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The most important day in Doncaster’s social and sporting calendar is without a doubt the day of the St Leger, when crowds flock to the town to enjoy a day’s top quality racing. Horse racing and the St Leger are the subjects of many images in the collection of Doncaster Museum Service, but none capture the excitement of a day at the races as well as this picture. You can almost hear the roar of the crowd as the horses strain to reach the finishing line.
Simpson divides the painting up into horizontal sections, with the lush green turf of the course being framed by the packed crowds on either side. The general lack of colour in the spectators’ clothing adds to the apparent brightness of the grass, and focuses our attention on the race as it reaches its thrilling conclusion.
Finish of the 1931 St Leger
oil on canvas
H 100 x W 126 cm
DONMG : 65.31