic premise of the Naas jumps track is that it is a one-and-a-half-mile, left-handed oval which is basically galloping in nature.
The uphill finish makes it pretty tough, so staying types are favoured. For the avoidance of doubt; you’re looking for a horse completely proven over the advertised race distance or further. Speed and associated figures are generally not important at all.
The hurdles track is to the inner, with the chase course running around the outer. There are eight fences on each chase circuit, with two in the four-furlong home straight and a run-in of over a furlong which adds to the need for staying ability and, ideally, a long stride.
Jumps Track Analysis
Ireland’s jump jockeys have fed back some great stories about Naas, especially regarding its galloping nature.
Once more, they attest to the fact that the ground is better from just under a mile out with the rest of it being a little softer, so bear that in mind when you’re reading basic going descriptions.
The stiff finish has led to experienced jockeys holding a little back, though racing handy is favoured so watch with caution when it comes to out-and-out hold-up horses.
Visiting Naas Racecourse
Naas isn’t too far from Dublin and the east coast of Ireland, so the track and the surrounding areas are well worth a visit.
How to Get to Naas
If you’re driving to Naas from the Dublin area, then take the N7, R410, leaving the N7 at exit 9. The journey should just around 40 minutes.
From south of the track, drivers should head into the N7 and again use exit 9. You’ll see signposts for the racecourse which is just five minutes from the exit.
Train services run from Dublin’s Heuston Station across to Sallins. The station at Sallins is very close to Naas. Taxies are available, though there is also a feeder bus made available from Sallins to Naas.
Naas Racecourse provides a shuttle bus on all race days during the season. The shuttle runs from Sallins Station to the racecourse before and after racing. Check with the track for times of the bus service.
Where to Stay
Eg Newmarket is accessible from Cambridge etc
Biggest Races at Naas
Naas runs some excellent race days over both codes, though most of its better races are run over the jumps. Here are the calendar highlights from Naas:
|Lawlor’s of Naas Novice Hurdle||5yo+, Novice Hurdle, Grade 1||NH||2m4f||January|
|Naas Racecourse Business Club Novice Chase||5yo+, Novice Chase, Grade 3||NH||2m4½f||January|
|Limestone Lad Hurdle||5yo+, Hurdle, Grade 3||NH||2m3f||January|
|Newlands Chase||5yo+, Chase, Grade 3||NH||2m||February|
|Nas Na Riogh Novice Chase||5yo+, Novice Chase, Grade B||NH||2m4½f||February|
|Johnstown Novice Hurdle||4yo+, Novice Hurdle, Grade 2||NH||1m7½f||February|
|Kingsfurze Novice Hurdle||4yo+, Novice Hurdle, Grade 3||NH||1m7½f||March|
|Director’s Plate||5yo+, Novice Chase, Grade 3||NH||2m4½f||March|
|Leinster National||5yo+, Handicap Chase, Grade A||NH||3m½f||March|
|Blue Wind Stakes||3yo+, Fillies & Mares, Group 3||Flat||1m2f||May|
|Sprint Stakes||2yo Fillies Only, Listed Race||Flat||6f||June|
|Poplar Square Chase||5yo+, Chase, Grade 3||NH||2m||October/November|
|Fishery Lane Hurdle||4yo Only, Hurdle, Grade 3||NH||2m||November|
About Naas Racecourse
In order to formalise racing in the area, the Naas Races Company was formed in 1922. The first meeting organised by the company was held on June 19, 1924.
The company developed the left-handed, galloping track we know today with that strong uphill finish, making it popular with trainers.
Though many are run these days under sponsor names, popular and high-quality races to have been formulated at Naas and run to this day include the Nas Na Riogh Novice Chase, the Johnstown Novice Hurdle and on the Flat, the Sprint Stakes for the fillies and the Blue Wind Stakes too.
Naas is known to be a very fair track. The many quirks that exist elsewhere aren’t evident at Naas, so while it’s often hard work for the horses and jockeys, it is slightly easier to read for punters than other tracks despite a reputation formulated to the opposite.
Naas hosts a number of Graded races over the jumps as well as one Group race on the Flat.