Redcar Racecourse has been praised by a national body for its ongoing support of the “unsung heroes of the industry” ahead of the seaside track’s first meeting of the year.

George McGrath, Chief Executive of the National Association of Racing Staff, has welcomed further improvements to accommodation and catering facilities for stable staff travelling to Redcar.

In the run-up to the 2022 season, around £600,000 was spent on improvements to Redcar’s on-site hostel for stable staff, with 18 en suite rooms ensuring comfortable overnight stays.

That has been followed up for this year with further improvements to the hostel and café as part of ongoing investment.

Redcar, in partnership with Milbry Hill country and equestrian store, has also confirmed that it will also be continuing to provide “best turned out” prizes for every race during its 18 fixtures during 2023.

The member of staff responsible for preparing the best turned out horse in each race will receive a cash reward from Redcar plus a voucher from Milbry Hill. The winner of the most best turned out prizes during the year will be presented with a £250 Milbry Hill shopping voucher at the last meeting.

Mr McGrath said: “We welcome the improvements Redcar has made and continues to make for the racing staff.

“A best turned out prize in every race and a £250 prize at the end of the year is not only an incentive for the racing staff, but recognition of their hard work and commitment.

“The improvements to the café, day and overnight facilities are another welcome improvement and we commend Redcar for their continued improvement of the racing staff facilities”.

Redcar’s support for stable staff was recognised last year by Ian Williams, travelling head lad for leading Newmarket trainer, William Haggas, who said: “Redcar’s done a really good job. It’s much appreciated.”

Annual badgeholders, who are in an exclusive group limited to 250, also have a new home for 2023 – in the Conservatory Lounge, in the Petch Stand.

Redcar’s 2023 season starts on Easter Monday, when the Easter Bunny will be joined by stilt-walkers handing out chocolate mini-eggs to children arriving early.

Redcar’s general manager, Amy Fair, said: “The Easter Monday fixture is our biggest family day of the year and it’s sure to be a lot of fun, with great racing, and some eggstra-special treats for youngsters. We can’t wait to be under starter’s orders.”

A variety of local charities will be supported by Redcar Raecourse during the year, starting with Cleveland Mountain Rescue on Monday.

The Bank Holiday meeting also marks the start of Redcar’s new partnership with growing local business SDDE Smith Group, with the Woodsmith Construction Handicap featuring as the penultimate on the card.

Gates open at 11.44am with the first of seven races due at 1.44pm and the last scheduled for 5.11pm. However, these times are provisional and will be confirmed 48 hours before the meeting.

Racegoers can save money by booking tickets in advance. Admission to the Grandstand Enclosure is £16 in advance or £18 with cash or card on the day. Course Enclosure admission is £6 in advance or £7 cash on the day.

Under 18s come racing for free into both enclosures and must be accompanied by an adult at all times. There’s no need to book a ticket for those under 18. Concessions are also available on the day for those aged 65-plus and students with a valid student card.