Frequently Asked Questions
SANDY DID LITTLE DAMAGE the races are ON! Wear sensible shoes!
What kind of tickets do I need to attend?
Everyone attending needs a General Admission Badge (except for children 12 and under) for admission and every car coming on the grounds needs a parking pass. Many kinds of parking passes are available.
General Admission Parking allows parking in the general lot, with a walk to the infield of the racecourse. Children 12 and under do not need a General Admission pass.
Infield Parking allows non-reserved parking in the infield of the racecourse and reduces the length of the walk.
Reserved Parking – a number of reserved spaces are available; many are directly on the racecourse rail. They are different prices depending on the viewing on the racecourse; those closer to the finish line are a higher price. The Reserved Parking tickets come with 4 General Admission tickets.
What is your physical address?
11407 Constitution Highway, Montpelier Station, VA 22957
Gates open at 9 AM
Terrier Races begin at 10:30 AM
Stick Horse Races begin about 11:15
First Horse Race Post Time 12:30 PM
Last Race Post Time – approximate – 4:30 PM
Gates Close – 6:00PM
Can I bring a grill or have a contained fire?
No, the only grills allowed are small camping grills with a propane container that is no larger than a thermos.
What is the Endowed Reserved Space Program and how does it work?
For a one-time fee of $1,000 you can reserve the space of your choice, if not previously endowed, and enjoy first refusal on that space. The year you endow the space the $1,000 covers your purchase. In subsequent years you may pay the current rate and use your space or “release” if for sale to another patron. You must notify the Race Office by Labor Day to release your space.
Can I bring my own food?
Yes, absolutely, tailgating is a Montpelier Tradition. Please bring beer in non-glass containers and use plastic or paper drink cups. We have provided recycling containers and bags on the grounds, please use these only for glass, plastic and aluminum.
If I don’t bring food is it available?
Yes, there are food vendors on the grounds in Vendor’s Row.
Can I set up my own tent in my reserved space?
No, private tents are not allowed due to safety and viewing issues. The Race Stewards need to be able to see all areas of the racecourse.
How do I find my friends?
A map of the grounds is included in the Race program for sale on race day and the Reserved Parking spaces are listed alphabetically by the name requested by the space holder.
Can I bring my dog?
NO, no pets are allowed on the grounds and this rule is strictly enforced.
Are the races run in bad weather?
Yes, the races run rain or shine, there are no refunds.
What do I wear?
Generally afternoon dress is prevalent. Those in Reserved Spaces and in Tents on Corporate row dress in sport coats and ties, sweaters and collared shirts for men, women will feel comfortable in business casual attire, long skirts, pants, flat shoes and hats are a tradition, especially in sunny weather. Layering is suggested for fall days that start cool and end up milder.
Can I visit James Madison’s home?
Yes, the Mansion is open to race goers and other visitors on race day at a greatly reduced rate. See www.montpelier.org for more information about what you will see at the Mansion.
When do the races start? What time can I come?
Gates open at 9:00 AM and the first event is the Jack Russell Terrier Races. The first horse race begins at 12:30 PM and the last race generally concludes around 4:30 PM. The grounds close at 6PM.
Are souvenirs available?
Yes, posters and merchandise like T-shirts, caps and sweatshirts with the race logo are available for sale in the Montpelier Museum Shop tent. A wide array of vendors provide interesting shopping on Vendor’s Row as well, a good time to start your holiday shopping.
Are there restrooms available?
Portable restrooms are located strategically throughout the grounds. Handicapped equipment stations are indicated on the map in your program.
With the mansion’s architectural restoration complete, come witness the investigation, discovery, and installation of Madison furnishings and décor. Watch as curators bring James and Dolley Madison’s home back to life.
Poster Art Info
This year’s poster art is by Virginia artist, Sandy Lawrence. This highly detailed pencil drawing shows Marion duPont Scott’s horse, Battleship, leading over Becher’s Brook in the Grand National on March 25, 1938. This year marks the 75th anniversary of his Grand National win which put him down in the record books as the first American bred and American owned horse to win the Grand National. He is still the smallest horse to ever win, with the youngest jockey, Bruce Hobbs who was only 17.
This win catapulted Marion duPont Scott and her Montpelier Racing stable into international fame. See more about the story on this website at Story of Battleship page.
Sandy Lawrence’s art education was with the community of artists of Virginia. She studied decorative arts at Ina Marx’s Finishing School in Great Neck, NY and her work is represented in many homes in Virginia as well as Mary Baldwin College and the National Paint and Coatings Association in DC. She lives in Charlottesville and is pursuing her love of portraiture.