- Address: Stadium, The Pinnacles, Roydon Rd, Harlow CM19 5FT
- Telephone: 01279 426804
- Website: harlowgreyhounds.co.uk
Located in the Harlow area of Essex, Harlow Stadium has hosted greyhound racing since it opened in 1995. Racing rakes place on Monday and Wednesday evenings, as well as in the morning on a Friday, Saturday and Sunday. There are all of the usual facilities that you’d expect from a modern venue of its size, including conference and banqueting facilities in addition to executive suites, bars and a restaurant.
As you might think is the case of a dog racing track in the middle of Essex, Harlow isn’t exactly the biggest and most bustling such venue in the United Kingdom. There isn’t even a huge amount to tell you about in terms of the track’s history, given the fact that it is much younger than most other greyhound venues in the country. That is a tale in itself, however, when you consider that greyhound racing’s popularity was declining by the time that it opened.
The Track & Facilities
Harlow Stadium is relatively modern, compared to many of the tracks that you’ll find around the UK. It has enough room for 1,500 people to turn up and watch greyhound racing, in addition to space enough for around 400 cars in the car park. There are the usual fast food places where you can get a bite to eat, as well as several bars located around the place. There is also a restaurant, which offers decent views of the track for those in attendance. At the time of writing, the following are the race lengths that take place on the course, which is 334 metres in length:
- 238 Metres
- 415 Metres
- 592 Metres
- 769 Metres
- 946 Metres
- 415 Metres Over Hurdles
- 592 Metres Over Hurdles
Major Races & Events
In truth, there are no races of any real prestige that take place at Harlow Stadium. That isn’t to say that it isn’t worth getting along to watch some greyhound racing if you get the chance, just that you won’t be watching any particularly well-known events any time soon. That being said, with greyhound stadiums continuing to close across the country, there is certainly a fair chance that one or two of the smaller big-name races might move here at some point.
In the News
On the one hand, Harlow Stadium’s website does have its own section entitled ‘NEWS’. On the other hand, it probably tells you quite a lot that the main story in that section is that it launched a new website on the fifth of April. That it doesn’t even tell you in which year that was is also quite revealing, with Harlow Stadium generally keeping itself out of the news apart from when the likes of the Racing Post choose to publish the results of the races that have been held there.
About Harlow Dog Track
In 1993, a site was chosen for the construction of a new greyhound racing stadium, with the Pinnacles off Roydon Road being thought of as the best location. That put it to the west of the nearby football ground, with access to the greyhound venue being located on Stadium Way, which was just past the local industrial estate. The land went to receivers, which Toni Nicholls bought and moved to construct the new venue. This included executive suites, in addition to a large car park and conference and banqueting facilities, plus a new restaurant for customers.
1994: First Trial Session
The first ever trial session took place in October of 1994, allowing the stadium to gear up for its official opening. That happened in March of 1995, with former trainer Stan Gudgin being installed as the Racing Manager. When he retired, he was replaced by Mark Schellenberg. In 2005, Leaside Leisure Limited, which was the company of Toni Nicholls, agreed to sell the venue to Barclay Entertainment. That was joint-owned by Dave Barclay, a successful building contractor in the area of Essex, who invested money into improving the facilities as well as doing what he could to bring success to Harlow.
General Manager & Trainers
When Walthamstow Stadium closed in 2008, Barclay persuaded Chris Page to come in as General Manager and bring five successful trainers with him. They were John Coleman, Mick Puzey, Mark Wallis, Kelly Mullins and Graham Sharp. Wallis managed to bring the ultimate prize in greyhound racing to the venue in 2009 when he won the English Greyhound Derby with Kinda Ready. The stadium got its first Sky Sports contract in 2011, with Barclay introducing Greyhound Sales two years later before signing a deal with Sports Information Services in 2018 that saw racing take place on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.
Records at Harlow
At the time of writing, the following are the track records at the stadium:
|Distance||Record Time||Date Set|
|238 Metres||14.52 Seconds||29th January 2020|
|415 Metres||25.50 Seconds||9th October 2002|
|592 Metres||36.85 Seconds||10th January 2018|
|769 Metres||49.43 Seconds||31st May 2006|
|946 Metres||62.11 Seconds||23rd May 2010|
|415 Metres Over Hurdles||26.03 Seconds||8th August 2010|
|592 Metres Over Hurdles||38.30 Seconds||22nd August 2001|