Chester Racecourse has been awarded a gold standard status for the ninth consecutive year.

The Roodee is among just 12 of the country’s 60 racecourses that has been awarded Gold Standard Status for 2016 by the Racehorse Owners Association (ROA).

It has also been named one of the country’s 12 best racecourses in Britain for its racehorse owners.

Chester was the first racecourse to be awarded the prestigious Large Racecourse of the Year Award at the Horseracing Awards of the ROA, when it launched last year.

As part of the competition, racecourses are divided into two categories including large and small.

The Roodee, which falls into the large racecourse category, was judged by ROA representatives on a range of factors including the quality of racing and attendance figures.

Richard Thomas, Chester Race Company CEO, said: “It is an important achievement for the Racecourse.

“Our objectives for visiting owners here at Chester are very much geared towards maximising experience and surpassing their expectations.

“We do this through ensuring we deliver an integral and rewarding service each and every raceday, whilst continually measuring our performance through direct feedback and open dialogue.

“Receiving the Gold Standard Award for nine consecutive years seems to suggest we’re getting it right.”

The 2016 Boodles Ladies Day at Chester Racecourse

Other large racecourses who were awarded Gold Standard include Ascot, Ayr, Cheltenham, Haydock Park and York.

One racecourse from each section will be named as their respective category’s ‘Racecourse of the Year’ at the annual ROA Horseracing Awards to be held in London on Thursday, December 1.

Alan Pickering, chairman of the ROA’s Raceday Committee, said: “The competitive nature of the new ROA Gold Standard Award scheme has been seen to good effect this year.

“Many of those courses that demonstrated excellence in 2015 have hit even higher heights this year, whilst other courses have upped their game considerably and it is pleasing to welcome some new award winners.

“The ROA survey in 2016 clearly showed the correlation between an owner’s race day experience and ownership retention levels and we look forward to working with those courses which do not meet the minimum requirements in 2017 and beyond.”

As part of the judging process, representatives from the ROA visited every racecourse in Britain to assess all aspects of the owners’ raceday experience.

Charlie Liverton, chief executive of the ROA, said: “The raceday experience is one of the most important aspects of the enjoyment of being a racehorse owner.

“The sport can endeavour to increase the number of racehorse owners only if they have a thoroughly enjoyable time on track, whether their horses are successful or not.

“We are committed to working closely with racecourses to ensure that owners are looked after in the best possible way.

“Our awards set the Gold Standard that all racecourses can aspire to and celebrate those which go the extra mile for owners.

“We are truly grateful to all those courses that place a special emphasis on owners and their horses.”

The Owners Experience at Chester Racecourse has also been shortlisted for an award at The Racecourse Association Showcase Awards, which will be held at Doncaster Racecourse on Thursday, November 17.