Last weekend saw a small group of Horse Racing Abroad travellers take to the skies, en route to Warsaw, for the Polish Derby. Thankfully, the weather was kind and allowed us to enjoy the city's many boutiques, excellent street cafés and world-class museums. We also found time to visit the Royal Castle to view some of Eastern Europe's finest art. Our groups stayed at the Hotel Bristol and the Sofitel Victoria Warsaw; both hotels were very welcoming and proved to be the ideal base from which to explore the city.
Sunday was race day and we headed off to Sluzewiec racecourse ready for the day's action. We had arranged for a tour of the racecourse prior to sitting down to lunch. We were housed trackside, near the finishing post, in the VIP marquee and were looked after magnificently; our glasses were never empty, which helped alleviate the pain for those less successful at the bookies! A veritable feast was enjoyed at lunchtime thanks to the very impressive buffet on offer.
We were lucky enough to receive a visit prior to the races by one of Poland's top jockeys, Tom Lukasek, who went on to win the Derby with Caccini. The Derby itself was run over 2,400m with a first prize of 100,000 PLN (approx. £20,000). We were also delighted to see Va Bank run in one of the supporting races, which takes him to a record 10 races unbeaten.
We had a fantastic weekend of racing and exploring a new city. The only question now is, where next?!
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