With 7 races a day there are 28 races in total over the four day period. Some of these are more esteemed than others with and are known as Championship Races. In total there are 4 Championship races, one each day. These races are highly anticipated and in turn, there is a lot of excitement surrounding them. Each of the main Championship races are as follows:
Tuesday - Champion Hurdle 15:30 (3:30)
The main race of day one is the Champion Hurdle Challenge Trophy which is run over a length of 2 miles and half a furlong. It is the fourth race of the day when the event is truly in full swing. In recent years the race has produced some prolific winners such as Buveur d’Air who won the race in 2017 (5/1) and then again in 2018 (4/6F).
In terms of the betting trends of this race, trainers to keep an eye on include Willie Mullins who has won it 4 times in the last 10 years. Nicky Henderson is also someone to keep on your radar for this race with a similar 4 wins in the last 10 years. I’d also keep an eye on horses owned by J.P.McManus as his horses have won 5 times over the last 10 years with the last three winners all being owned by him.
Wednesday - Queen Mother Chase 15:30 (3:30)
Day two features the 2 mile long Queen Mother Champion Steeplechase. As with all Championship races it takes place in the middle of the card and has by far the biggest purse at £400,000. Over the past couple of years, one horse has dominated this race, Altior. He has won in 2018 (1/1) and again last year 2019 (4/11).
When looking at the betting trends of recent years one trainer stands out from his counterparts, that trainer being Nicky Henderson. With 5 wins over the past 10 years and winning 3 of the past 4, he’s certainly one to watch for this year's iteration. Henry de Bromhead and Paul Nicholls also have relatively good records in this race in recent years.
Thursday - The Stayers’ Hurdle 15:30 (3:30)
There are two bumper races on day three with the Ryanair Steeple Chase being a big one at 14:50 however the main one of the day is The Stayers Hurdle ran over a distance of 3 miles. This race has produced some legendary horses in the past most notably Big Buck’s who won the race in 4 consecutive years from 2009-2012. No horse has won it more than once since then. Willie Mullins is the recent most successful trainer in this race winning in 2017 & 2018 with different horses, jockeys & owners each time. One thing to note about the race is that the past three winning horses have all been years old.
Friday - Cheltenham Gold Cup 15:30 (3:30)
The Cheltenham Gold Cup is the pinnacle of the Cheltenham Festival. Featuring the biggest purse at £625,000, the race on the final day is the one that everyone wants to win. The fact that only Nicky Henderson has won the race more than once in the last 10 years shows you it really is a highly competitive race. Willie Mullins won the race last year for the first time with 7-year-old Al Boum Photo and Paul Townend on board.
As mentioned previously there are no patterns or dominant trainers at the Gold Cup. It will really come down to which horse performs on the day but one things for sure it will be a true battle for the ultimate prize in horse racing.