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Stakes high at Aintree Ladies' Day

Prizes worth £26,000 are up for grabs at Aintree for the best dressed race-goer on Ladies' Day. Judges, including Liverpool 'X Factor' star Rebecca Ferguson, will adjudicate on the Style Awards. The winner will be given a Mini Cooper Roadster.

Organisers say they want to attract as many entries as possible. They have removed the requirement for contestants to register. Instead, giant frames will be placed around the course, with entrants invited to step into them to have their photos taken. Stylists will be on hand beside each frame to help ensure contestants are looking their best.

Ladies' Day will kick off with a new event, The Grand Women Summit. Over 120 delegates will meet to discuss women in business, racing and sport. Delegates will also be given a walk of the course, led by Irish Grand National winning jockey, Katie Walsh.

Aintree Racecourse has denied that photographers taking unflattering photos at Ladies' Day will be banned from the course. But they say they are asking the press to act responsibly and "respect the dignity" of people attending the event.

The major racing event of the festival, the Grand National, will take place on Saturday afternoon. Champion jockey A P McCoy is due to ride the favourite, Shutthefrontdoor, in his last Grand National before he retires.

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Survey of 7,000 racehorse owners puts Haydock top

Haydock Racecourse Credit: John Giles/PA Archive/Press Association Images
Betfair Chase Festival at Haydock Credit: John Giles/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Cue Card and Joe Tizzard on their way to victory in the Betfair Chase during the Betfair Chase Festival at Haydock Park Racecourse, Newton-le-Willows.

Bobs Worth and Barry Geraghty Credit: John Giles/PA Archive/Press Association Images

Bobs Worth and Barry Geraghty, the Cheltenham Gold Cup Winner, in the Betfair Chase during the Betfair Chase Festival at Haydock Park Racecourse in November 2013.

Racehorse Owners Association vote Haydock top

“We are delighted that jumps racehorse owners rate our racecourse so highly. The whole team goes out of its way to welcome owners to Haydock Park. Without racehorse owners, there would be no horse racing industry and we warmly welcome them as customers.

“If owners wish to run their horses at Haydock Park, then that’s great news for everyone, especially our spectators, because we want to put on the best sport that we possibly can. If owners enjoy themselves, then they and their horses will return again and again.”

– Garry Fortune, General Manager, Haydock Racecourse

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Concern over Aintree safety

Campaigners say they're still concerned over safety following the deaths of two horses at Aintree.

The League Against Cruel Sports is calling for organisers to bring the Grand National meeting to a halt.

Aintree in Liverpool - home of the Grand National. Credit: PA Images.

None of the 40 horses involved in this year's steeplechase died or wee seriously injured but Battlefront and Little Josh died in other races.

The animal welfare charity claims the total number of deaths during the three-day Aintree meeting is 40 since 2000.

24 horses have died on the Grand National course itself.

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