Cheltenhamfestival.net is your complete guide to the Cheltenham Festival and an indispensable aid to finding the winners of some of the most prestigious and competitive horse races run anywhere in the world.
The 27 races that make up the Cheltenham Festival are the most hotly contested of the entire racing calendar, with around 500 horses competing for over £6.12 million of win and place prize money which compete only with the Grand National in terms of prestige in the jump racing calendar.
Whatever the weather, spring arrives in Gloucestershire on the first Tuesday of the Festival. Helicopters clatter in over Cleeve Hill, the first of 200,000 pints of Guinness are sunk and spectators roar off the start of the first race at the Cheltenham Festival. That now traditional roar is an outpouring of a range of emotions from the relief of the racing community that Cheltenham has finally come round again, to the exhilaration of the crowd at the thought of what lies ahead - four days of high drama, effort and excess that will test both wallets and livers.
The week climaxes with the Cheltenham Gold Cup on Friday, while other highlights include Tuesday's Champion Hurdle, Wednesday's Queen Mother Champion Chase and the World Hurdle on Thursday.
The clash between the top English and Irish horses is what makes the Festival for many and the biggest cheers are almost always reserved for the Irish-trained winners, many of whom are well-backed. Certainly, the Festival would certainly not be the same without the Irish punters, who revel in taking on the Cheltenham bookmakers in their great annual pilgrimage to the Gloucestershire countryside.
All spectators will be able to recall their favourite Festival race. Perhaps the older ones were there for the epic Gold Cup contests in the 1960s between the incomparable Arkle and brave Mill House; others will have marvelled at Dawn Run - the only racehorse to have completed the Champion Hurdle - Gold Cup double (in 1984 and 1986 respectively). Many will look back with fondness to the popular grey Desert Orchid’s Gold Cup triumph in 1989 or, more recently, Best Mate’s third Gold Cup in 2004 and Moscow Flyer's second Queen Mother Champion Chase in 2005, whilst Kauto Star's triumphant second Cheltenham Gold Cup in 2009 will also rank highly for many.
Our site contains everything you need to know about these four magical days in March, when the whole racing community converges on Prestbury Park for the Olympics of National Hunt racing:
Reviews: We review every race at the Cheltenham Festival for the last few years. Each race page on the site records how the races unfolded and our take on the performances of note.
Previews: Read our Cheltenham Festival betting previews, with an in-depth analysis of each contest - providing invaluable guidance on finding the Cheltenham Festival winners. Best of all, our Cheltenham Festival tips are completely free.
Of course, you can then decide whether to follow our advice or use your own intuition to make your final selections. However, we have enjoyed some remarkable success in recent years and here are just a few of the pointers you could have found at the 2014 Cheltenham Festival:
2014 Supreme Novices' Hurdle - "There has been weakness behind Vautour in recent weeks but ignore the negative vibes. He'll get us off to a flyer under the guidance of Ruby Walsh" (Vautour won by six lengths at 6/1)
2014 Champion Hurdle - "Hurricane Fly isn't getting any younger and the market looks seriously wide open. Take a chance on Jezki at a nice price as he looks certain to make the frame" (Jezki beats My Tent Or Yours in a thriller at 9/1)
2014 Neptune Investment Hurdle - "Faugheen is the banker of the week and it's no surprise to see floods of cash for Mullins' stable star. Get your money down and wait for your winnings!" (Faugheen hacked up by over four lengths at 6/4)
2014 Coral Cup - "Nicky Henderson is the trainer to keep on side and his runners will be well prepared for one of the hardest races at the Festival. Whisper looks the one to be on each-way" (Whisper wins the Coral Cup at 14/1)
2014 JLT Novices' Chase - "Jonjo O'Neill has been saying how much rain Taquin Du Seuil needs but we're not convinced this is the toughest of races and he could be the bet of the race regardless of the weather" (The selection wins at 7/1)
2014 Ryanair Chase - "Have people forgotten Dynaste's early season form? He is a monster of a horse and should definitely start favourite. Get on David Pipe's stable flagbearer at a generous price" (Dynaste did start favourite and won at 3/1)
2014 Champion Chase - "Annie Power looks a formidable rival but she is ridiculously short in the betting. Take her on with More Of That and the fantastic Barry Geraghty" - (Holds off Annie Power to win at odds of 15/2)
2014 Martin Pipe Handicap - "Mullins can end the week on a high with Don Poli in the Martin Pipe and he looks to be ahead of the handicapper" (He wins at a whopping 12/1)
Don’t forget, the prices above are the SPs, but our ante-post Festival tips are posted on the site in advance of the relevant contests at a time when even more rewarding odds are available. For example, Sublimity was generally available at 50-1 when we highlighted his chances back in February 2007.
Trends: In making our selections, we pay special attention to the patterns that have developed over the years, as Cheltenham is such a unique course and the races at the Festival have their own special characteristics. Certainly, history repeats itself here more than at any other meeting and our careful analysis of these trends enables us to whittle down large fields to a few prime contenders.
Statistics: In our statistics sections you'll find previous Cheltenham Festival results - we currently detail the winners of every Festival race since 1989, including the horse and jockey plus the starting-price. We plan to expand this section in the near future and list all Festival winners dating back to the days of Mill House and Arkle. We also provide statistics for both Cheltenham Festival Jockeys and Trainers, with Ruby Walsh and Nicky Henderson currently heading their respective fields.
Tickets and Enclosures: Finally, for those wanting to join in the pilgrimage to the home of National Hunt racing, we have all the information you’ll need to make the most of your visit, including details of Cheltenham Festival tickets and information on all of the enclosures and Cheltenham Festival hospitality at the racecourse.