Selangor Turf Club is touted to be one of the most up-to-date and comprehensively equipped racecourses in the Asian region. Founded in 1896, the club has a long, rich history of growth and progress.
Located in Serdang, in the state of Selangor, Malaysia, it is one of the three racecourses in Malaysia, the other two being Penang Turf Club and Perak Turf Club. The club is home to the Selangor Triple Crown Series, which entails three Group 1 races, including the Tunku Gold Cup, the Selangor Gold Cup, and the Piala Emas Sultan Selangor.
Here is a brief insight into the history and facilities of the Selangor Turf Club.
Selangor Turf Club History
The history of the Selangor Turf Club can be traced back to the late 1800s, when a few amateur racing aficionados, particularly the British officers residing in the area at that time, made an organised effort to launch a place where they could carry out recreational activities, racing mostly.
The Selangor Turf Club was formally launched around that time, while Kuala Lumpur was declared the capital of the Selangor state. Horse racing had gained massive popularity among the masses and had become a major attraction for different people.
The club moved to Jalan Ampang in Serdang in 1896. However, after nearly a century of conducting races in Jalan Ampang, the Selangor Turf Club shifted to a brand new location in Sungei Besi in 1993. The old site of the turf club is now the location of the world-renowned KLCC Petronas Towers.
Selangor Racecourse Facilities
The Selangor Racecourse is located just outside the southern boundary of Kuala Lumpur and spread out over 103 hectares. The land where it is presently was previously a cut and fill mine for tin which had been abandoned.
The facility features two racing tracks. The main racing track is 25 meters wide and can cater to races ranging from 1200m to 2400m. The left-handed track is grass-based and oval in shape.
The track is unique in the sense that it constitutes the Zoysia El-Toro Turf. The turf is designed to have an entrenched drainage system so that the horses have some cushion when running. Sub-soil pipes go through the gravel base layer for drainage, with a lower sand layer that helps the water drain quickly.
The design of the turf is such that water is drained efficiently even during heavy rainfall. Even if the track’s condition goes below yielding, it recovers quickly and is ready for use in no time. Another unique aspect of the track is its raised bends which are cambered at such an angle that horses can run at full pace into the bend and retain the momentum before they head for the home stretch. This way, all the contestants have equal opportunity in the race, making the race more competitive and entertaining.
The second track caters to distances of 1175m, 1275m, and 1700m. The 1175m has a 400m run to the first turn. The 1275m begins at the top of the back straight course and has a 400m run to the first turn. The 1700m distance starts 50m ahead of the winning post and has a 146m long run to the bend out of the straight course.
The Selangor Turf Club also features stables that can house up to 700 horses and a grandstand that can accommodate 25,000 people. The grandstand is a huge five-story building that also has a basement.
The grandstand has two parts, one for the members and the other for the public. Members have access to their section via an escalator that can take them to the top of the building in the private section with exclusive facilities and corporate boxes for viewing the match with comfort and an excellent view.
There are various restaurants on both sides of the members’ entrance which also cater to the public on non-racing days. There is also an equine pool and clinic on the property for the horses’ training and healthcare. The racecourse also features training tracks made of sand and grass, which are used as public riding facilities. The entire facility has been designed with room for expansion so that future needs can be catered to without hassle.
How to get to Selangor Turf Club
You can reach the Selangor Turf Club via Bus, Train, Monorail, LRT, or MRT. On race days, you can catch a two-way shuttle bus that runs between the tracks, the Sungai Besi LRT Station, and the Serdang KTM Station.
What is the ticket price for entrance to the Selangor Turf Club?
You can purchase the ticket for entrance to the grandstand on the day of the race. If you want a standard ticket, you can purchase it for RM6 from the booth at the Public Entrance Hall. If you want a seat in the public air-conditioned seating area, the ticket price is RM20. You can also opt for a racing package, which includes lunch and a seat in the public air-conditioned seating area and costs RM170.