WE are now in the heart of our summer season of racing and events.

Last Saturday, just under 8,000 people packed into Chepstow to see Madness play live after racing. The band played through their vast array of hits from the last 40 years and turned in another excellent performance. They have definitely become one of those iconic English bands with a repertoire that has stood the test of time.

We were delighted with the high attendance. It means that just under 16,000 people have seen Madness in South Wales in the last fortnight following their show at Ffos Las, near Llanelli, on May Bank Holiday weekend.

Our next music race night is Ladies Evening on Friday, 12th July when All Saints are playing live. All Saints have sold ten million records worldwide and have had five number one hits. Their song “Never Ever” is the second best-selling girl group single of all time in the UK, behind the Spice Girls single “Wannabe”. We are looking forward to welcoming them to Monmouthshire.

Another attraction on Ladies Evening is the first prize of £1000 for the Best Dressed Lady.

The feature race last Saturday at Chepstow was The Michael Maine Memorial Handicap Stakes, the race is run in memory of Michael, from Shirenewton, who sadly passed away in 2016. There was no better winner than locally trained Bungee Jump who made all the running and was never headed to score for trainer Grace Harris.

Michael’s wife, Sue, has horses in training with Grace so it was lovely to see the memorial trophy presented to the winning connections. Bungee Jump, a four-year-old bay filly, is no stranger to the Winners’ Enclosure at Chepstow having won twice previously at the track.

Grace said after the race that Bungee Jump will now be heading to Ireland to run in a valuable race at the end of this month.

This Friday at Chepstow we have our Gin & Jazz Raceday where local Jazz band the Hipcats will be performing throughout the day, there will also be a wide selection of gins to try. There are seven races from 1.40pm.

We also have a ‘2-4-1’ Raceday on Monday, 24th June, where, if bought in advance, it is only £10 to come into the racecourse. More details are on the website or from the Racecourse Office on 01291 622260. There are also fantastic hospitality offers available.