Harness racing has been going in Wales for over 100 years, traditionally raced on grass tracks. But they’re more dependant on the weather, so now there are four hard or all-weather tracks in the UK, two of which are in Wales – Ammanford Valley and Tir Prince in Towyn, the only full half-mile, floodlit hard track in the country. Tir Prince was a derelict piece of land in 1990 when it was constructed and we now hold 13 races a year, some of which go out live on Rasus on S4C.
The sport has been traditionally one for farmers in the UK – it was a relatively cheap sport for those who kept the odd horse and it was very much for amateurs. Now it’s been taken up by small businessmen or people who just love horses.
The late Billy Williams, father of current Tir Prince Director Adam Williams, set up Tir Prince over twenty years ago.
Billy was a driver himself – he became interested in Harness Racing in the 1950s whilst working at Pontins in Prestatyn where there was a track. He loved it so much that one day he went to the races in his Ford Cortina, swapped it for a horse and walked home with the horse! He’d fallen in love with the sport.
Check out their latest video highlighting their passion for the sport.