Betfred St Leger Festival Back Making History After Royal Weekend

Just shy of 50,000 spectators came from all over to pack out Doncaster Racecourse across the four-day event.

  • The Racecourse welcomed Their Majesties The King and Queen to Doncaster to watch their horse, Desert Hero, compete in the Betfred St Leger Stakes
  • Excited racegoers got their chance to bid farewell to Frankie Dettori as he competed in his final Classic before his retirement 
  • The event concluded on a Sunday for the first time with the inaugural St Leger Community Funday with racegoers showcasing Doncaster’s community spirit

Yesterday (Sunday 17 September) marked the conclusion of this year’s Betfred St Leger Festival at Doncaster Racecourse, with the famous festival bringing in thousands of punters into the city, including Their Majesties The King and Queen.

The historic festival commenced on Thursday 14 September with Ladies Day for the first time in the event’s modern history. Tying into the overarching theme of the event, ‘Made in Doncaster’, a renowned local designer, Estelle Pearce, created a unique style guide to ensure everyone was dressed to the nines!

Day two showcased what Doncaster is made of at the aptly named ‘Donny Day’, with Hollie Doyle riding Trueshan to a win in the Betfred Doncaster Cup.

On Saturday’s Betfred St Leger Day, the racecourse was privileged to play host to The King and Queen ahead of the world’s oldest Classic race, the Betfred St Leger Stakes. Their Majesties attended Doncaster Racecourse to watch their horse Desert Hero, who came third behind Frankie Dettori's mount Arrest. Continuous, ridden by Ryan Moore, took home the first-place prize in an impressive victory.


This year’s festival concluded with the very first Community Funday that showcased the incredible community spirit within Doncaster. The day drew an impressive crowd of enthusiastic families, friends, and individuals celebrating the spirit of unity and festivity.

The success of the 2023 Betfred St Leger Festival comes after recent years being impacted by unprecedented events with Covid limitations in 2020 and The Queen passing away during last year’s festival. This year has seen crowds come back in their thousands and new title sponsors Betfred come on board as one of the most famous horse racing events in the calendar comes back to full force.

Rachel Harwood, Executive Director of Doncaster Racecourse, said: “What a fantastic four-day’s here in Doncaster for the Betfred St Leger Festival. Our “Made in Doncaster” theme shined through each and every day and I’d like to thank everyone who attended for making this one of the most memorable St Leger Festivals in years.

“It was a pleasure to welcome everyone to the Racecourse, including Their Majesties The King and Queen, making it a true celebration of our local community and horse racing as a whole – I already can’t wait for 2024!”

For more information about the 2024 Betfred St Leger Festival, please visit for more information or call the team on 01302 304200.