Golden Gate Fields

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Golden Gate Fields

Golden Gate Fields is a horse-racing track in Berkeley, California, United States. It opened in 1941, at Eastshore Hwy.

History of Golden Gate Fields

1879 to 1892 – The race track was originally a part of the slough into which three creeks drain, Schoolhouse Creek, Codornices Creek, and Marin Creek. It was also used to send cattle across the bay to San Francisco for slaughter and processing. Then, later on, a Giant Powder Company purchased it, and it recorded that the plant blew up twice between 1879 and 1892.

1941 – Just before World War II, the Golden Gate Fields opened in 1941. Right after the opening, Golden Gate Fields created the Golden Gate Handicap.

1950 – Noor and Citation met in Golden Gate Handicap and were considered the most exciting horse racing rivalries in the sport’s history for some fans. 

1972 – The infield turf course was established on February 22, 1972.

1980 – On February 7, the track introduced one-window wagering through the American Tote 300.

1989 – UK-based Ladbroke Racing acquired the Golden Gate Fields.

1992 – Russell Baze set a Golden Gate Fields record for most wins in a meet on June 10 with his 165th victory.

1999 –  A different company again acquired the Golden Gate Fields in 1999, the Magna Entertainment Corporation.

2007 – A synthetic track was established during the summer of 2007, as mandated by the California Horse Racing Board. It is called Tapeta synthetic all-weather racing surface, created to have a safer race for horses and riders.

2008 – Bay Meadows lost to developers. Golden Gate Fields became Northern California’s only major racetrack except for the racetracks connected with the summer fair circuit. 

2009 to 2011 – Magna filed for bankruptcy In March 2009. Hence, the Stronach Group purchased the Golden Gate Fields on July 3, 2011, to salvage from bankruptcy.  

2016 – Golden Gate Fields hired the 29-year-old Angela Hermann as the track announcer after Michael Wrona. She was the first full-time female race caller in the United States after Ann Elliott in the 1960s.

Pop Culture References

The song “GGF”, about lead singer Tim Armstrong’s childhood near Golden Gate Fields, was written and performed by the Punk rock band Rancid on their 2000 self-titled album. Rancid video “Last One to Die” featured the Golden Gate Fields. Sal Paradise visited the Golden Gate Fields with his friend Remi Boncœur who lost all their money before the seventh race in the novel On the Road by Jack Kerouac. A scene from a movie titled Metro was also filmed at Golden Gate Fields.

Track Details and Other Facilities

Track Details

  • 🐎Whole Racetrack
    • The track is set on 140 acres (0.57 km2) of land.
  • 🐎Synthetic Track
    • It measures one mile (1,609 meters) and is oval (sandy loam).
    • The Stretch width is 78 feet.
    • Backstretch is 75 feet.
    • The distance from the last turn to the finish is 1,000 feet.
    • The distance from the finish line to the first turn is 383 feet.
  • 🐎Lakeside Turf Course
    • It measures nine-tenths mile and is oval.
    • It is 65 feet wide throughout.
    • It has a 3/16 mile chute.
    • The maximum width is 75 feet.
    • The minimum width is 50 feet with a movable rail.

Other Facilities

  • 🐎Main grandstand 
    • It can accommodate approximately 8,000 customers,
  • 🐎Clubhouse 
    • It has seating that can accommodate approximately 5,200 customers.
  • 🐎Turf Club 
    • It has seats for approximately 1,500 customers
    • No Walk-Up Admission, and you should purchase turf club tickets in advance.
    • The Turf Club Restaurant opens at noon and closes following the day’s last race.
    • It is situated on the top level of the grandstand.
    • Dress Code:
      • Business casual attire is recommended.
      • Collared shirts & dress slacks are preferred.
      • Dresses are also acceptable.
  • 🐎Stable
    • 1,420 horses.
  • 🐎Parking Space
    • 8,500 cars.

Race Schedule and Major Events & Races​

Golden Gate Fields Schedule

  • 🐎Live Racing Schedule
    • Race Days are Fridays to Sundays.
    • The first post is every 12:45 PM, depending on the events.
  • 🐎Opening of the Gate
    • Gates Open at noon (12 PM).
    • Gates close 30 minutes following the conclusion of the last race.

Graded Events

  • Grade III
      • 🐴Berkeley Handicap
      • 🐴San Francisco Mile Stakes

Black-type Listed Stakes

      • 🐴El Camino Real Derby
      • 🐴California Derby
      • 🐴All American Stakes

Overnight Handicaps and Ungraded Stakes Events

      • 🐴California Oaks
      • 🐴Silky Sullivan Handicap
      • 🐴Albany Stakes
      • 🐴Alcatraz Stakes
      • 🐴Campanile Stakes
      • 🐴Golden Poppy
      • 🐴Tanforan Stakes
      • 🐴Miss America Stakes
      • 🐴Corte Madera Stakes
      • 🐴China Basin Stakes
      • 🐴Gold Rush Stakes
      • 🐴Half Moon Bay Stakes
      • 🐴Lost in the Fog Stakes
      • 🐴Pacific Heights Stakes
      • 🐴Mill Valley Stakes
      • 🐴Raise Your Skirts
      • 🐴Tiburon Handicap
      • 🐴Sausalito Stakes
      • 🐴Forty Niner Stakes
      • 🐴Stinson Beach Stakes
      • 🐴Oakland Stakes
      • 🐴Golden Gate Fields Sprint
      • 🐴Work the Crowd
      • 🐴Silveyville Stakes
      • 🐴Golden Nugget Stakes

Location and Access to the Racecourse

  • It is an American horse racing track straddling both Albany, California, and Berkeley, California, along the shoreline of San Francisco Bay adjacent to the Eastshore Freeway in the San Francisco Bay Area.
  • It is bordered by the Albany Bulb, Albany Beach,  and Albany Plateau on the North. To the east is Interstate 80, and to the south the Berkeley Meadow.
  • It is accessible from Gilman Street, Albany exits of the East shore Freeway, and adjacent city streets. 
  • Public Transportation
      • AC Transit provides a seasonal bus service, line 304, between the track and North Berkeley BART station until 2008.
      • East Shore Charter Lines started to provide the racetrack with a new free service from the BART station in 2009.
  • Single Stadium Seating or Box Seating
      • It costs $15 per person for 18 years old or above.
      • The package includes (1) Admission, (1) Club House Box Seating, (1) Daily Race Program, and (1) Self-Parking (if applicable).
      • Most boxes’ capacity is up to 8 adults.
  • Turf Club Admission
      • It costs $20 per person for 18 years old or above.
      • It is open in a limited capacity on Saturday, Sunday, and selected Holidays.
      • The package includes (1) Track Admission, (1) Turf Club Seating, (1) Daily Race Program, and (1) Self-Parking (if applicable).
  • Children under the age of 17 
    • FREE to enter the racetrack but should be accompanied by a paid adult admission.
    • They must have an “Add-on Ticket” with a valid paid adult ticket/reserved box seat on the same reservation. 


Other racetracks are sorted and listed on the page “List of Racetracks”. To view the full list, hit the button below. You can also check the horse racing types and breeds to have a lot more in-depth knowledge about horse racing. 

Golden Gate Fields

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