Getting Ready for the 2020 Cheltenham Festival 


It might take a few hours to get there by train from Kent (if you are lucky), but from 10
th-13th March the town of Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, receives global attention for the Cheltenham Festival. Tens of thousands of fans from across the UK and Ireland will travel to the four-day event, which has become one of the top sporting (and social) events in the UK calendar. Below we are going to provide a brief guide to everything you need to know about the Festival. 

Getting There: 

From Maidstone, it takes about four hours to get to Cheltenham by train with the journey time, including a couple of changes. National Express runs direct buses to the races, although it does take about five hours. Whichever mode of transport you decide on, it’s advisable to book early. 

Tickets: 

Tickets are relatively affordable for the Best Mate Enclosure, with prices around £40. Hospitality tickets go from £90 upwards. It’s always best to go with purchases from the Jockey Club, as the Racecourse management clamps down on touts

Coverage:

If you aren’t making the trip, ITV has live coverage of all four days of the Festival. The first race starts at 1.30 pm, with the final bit of action coming at 5.30 pm. 

Festival Overview:

Each day has seven races, punctuated by a feature race at 3.30 pm. Those are the Champion Hurdle (10th March), Champion Chase (11th), Stayers’ Hurdle (12th ) and Gold Cup (13th). Of the 28 races of the Festival, 14 are Grade 1 contests, meaning they are the very highest level of national hunt racing. 

Betting: 

There is, of course, plenty of betting across the four days, with millions spent on and off the track. If you want the complete picture, Freebets.com give you the full Cheltenham Festival betting guide for the 2020 event. However, we can list some of the early favourites for the big races: Epatante 3/1 for the Champion Hurdle, Altior 9/4 for the Champion Chase, Paisley Park 4/5 for the Stayers’ Hurdle and Al Boum Photo 4/1 for the Gold Cup (all odds sourced from Betfair). 

The 2020 Festival:

The main protagonist leading up to the 2020 festival is undoubtedly Altior, who is charging towards a third consecutive Champion Chase. He does, however, face some very stiff competition in the shape of Defi Du Seuil (2/1) and Chacun Pour Soi (11/4), both of whom are fancied to take the crown. Elsewhere, Al Boum Photo goes for a second Gold Cup, and there is also the resurgence of the great veteran Faugheen who goes into the Marsh Novices’ Chase as 6/1 favourite. 

Travel Tips: 

Cheltenham is a small town, and as you can imagine, hotels are at a premium during festival time. If you don’t want to brave the long trip back to Kent on the day, staying in Bristol or Birmingham is a good alternative. Both cities enjoy good transport links to and from Cheltenham. 

Racecourse Tips:

The racecourse is designed in such a manner that even the cheapest tickets provide an excellent view of the action. The issue actually comes with access to the bar, which can get incredibly busy. The solution lies in either upgrading your ticket or by timing your trips, so you don’t miss any of the action. 

And, One Last Reason to Go:

Cheltenham 2020 will probably be the last time we get to see Tiger Roll in action before he has his date with destiny at the Grand National. The two-time Aintree winner has history in his hands as he attempts to emulate the hat-trick of the great Red Rum. Catch him in the Cross Country Chase on 11th March before the world’s attention turns to the Grand National in April. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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