Cheltenham Racecourse – all roads lead to the Cheltenham Festival

Say the word Cheltenham to any horse racing fan and they’ll immediately refer to the four-day meeting that takes place in March. The Cheltenham Festival is the star attraction on the National Hunt racing calendar, with hundreds of thousands of racegoers attending the Cotswolds course and watching high quality racing.

Ante Post Races

DateRace
15/03 1:30 PMSupreme Novices HurdleAll OddsAll Odds
15/03 2:10 PMArkle ChaseAll OddsAll Odds
15/03 3:30 PMChampion HurdleAll OddsAll Odds
15/03 4:10 PMMares HurdleAll OddsAll Odds
15/03 5:30 PMNational Hunt ChaseAll OddsAll Odds
16/03 1:30 PMBallymore Novices HurdleAll OddsAll Odds
16/03 2:10 PMFestival Novices ChaseAll OddsAll Odds
16/03 3:30 PMQueen Mother Champion ChaseAll OddsAll Odds
16/03 4:10 PMCross Country Handicap ChaseAll OddsAll Odds
16/03 5:30 PMChampion BumperAll OddsAll Odds
17/03 1:30 PMMarsh Novices ChaseAll OddsAll Odds
17/03 2:50 PMRyanair ChaseAll OddsAll Odds
17/03 3:30 PMStayers HurdleAll OddsAll Odds
17/03 4:50 PMMares Novice HurdleAll OddsAll Odds
18/03 1:30 PMTriumph HurdleAll OddsAll Odds
18/03 2:50 PMAlbert Bartlett Novices HurdleAll OddsAll Odds
18/03 3:30 PMCheltenham Gold CupAll OddsAll Odds
18/03 4:50 PMMares ChaseAll OddsAll Odds

Cheltenham racecourse is also known as Prestbury Park and is situated in Gloucestershire, with the beautiful Cleeve Hill providing a stunning backdrop. The Cheltenham track doesn’t have many flat parts and tends to be undulating all the way round, with the finish on a steep hill that often provides excitement.

The Cheltenham Festival is THE Festival

Everyone loves Cheltenham and it immediately becomes a talking point as soon as the National Hunt season is underway. The Cheltenham Festival takes place during March and starts with Day One on the Tuesday of the meeting where you’ll find races such as the Champion Hurdle, Arkle Chase and Supreme Novices’ Hurdle.

Day Two is Queen Mother Champion Chase Day where some of the best two-milers in the land compete in the showcase race, with champions such as Moscow Flyer, Azertuiop and Altior having triumphed in recent years, while who can forget the formidable comeback from Sprinter Sacre.

On the Thursday of the meeting, we have Day Three and that means the Stayers’ Hurdle along with the Ryanair Chase. The Stayers’ race is a gruelling three-mile slog around the difficult Cheltenham track, although we’ve seen horses such as Big Buck’s, Inglis Drever and Barracuda provide legendary moments in this race.

Every race at Cheltenham features a high-class field, with owners, trainers and jockeys all keen to get a runner at the Festival and getting a winner is a massive bonus.

The Cheltenham Gold Cup is a Huge Race

While the first three days of the Cheltenham Festival are special, the fourth day of the meeting is Gold Cup day and we get record attendances at Prestbury Park as a result. The Gold Cup is regarded as the ultimate test of chasing over a long distance and attracts the leading horses that have performed during that particular season.

The Cheltenham Gold Cup is second only to the Grand National in terms of National Hunt prestige although the former is regarded as a truer race than the forty-runner equivalent over the Aintree obstacles.

Punters enjoying betting on the Gold Cup on Day Four of the meeting, with the Triumph Hurdle another highlight race on this final day of the action. The Cheltenham Festival was previously a three-day meeting that took place between Tuesday – Thursday, although organisers then made a decision to increase this to four days which incorporated the Friday.

Key Horse Races at Cheltenham Racecourse

There are high quality meetings that take place at Cheltenham all year round and especially during the months of the National Hunt season. There’s a New Year’s Day meeting at Prestbury Park where racegoers can celebrate the new year by watching races such as the Dipper Novices’ Chase and Relkeel Hurdle.

With the Cheltenham Festival taking place in March, it naturally follows that there will be a Trials Day leading up to the big meeting and that also takes place in January, with many horses having their prep race at the unique course before getting ready to run two months later.

Trials day includes races such as the Juveniles Novices’ Hurdle, Murphy Group Chase, Cotswold Chase, Cleeve Hurdle and Classic Novices’ Hurdle. Many of these races are Grade 2 affairs and we will see eventual Cheltenham Festival winners come from these races, particularly English winners.

After the Cheltenham Festival, there is the April meeting where racegoers can enjoy a more civilised atmosphere than the Festival, with the Silver Trophy Chase chiefly among the races.

Racegoers Flock to Cheltenham in November and December

There’s some fantastic autumn and winter horse racing that takes place at Cheltenham during the end of the calendar year and effectively midway through the National Hunt season.

During November, there is the BetVictor Gold Cup meeting which is run over two miles and four furlongs. It is accompanied on the same card by the BetVictor Handicap Chase and there are also races such as the Greatwood Hurdle, November Novices’ Chase and Sharp Novices’ Hurdle.

In December, there is also a high-class meeting and it features the December Gold Cup along with the International Hurdle. As with the Trials Day, you will often get quality horses in attendance which will use these races as a stepping stone to win at the Cheltenham Festival.