The Festival 14-17 March 2017

Cheltenham Festival ‘Jewel in the Crown’ of National Hunt Jump Racing

Few sporting occasions offer more excitement than the Cheltenham Festival Jump Racing extravaganza that takes place in March each year.  Nothing in racing compares to the collective rush of adrenaline and the roar of the crowd at the start of the first race of each Cheltenham Festival. Spread out over 4 action-packed days of superb racing, with a feature Championship race scheduled as race 4 on each day’s racecard, each of the 4 Cheltenham Festival days delivers its own unique atmosphere and excitement.

Cheltenham Festival is most famous for the Gold Cup race; the world’s most prestigious National Hunt race which takes place on Day 4 of the Festival at Cheltenham Racecourse and the highlight of the Jump racing season. The Cheltenham Festival Gold Cup roll of honour reads like the ‘who’s who’ of racing including KAUTO STAR, DENMAN, 3-time winner BEST MATE, ARKLE, GOLDEN MILLER & MILL HOUSE. With a £475,000 prize fund the Gold Cup is the UK’s most valuable non-handicap chase. Run since 1819 when SPECTRE won 100 guineas by coming first over a 3-mile flat course on Cleeve Hill overlooking the Racecourse – the Gold Cup changed from a flat to a jump race in 1924 when a prize of £685 was awarded RED SPLASH; the first winner over jumps.

Cheltenham Festival Day 1

DAY 1: CHAMPION DAY

Day 1 of The Festival has 3 big races on the card: the Supreme Novices Hurdle,  the The Arkle Chase and the Champion Hurdle, won in 2016 by Annie Power in a course record time to became the first mare since Flakey Dove in 1994 to win it and only the fourth in the race’s history.

Cheltenham Festival Day 2

DAY 2: LADIES DAY

Day 2 of the Festival features the 2 mile Queen Mother Champion Chase, won for the second time in 2016 by Sprinter Sacre, sadly now retired, marking him as one of the all-time greats. Ladies Day also features the best dressed lady competition.

Day3-stPatricks-Day

DAY 3: ST PATRICK’S THURSDAY

Celebrate St Patrick’s Day on Day 3 of The Festival. With plenty of Guinness on tap and Irish music to get you in the mood for all the on-course including the two big races the Ryanair Chase and The Sun Bets Stayers’ Hurdle – won in 2016 by Thistlecrack.

Cheltenham Festival Day 4

DAY 4: GOLD CUP DAY

Day 4 features the Cheltenham Gold Cup, won by the 9/4 favourite Don Cossack finishing 4 ½ lengths ahead of Djakadam and Don Poli, a further 10 lengths behind. The Triumph Hurdle and Albert Bartlett Hurdle are also really good races on Day 4 of the Cheltenham Festival.

Cheltenham Racecourse logo

CHELTENHAM RACECOURSE Gloucestershire

Racecourse Information

Cheltenham Racecourse, known as the ‘Home of Jump Racing’, has given so many great memories to race fans all over the world. All of the 13 Grade 1 races held at the track are done so during the world famous Cheltenham Festival in March, an event which draws hundreds of thousands of spectators each year who have been lucky enough to witness some of jump racing’s greatest triumphs.

The racecourse is set in a natural amphitheater in the shadow of Cleeve Hill, close to the village of Prestbury in the Gloucestershire Cotswolds. The setting gives the racecourse a fantastic atmosphere, most notably the famous ‘Cheltenham Roar’ at the start and end of each race.

Flat horse racing at Cheltenham began in 1815, and at the current Prestbury Park site since 1831, with the addition of Steeplechasing at the course in 1898. The racecourse has had more than £80 million invested in racegoer and other facilities over the past 30+ years. Development of the original main grandstand was begun in 1979. The Panoramic Restaurant was added in 1997, followed by the Best Mate Enclosure and The Centaur conference & events facility in 2004.

In 2013, conscious of relentless competition from other sports and recent redevelopments at Ascot, Newmarket and York Racecourses, plus a planned major redevelopment at Newbury Racecourse, Cheltenham announced plans for a further £45 million investment in a state-of-the-art new grandstand. The spectacular new grandstand provides improved facilities for spectators, new views over the paddock and enhanced accommodation for owners and trainers.

Cheltenham Racecourse hosts 16 race-days over the winter between October and April. The highlight of the National Hunt Calendar is the Cheltenham Festival , featuring the World Hurdle, Champion Hurdle, Champion Bumper, Champion Chase and the Gold Cup. The other big race meetings at Cheltenham Racecourse include The Open in November, The International in December and Festival Trials Day in January.

Address: Cheltenham Racecourse, Evesham Road, Prestbury, Cheltenham, GL50 4SH
Tel: 0844 579 3003
Website: http://www.cheltenham.co.uk
Email: cheltenham@thejockeyclub.co.uk
Admission: Varies according to meeting. Under 18s are admitted free, except at The Festival
Road: 1 mile north of the town off the A435
Rail: To Cheltenham Spa station, taxi or bus to course
Car park: £10 at The Festival, £5 on Open Saturday. Free at other meetings

With a capacity for 67,500 spectators each day and some 230,000 spectators over the 4 days of the Cheltenham Festival, estimated gate receipts total around £7 million. Gold Cup Day is especially popular with the Irish who cross the water to attend Cheltenham Festival in their thousands. The famous rivalry between British and Irish horses contributes to the atmosphere.

The Cheltenham Festival is the pinnacle meeting on the National Hunt calendar and vitally important to UK racing. £600 million will be wagered on racing during the Cheltenham Festival. Without Cheltenham, Jump Racing simply wouldn’t be the same. Betting on all 27 Cheltenham Festival races is followed by thousands of racing enthusiasts. The volume of bets wagered during the Festival is staggering, with millions of pounds changing hands between bookmakers and punters on every race.

Experience for yourself the roar of the crowd on Champion Day with the Champion Hurdle, the glamour of Ladies’ Day and the Queen Mother Champion Chase, the ‘craic’ of St Patrick’s Thursday and the incredible finale of the big feature race on Day 4 of the Cheltenham Festival; the Cheltenham Gold Cup. For The Open Saturday and over the four days of The Festival, Cheltenham operates three separate enclosures – Club, Tattersalls and Best Mate. Detailed below are the facilities that are available in the three different enclosures.

Club Tattersalls Best Mate
Views opposite the finishing line  X  X  X
Covered grandstand  X  X  X
Access to food outlets  X  X  X
Access to bars  X  X  X
Betting facilities  X  X  X
Access to disabled facilities  X  X  X
WiFi  X  X  X
Side view of the final furlong  X  X
Side view of the final fence/furlong  X  X
Covered grandstand seating  X  X
View of the pre-parade paddock, paddock and winner’s enclosure  X  X
Access to the tented village  X  X
Access to Guinness Village (festival only)  X  X
Access to themes and children’s entertainment  X  X
Access to Final Flight Bar  X
Access to Quevega’s (tapas and wine bar)  X
Dress code – see website for details  X
Access to restaurants  X
Access to the centre of the racecourse  X
Access to Vesty Bar in The Princess Royal Stand  X
Access to Big Buck’s Champagne Bar in The Princess Royal Stand  X
Access to steps on the front of The Princess Royal Stand  X
Head-on views of the racecourse  X

Enclosures & Stands

There are 3 main enclosures to choose from with different ticket prices. These give you access to different enclosures around Cheltenham racecourse. The more you pay for your Cheltenham Festival tickets, the less crowded the enclosure and the better the view of the racecourse.

There are plenty of mobile catering units in all enclosures, which do change from meeting to meeting, but typically offer fare such as fish and chips, hog roasts, burgers and hots dogs, sandwiches, teas and coffees and doughnuts. In addition there are a number of bars that offer food in addition to drinks. Please note that the food served may change from meeting to meeting, with the latest details contained in the official racecard each day:

BEST MATE ENCLOSURE

Best Mate Enclosure is situated is opposite the main grandstand with extensive betting facilities. Views of the racing are good, but as tickets are cheaper here it is also the most crowded and views of the finishing straight can be difficult. There is a variety of food and drink facilities including full draught bar facilities in the Desert Orchid and Dawn Run bars in the betting hall + Tea and coffee, sandwiches, Cornish Pasties, Burgers and chips, Toasted Sandwiches and a Carvery. Additional facilities within the Best Mate Enclosure include music during and after racing.

TATTERSALLS ENCLOSURE

Tattersalls Enclosure is situated within the grandstand providing tiered steps for an improved view of the course plus access to the paddock & winning enclosure. There are plenty of eating facilities, bars and access to betting. Tattersalls racegoers also have access to the Centaur, Paddock and unsaddling enclosure, Hall of Fame, trade stands in the Tented Village and to bookmakers in the betting ring. Tattersalls Enclosure food & drink outlets include the Pre-Parade Ring , North Entrance, Guinness Village, See You Then Bar, Winged Ox Bar & Terrace, The Centaur, Festive Bowl and Sovereign Bar.

CLUB ENCLOSURE

Club Enclosure is the most exclusive enclosure with the best viewing and refreshment facilities. Situated within the main grandstand you get the best views of the finishing line, the paddock, winning enclosure and out onto the beautiful Cotswold hills in the distance. Club Enclosure food & drink facilities all those within Tattersalls, plus the Mandarin Bar, Tommy Atkins Grill, Final Flight Bar, Quevega’s Bar, Arkle Bar, Golden Miller Champagne Bar and the Cottage Rake Bar all of which also serve food to go. The Final Flight Bar has fast become the post-racing destination at Cheltenham. The Final Flight Bar is open on all four days of The Festival and continues until 7.30pm. There is live music to keep the party flowing and a cocktail bar. The perfect way to end a day at Cheltenham.

TATTERSALLS  AND CLUB ENCLOSURE TICKET HOLDERS

Racegoers also have access to the Centaur, Paddock and unsaddling enclosure, the Hall of Fame, trade stands in the Tented Village and Guinness Village near the final fence, where extra viewing steps, bars, bands and entertainment are provided. Access to all betting ring bookmakers. Located opposite the Mandarin Restaurant in the Club Enclosure, the AP McCoy wall celebrates the historic achievement of this legendary jockey. Signed by thousands the wall is a unique feature of Cheltenham racecourse.

FINAL FLIGHT BAR

The Final Flight Bar has fast become the post-racing destination at Cheltenham. The Final Flight Bar is open on all four days of the Cheltenham Festival and continues until 7.30pm with live music after racing from the Chip Shop Boys to keep the party flowing and a full cocktail bar offering premium products. The perfect way to end a day at Cheltenham. There is a charge for admission and tickets must be bought in advance online. Available to Club Badge holders only.

Cheltenham Hospitality

PANORAMIC RESTAURANT

Situated on the fifth level of the grandstand overlooking the Winning Post, Cheltenham’s premier restaurant provides the most stunning views over the racecourse. Seated at your table you can enjoy first-class cuisine, excellent table service, totepool betting and a spectacular view of the racing action. Available at all fixtures.

GOLD CUP RESTAURANT

Located close to the Hall of Fame, the popular Gold Cup Restaurant offers family and friends a great value day out. An ideal base for the day, with easy access to the main viewing grandstand. Please note that this facility is not course facing.

FINAL FENCE RESTAURANT

This elegant, modern restaurant is situated at the heart of The Village, next to the buzzing Guinness Village and as its name suggests, overlooks the final fence the horses jump before racing up the hill to the Winning Post. Positioned on the second floor, it offers a buffet lunch with numerous food options for guests to enjoy.

ISTABRAQ RESTAURANT

The Istabraq Restaurant is a stylish and modern facility. Located in the heart of The Centaur near the Hall of Fame, it provides easy access to the main grandstand viewing area and betting ring.

THE FESTIVAL RESTAURANT

This newly refurbished restaurant is located close to the Hall of Fame and next to the Gold Cup Restaurant, providing an excellent base for the day with easy access to the main grandstand. Please note that this facility is not course facing.

CHAMPIONS WALK RESTAURANT

After the success of last year, the Champions Walk Restaurant returns to The Festival. Located opposite the horse walk, offering fabulous views of the horses as they move between the Parade Ring and the course, the menu at the Champions Walk Restaurant is full of quality, local ingredients in a modern and fresh environment.
All the dishes are served as grazing and bowl food.

HORSESHOE PAVILION RESTAURANT

With a sophisticated feel, the Horseshoe Pavilion Restaurant retains its status as Cheltenham’s premier restaurant in the Tented Village. Located near to the Parade Ring and main viewing areas. Please note that this facility is not course facing.

MOSCOW FLYER RESTAURANT

The perfect atmosphere for anybody looking to be in the heart of the action. Located close to the Guinness Village, this facility provides a cost effective way to enjoy excellent food with a base for the day. Please note that this facility is not course facing.

DON COSSACK RESTAURANT

Offering fantastic value for money, Denman Drive is situated next to the vibrant Guinness Village, a must do for many of those attending The Festival

PADDOCK VIEW RESTAURANT

Located next to the Pre Parade Ring and overlooking the Paddock, this elegant marquee provides a great and accessible base from which to enjoy the day.

CHALETS AND PRIVATE BOXES

Be at the heart of the action, adjacent to the parade ring in a chalet, or take in the breaktaking panorama of the course from a box. Located in the Long Run boxes and overlooking the final two fences of the course, the Cleeve Suite serves a delicious four course lunch to enjoy whilst taking in the breath-taking views of Cleeve Hill.

CLEEVE SUITE RESTAURANT

Located in the Long Run boxes and overlooking the final two fences of the course, the Cleeve Suite serves a delicious four course lunch to enjoy whilst taking in the breath-taking views of Cleeve Hill.

CHEZ ROUX RESTAURANT

Chez Roux at Cheltenham can be found on the third floor of the Long Run boxes, with a balcony from which guests can enjoy the view of the horses thundering up the hill on their way to victory. The stunning backdrop of Cleeve Hill tops off what has to be one of the best views in British sport.

Cheltenham Racecourse - Old and New Racetracks

Cheltenham is considered a stiff, tricky racecourse due to its undulations and big fences, providing an extreme physical challenge for competitors. Both Old &New courses feature well-built fences that demand jumping ability. The courses are hilly with a steep uphill run in to the finishing line of around 240 metres, that can often result in a leading runner being caught by a fast finisher.

Cheltenham Old Course

Cheltenham Old Course – Click to enlarge

OLD COURSE

The Old Course is 1m 4f long and is used for the Showcase meeting in October, the Open meeting in November (including the Paddy Power Gold Cup) and the first two days of March Cheltenham Festival for the Champion Hurdle, Queen Mother Champion Chase, Supreme Novices’ Hurdle, Arkle Chase, Neptune Novices’ Hurdle and RSA Chase.

The course runs left-handed and is undulating, testing and stamina sapping, with an uphill climb as the course turns away from the stands, then a downhill section along the back straight before a stiff climb up to the highest part of the track at the furthest point from the stands. The Old Course runs around the outside of the New Course down the back and undulations require a horse to be balanced, as it needs to jump uphill and downhill, plus whilst on the turn.

The main difference is that the Old Course swings away from the New Course earlier along the back straight, meaning that it is far tighter and quite a bit sharper. The Old Course swings into the finish straight and has around 2f to the winning post up the ‘Cheltenham Hill’.

Cheltenham New Course - click to enlarge

Cheltenham New Course – click to enlarge

NEW COURSE

Racing is staged on the New Course for the December International Gold Cup meeting, the New Year’s Day meeting, end January Festival Trials Day and the last two days of the March Cheltenham Festival, including the Cheltenham Gold Cup run over 3 miles 2½ furlongs with 22 fences, plus the World Hurdle, Triumph Hurdle and Ryanair Chase. The New Course is also used for the April Meeting and the final meeting of the year at the end of April or start of May.

The New Course is slightly longer at 1m 5f and was introduced at the 1967 Festival. The new course has has a tricky downhill fence and a longer steeplechase run-in than the Old Course.

The New Course tends to be more galloping and stamina sapping, with a longer climb up the back straight to the highest point and also a longer climb up the “Cheltenham Hill” on the finish straight.

The galloping nature of the hurdles course on the New Course plus the distance between each hurdle does tend to suit ex-flat horses. The New Course has nearly 3f to the finish line once the horses swing into the straight. You will often see horses held up and coming from off the pace up the hill, as those in front tire and fall back.

CROSS COUNTRY COURSE

The unique Cross Country Steeplechase course runs for 3m 7f in the centre of both ovals of the Cheltenham old and new tracks, twisting and turning over banks, ditches and rails. The Cross Country was introduced in 1985 as part of the Glenfarclas Series of races and there are three races held at Cheltenham at the November Open, the December International and March Festival.




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14 hours ago

Cheltenham Racecourse
Supreme of chicken, braised British beef, or wild mushroom and spinach pudding? Chocolate and salted caramel torte, or lemon infused treacle tart? Tough decisions need to be made at our Big Office Christmas Party chelt.co/eXCZAc

Supreme of chicken, braised British beef, or wild mushroom and spinach pudding? Chocolate and salted caramel torte, or lemon infused treacle tart? Tough decisions need to be made at our Big Office Christmas Party chelt.co/eXCZAc ... See MoreSee Less

16 hours ago

Cheltenham Racecourse
Were busy at the racecourse this week, packing Memberships for 2017/18 - it wont be long until these badges will be returning to us frequently as our Members enjoy every fixture! http://chelt.co/Membership

We're busy at the racecourse this week, packing Memberships for 2017/18 - it won't be long until these badges will be returning to us frequently as our Members enjoy every fixture! chelt.co/Membership ... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

Just get my tickets for the week of the festival sent to me and I'll be a happy man 🐴🎉🍺🙌💰

That looks super organised! 😊

Happy days

So excited...Yellow and green 😁😁😁😁😁😁😁

Paul Kear

Tom Weeks

Mags Hughes

Coralie Obrey

Carly Thomas Was Waters

Robert Dalziel

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19 hours ago

Cheltenham Racecourse
The McCoys South West Jumps Awards night is proving very popular - with limited availability on tickets, buy now to ensure you dont miss out on this glittering night, mingling with racings heroes chelt.co/McCoysAwards18

The McCoys South West Jumps Awards night is proving very popular - with limited availability on tickets, buy now to ensure you don't miss out on this glittering night, mingling with racing's heroes chelt.co/McCoysAwards18 ... See MoreSee Less

Did you know we have two comedy events coming up this year? Tickets make the perfect gift for those tricky-to-buy-for friends and family chelt.co/JonRichardson chelt.co/JoelDommett

Did you know we have two comedy events coming up this year? Tickets make the perfect gift for those tricky-to-buy-for friends and family chelt.co/JonRichardson chelt.co/JoelDommett ... See MoreSee Less

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Becky Stanton

Monday blues? Were employing! Be in on the action and join us at Cheltenham Racecourse for the racing season as a Regional Digital Marketing Executive chelt.co/careers

Monday blues? We're employing! Be in on the action and join us at Cheltenham Racecourse for the racing season as a Regional Digital Marketing Executive chelt.co/careers ... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

Good luck hope you get some good people DJ's Private Hire

Steve Mullington

Katie Preece

Our Events Team are experienced at hosting events with racedays of up 75,000 attendees. That kind of experience has helped us create such successful events... http://chelt.co/yQpaVZ

Our Events Team are experienced at hosting events with racedays of up 75,000 attendees. That kind of experience has helped us create such successful events... chelt.co/yQpaVZ ... See MoreSee Less

Friday feeling, or Friday flop? Were employing! Cheltenham Racecourse are seeking a Regional Digital Marketing Executive on a 6 month fixed term contract - join us for the racing season chelt.co/careers

Friday feeling, or Friday flop? We're employing! Cheltenham Racecourse are seeking a Regional Digital Marketing Executive on a 6 month fixed term contract - join us for the racing season chelt.co/careers ... See MoreSee Less

Were employing! Cheltenham Racecourse are seeking a Regional Digital Marketing Executive on a 6 month fixed term contract - join us for the racing season chelt.co/careers

We're employing! Cheltenham Racecourse are seeking a Regional Digital Marketing Executive on a 6 month fixed term contract - join us for the racing season chelt.co/careers ... See MoreSee Less

Were curious... What is the most youve saved thanks to Rewards4Racing, and what did you spend your points on?
https://www.rewards4racing.com/?utm_source=social_cheltenham&utm_medium=partner

We're curious... What is the most you've saved thanks to Rewards4Racing, and what did you spend your points on?
www.rewards4racing.com/?utm_source=social_cheltenham&utm_medium=partner
... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

£115 paid for all 4 days of cheltenham festival 2018 in best mate side as soon as tickets came out - happy days

£255 which will be used against this year's membership renewal 😉

Usually pays for a gold package at Paddy Power and a day at Aintree

Tend to save money off my membership normally quite a decent chunk of it

Got nearly £600 now will be spent on a bit of corporate at Aintree on Ladies day

About to pay all of this years membership with it!

Got about £13 on it will be req for Festival time

£400.. All gone on festival tickets!

Save mine for the Cheltenham festival

Festival tix

£70.00 paid for cheltenham best mate tickets this year

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