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Wroclaw Racecourse

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The tradition of horse racing in Wroclaw goes back to the Middle Ages, but the first racecourse was built in 1833. It encompassed a part of the present zoological gardens and Centenary Hall together with the adjacent pergolas. On May 31st, 1833 the first races took place at this course. Since 1870 the races have been organised together with a race lottery. The leasing contract for that course expired in 1907, and so the Silesian Horse Breeders and Races Association bought 70 hectares of land in Partynice in 1905. On October 1st, 1905 the construction of the racecourse commenced based on the design by R. Jurgens from Hamburg. The construction was financed with a loan granted to the Association by the Municipality and the horserace lottery organised by the Association. In less than two years, on the 75th anniversary of the Silesian Horse Breeders and Races Association, the Partynice Racecourse officially opened.

Before the World War I there were high-profile races Partynice and prizes for the horses. Later on, the Wroclaw races lost significance due to increasing economic crisis. One shall admit, however, that even in the years of the Depression (1930-1935) the provincial racecourses, including Wroclaw's, were financed by the Ministry of Agriculture, due to its special importance in breeding.

The buildings were not destroyed during the World War II, but the racecourse was ruined. The postwar activity at the racecourse commenced on April 26th, 1950, when the Minister of Agriculture and Land Reform set up the state enterprise called the National Horse Racecourses, that included three Polish racecourses: Sluzewiec in Warsaw, the Sopot racecourse and Partynice in Wroclaw. The inauguration of the first postwar racing season in Wroclaw took place on July 11th, 1953. For several years many kinds of gallop races were organised: flat, hurdle and obstacle races. Since the war, the only seasons that have not taken place at our course were in 1959, 1961, 1962 and 1993. In the remaining years 2 to 25 race days were organised. The most prestigious was the international meeting of socialist countries in 1969, moved from Prague to Wroclaw for political reasons.

At present, there are 180 horses trained at the course: half-blooded and full-blooded English. The greatest number of buildings are from the beginning of this century, but there are older ones as well. In the fifties 5 stables and race lottery booking office were built.

This beautiful corner of Wroclaw, the racecourse, was leased by the Municipality to the Agricultural Property Agency of the Treasury in Warsaw on February 23rd, 1995, and since 25th March 1998 the racecourse has been owned by the Municipality of Wroclaw. Now the Wroclaw Racecourse - Partynice is a budgetary unit of the Municipality of Wroclaw.

Since 1998 it has operated a year-round recreational stable. There are hippotherapy (therapy using horses) sessions led at Partynice. All horse enthusiasts (bettors, supporters and fans, riders and those who simply find pleasure in being with horses) are invited. Wroclaw Racecourse - Partynice also organises recreational festivities (Children's Day, the Day with the British Embassy, the Day with the Partner Club of Slask Wroclaw Club - co-organisation) and breeding shows. In 2000 the Wroclaw racecourse has organised 19 races, such as: Arabella BGZ Prize - OAKS (for the best 3 half-blooded mares), The Mayor of Wroclaw Prize (for the best 3 half-blooded stallions), Derby Half-Bred Prize (for the best 3 half-blooded mares and stallions), as well as the international races Great Wroclaw (obstacle race for full-blooded English horses) and Great Partynice (hurdle-race for full-blooded English horses). The Wroclaw Racecourse - Partynice was the organiser or co-organiser of horse contests in hurdle jumps and breaking-in. In 2000 it hosted regional contests as well as Official Polish Contest in Breaking-in and Polish Championship in Breaking-in for Seniors. The restaurant-hotel complex, breaking-in room with stables, a gymnasium, body-building room and sauna, mini-golf course and tennis court are going to be built at the site. The first - a breaking-in room - has already been built. The building, which was only used seasonally for many years, will now be used year-round thanks to the new concept. Therefore, in addition to buildings assigned solely to riding activities, there are footpaths, bridle paths and bicycle paths planned.

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