Banned old Duke of York – Historic racecourse ditches Andrew in latest blow


PRINCE ANDREW has been ditched by an historic racecourse in yet another blow for the embattled royal.

The Duke of York is to face a civil case over allegations he sexually assaulted Virginia Giuffre when she was 17, which he has vociferously denied, after a New York judge ruled the case could proceed to trail last week. Now, York Racecourse is set to rebrand one of its events in order to distance itself from the Prince.

Officials said that the Duke of York Stakes was never directly related to Price Andrew.

But the believed the branding needed to changed in order to make this fact “clearer”.

The event – a six-furlong sprint – is more than a century old and is contested on the opening day of the Dante Festival.

James Brennan, head of marketing at York Racecourse, explained how the name was originally decided in honour of the Queen’s grandfather.

Prince Andrew

Banned old Duke of York – Historic racecourse ditches Prince in latest blow. (Image: Getty)

Prince Andrew

Prince Andrew. (Image: Getty)

He said: “It was named in honour of Prince George who went on to become King George V.

“It has never been directly about Prince Andrew.”

That the name is not linked to Prince Andrew himself is not, however, enough to prevent connections being made with the current Duke of York, according to the racecourse management.

Mr Brennan said: “We are going to explore how we can make the name a lot clearer about its history – and that the name refers to an entirely different Duke of York.”

Prince Andrew and the Queen at the races

Prince Andrew and the Queen at the races. (Image: Getty)

Virginia Giuffre

Virginia Giuffre. (Image: Getty)

He added that rebranding was, in his view, an “appropriate step” given current allegations surrounding Prince Andrew.

But Mr Brennan conceded that renaming the event was not entirely in York Racecourse’s hands and would also require the involvement of external racing bodies.

This comes after the Queen stripped the Duke of York of his military titles and royal patronages.

Buckingham Palace said in a statement last week that Prince Andrew will continue in the case, brought against him by Virginia Giuffre, as a “private citizen”.

The Palace added: “With the Queen’s approval and agreement, The Duke of York’s military affiliations and Royal patronages have been returned to the Queen.

“The Duke of York will continue not to undertake any public duties and is defending this case as a private citizen.”

And it may not end there, with some royal experts convinced that Prince Andrew will be the last to hold the “Duke of York” title.

Prince Andrew

Prince Andrew. (Image: Getty)

Australian commentator Daniela Elser wrote in “I think we can confidently say the current Duke of York will also be the last.”

This, she said, is due to the title having become “poisonous” under Prince Andrew.


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