The Cheltenham Festival- A British Institution
Set in the lush Gloucestershire countryside and with picturesque views as far as the eye can see, Cheltenham racecourse is the perfect location for the most popular national hunt horse racing festival in the United Kingdom.
Beginning on March 11th and lasting for four days, the 2014 Cheltenham Festival will include 27 races featuring the very best racehorses from across the globe. The prize money on offer at the festival is astronomical, with millions of pounds going to the race winners, as well as many more millions changing hands in the betting areas.
The festival is always extremely well attended, with over 200,000 fans expected to pass through the entrance over the course of the four days. Wearing their best suits and ready to take on the bookies, many of the fans will have travelled from overseas to witness the world’s premier jumps racing festival first-hand.
The most famous race of the entire festival is the Cheltenham Gold Cup, which takes place on the fourth and final day. Entrants will run over a distance of just under 3 and a half miles, with 22 fences to jump along the way; a unique test a stamina and speed. The current favourite is last year’s winner, Bobs Worth, who is a 7/4 favourite with Coral.
One of Bobs Worth’s main challengers would have been cue card, trained by Colin Tizzard, who won last year’s Ryanair Chase. Unfortunately Cue Card trainer Tizzard revealed that his champion horse is injured for this year’s festival and will not race. The good news for the neaturals is that this had blown the field wide open and judging by the latest odds the Cheltenham Gold Cup is now any ones to win.
Another challenger may be Silviniaco Conti, who is available at 3/1. This will be a renewal of a Gold Cup battle from last year, with Silviniaco Conti hoping he can turn the tables on Bobs Worth this time. Whoever may emerge as the eventual winner, their name will go down in history alongside some of the greatest race horses of all time.
For those travelling from overseas, Cheltenham is best served by air by either Birmingham International Airport, or Manchester Airport. Both are well connected to Cheltenham via a short train journey, with the racecourse then a short two mile trip from Cheltenham train station.
Those looking for a classic British sporting occasion should look no further than the Cheltenham Festival, with four action packed days sure to entertain everyone.