Home to Africa’s greatest horseracing event, the Vodacom Durban July, Greyville Racecourse hosts a total of 12 Grade One races during Champions Season which offers more than R44 million in race stakes. Framed in the background by the many hotels of Durban’s Golden Mile, Greyville Racecourse is situated at the bottom of Durban’s Berea and surrounds the green expanse of Royal Durban Golf Club’s championship course.
Greyville racetrack is a righthanded, pear-shaped track with a circumference of about 2900m. It has a run-in of 400m and no straight course for sprints. Many a front runner has stolen a march on the opposition, especially when there is a strong south-westerly following wind. Horses who race from off the pace also do well at Greyville, but ability to quicken is essential in such cases. Inside draws are generally favoured over most distances up to 1900m, but more so than most over 1600m as the start is effected right on the top bend.
This turf track consists of several gradient features: it is run uphill from the 2,400-meter mark to the 1,800-metre mark, after which it slopes gently downward for approximately the next 800 metres then uphill again into the nearly flat 500 metre homestretch. A 2,000-meter all-weather Polytrack was constructed inside the existing turf track in 2014 with the first races held in June that year.
The history of horse racing in KwaZulu Natal goes back well over 150 years, with the first meeting held in July 1844, close to the site of the present course. Greyville Racecourse celebrated its centenary in 1996. The Durban July was first held in 1897 with only seven horses competing.
King George VI, Queen Elizabeth and Princesses Elizabeth and Margaret visited there in 1947. Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh also dropped by in 1995. The track staged South Africa’s first-ever Sunday meeting in February 1996 and became the first to race orses under floodlights.
On Thursday 27 June 2019, Hollywoodbets was announced as the naming rights sponsor for both Greyville and Scottsville racecourses in a 3-year deal. The racecourses will now be known as Hollywoodbets Greyville Racecourse and Hollywoodbets Scottsville Racecourse.
Besides racing, the track’s infield holds the Royal Durban Golf Club’s Championship golf course.
On non-race days you can walk your dogs or take a jog around the track. Leads are not required for dogs which leads to great socialisation opportunities and it is a very popular doggie spot.
Pleasant walks can be taken around the golf course situated in the middle of the course. The architecture of surrounding buildings which makes for a very scenic walk. The complete walk takes about 35 minutes.
It is safe during daylight hours for solo walkers / runners.
Address: 150 Avondale Road Greyville, Box 40 Durban 4000
Tel. (031) 309-4545 Fax. (031) 309-2553