The Hippodrome

The idea of using the areas of the current Hippodrome for horse riding purposes came from the Prussian hussars in Gdańsk in the 1870’s. Initially, they used to organise their hunting runs there. Later on, horse races were more often organised there and in the last years of the 19th Century the races became a regular event. The race track was put in order, and special stands for spectators were constructed, and most of them have survived to this day. Horses were transported for each race and there was no need to build stables.

During the Free City period the venue flourished and became part of the Sopot health resort. Thanks to its location in the vicinity of a railway, the sea, and other attractions of the bathing resort, the horse racing track became more popular year by year among horse owners, riders and gamblers. Next to the classic races regular sporting events were also organised there, including showjumping and dressage.

The splendid history of the Hippodrome was abruptly broken by WWII. However, not later than just a few years after the war, seasonal races were revived, and lasted to the beginning of the eighties. Then the races stopped and Hippodrome’s functions gradually changed. First it turned into horse-training centre and a horseriding sports centre. The races came back to the track at the end of the nineties, after the Hippodrome was taken over by the City of Sopot. Ergo Arena, a new sports spectator hall, was constructed nearby, which increased the sporting value of the area. Today’s Hippodrome fulfils the joint purposes of horseracing track, training centre and the place where numerous horse riding lovers can learn how to cooperate with a horse. Regular sporting events occur at the Hippodrome, in particular showjumping competitions.

The Hippodrome is gradually becoming more important as an attraction in Sopot but also in the whole region. It is enjoying growing popularity among the locals and visitors as a venue for sporting competitions, races, horse recreation and hippotherapy. Everybody can find something of interest for themselves here.

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