Construction of the Rosehill Racecourse as we know it today began way back in 1883 when wealthy real estate investor John Bennett purchased a large portion of land on which to construct the track together with a large recreational area. This was followed by a private train line completed in 1888 to service the racecourse from neighbouring Clyde. Over the years, Rosehill Racecourse has seen some major changes and improvements and until today it remains one of the top two racecourses in NSW.
Key moments in history
Over the years, Rosehill has been visited by several prominent celebrities. The first of which was Harry Houdini who performed an amazing escape from a bi-plane at a height of 150ft in 1901 in front of a crowd of incredulous onlookers.
Through the war and raising donations, to the racecourse becoming a field hospital during the outbreak of Spanish Influenza in 1919, the first 30 years of operation at Rosehill were certainly an adventure.
Rosehill Gardens was managed by the Sydney Turf Club from 1943 until 2011 when the Sydney Turf Club and the Australian Jockey Club combined into the Australian Turf Club, which took over the current ownership and management of the track.
The Rosehill races saw the maiden run of world-famous horse Phar Lap with a 17-year-old Jack Baker in the saddle. Phar Lap continued on to win many Group 1 races at the Rosehill track amongst his many other victories.
In 1954 Rosehill racing was graced by a visit from Queen Elizabeth II who gave winners the honour of receiving their trophies from the Queen in person. Throughout its years of existence, Rosehill Racecourse has seen some incredible events take place.
Rosehill race history
Today the Rosehill Racecourse plays host to some of the most important races on the Sydney calendar. From the Golden Rose Stakes to the Rosehill Guineas, Run to the Roses and The Galaxy, there is quite a list of events that take place at this beautiful racecourse throughout the year.
The Golden Slipper Stakes is Australia’s premier race for 2-year-old thoroughbreds and with a $3.5million purse, it is certainly one of the most coveted horse racing events of the season. Beginning in 1957, the Golden Slipper Stakes was the first horse race in NSW to offer prize money of over $1million and is run in March or April every year as part of the wider Golden Slipper Carnival.
Named for the five-time sire of champions who won the Golden Slipper, the Star Kingdom Stakes was renamed between 2010 and 2014 for championship horse Sebring before reverting back to the original name. Today the Star Kingdom Stakes is a 1200m Group 3 race for 3-year-olds and over with a prize pool of $160,000.
The future of Rosehill racing
In 2020 and 2021, Rosehill has experienced a lack of spectators as has many other tracks around the country, but the future’s looking bright. As one of Sydney’s top two racecourses, there is certainly a bright future to be had at Rosehill Racecourse as it continues to put on leading Australian horse racing events for the champions of the future. Throughout the year you can visit Rosehill Racecourse be it for a race or a private function. As one of Sydney’s most beautiful locations, a visit to Rosehill is not to be missed.