For many marking the start of the social season, the famous racing event that is an indisputable staple in England’s sporting calendar, returning again for fours days of prestigious jump racing in an exhilarating atmosphere. Sponsored by Magners, Cheltenham Festival runs from Tuesday 10 – Friday 13th March and is the set to be the most exciting, highly anticipated Jump racing event of the year. Cheltenham Racecourse will play host to 260,000 visitors and the absolute finest horses and jockeys, trainers and owners. What are they racing for? Awards, reputation – and over £4.5m worth of prize money.
Much like The Grand National, Cheltenham Festival is structured in 4 days. Day 1 is Champion Day. This is where all the racers will gather on the field and the excitement that has been building up all year will be released. This time in 2018, Nicky Henderson’s Buveur D’Air won honours for the Uninet Champion Hurdle “becoming the first horse since Hardy Eustace in 2004 and 2005 to retain the title”. What visitors can expect from Champion Day this year is seven top-notch, world-class Jump races, as well as live music, food, entertainment and shopping.
Day Two is the fun-loving Ladies’ Day, when the outfits are even more colourful and lively than the atmosphere of the festival. The tweed and trilbies will come out, drinks will be in hands, and the #ColourMeMarch competition will return, where men and women can be judged on their outfits with the chance of winning attractive prizes. This year, Cheltenham has announced model Frankie Herbert as its first ever Fashion Ambassador – don’t skip her guide to flawless festival style.
Day Three – St Patrick’s Thursday – celebrates all things Ireland. Head to the Guinness Village and enjoy drinks and live music, and watch more incredible jump racing. In between races, you can watch performances from some of the finest Irish folk bands.
Finally, the fourth day, and perhaps most exciting, is Gold Cup Day, where one world-class jump racer will be awarded the Cheltenham Gold Cup. Last year, this was won by the horse Al Boum Photo, ridden by Peter Townend and trained by Willie Mullins. The races on this day are the most fierce, with the end goal of winning the ultimate trophy and prize money.
Cheltenham Racecourse, Evesham Road, Cheltenham, GL50 4SH
10 – 13 March 2020
Get your tickets via thejockeyclub.co.uk
The Wheatsheaf Inn is a beautifully decorated former coaching inn, combining an informal, welcoming atmosphere with all the creature comforts of a luxurious hotel. A mere half-hour’s drive from Cheltenham Racecourse, it’s popular with the locals as well as visitors to the Cotswolds.
Doubles from £100