From Glyndebourne to Glastonbury - A social calendar for the 21st century
William Hill Winter Festival
26 December, 2013 - 27 December, 2013
Kempton Racecourse, Sunbury-on-Thames, Middlesex
Seen as the mid-season championship for top chasers, the Stan James King George VI Chase is one of the most historic races in the jumps calendar. It is the centrepiece of a programme of top-class jump racing at Kempton Park.
The George VI is run over a flat three miles, with the emphasis on speed as well as stamina. It was first run in 1937, in honour of the new king.
King George Day (26 December) features two other Grade I races: the Stan James Christmas Hurdle and the Network Design Feltham Novices' Chase. On the 27th the top class racing continues, with the Desert Orchid Chase, Stan James Wayward Lad Novice Chase and the stanjames.co.uk Handicap Chase.
Run at Kempton Park, which is easily accessible from central London, the Christmas Festival is a great antidote to seasonal torpor. It's an ideal family day out, with children's entertainers, balloon modellers and face painters.