Cheltenham Clerk Expects Ground To Be Good To Soft For The Festival

Cheltenham Going

Clerk of the course at Cheltenham Simon Claisse expects the ground at Prestbury Park to be mainly good to soft for the start of the Cheltenham festival, which is now less than two weeks away.

Claisse expects the description to have either good or soft in places in it with the ground that the horses will be running on will have not been touched for 12 months.

(Credit ATR) He said: “As things currently stand I have a good sense we are going to start with good to soft and ‘something’ in places – whether it is good in places or soft in places – with the normal caveat based on the current forecast.

“The ground we use at the Festival is preserved behind rails throughout the season, October to December – so basically what we’re racing on, no horse has set foot on for the best part of 12 months.”

Although the weather this jumps season has been one of the wettest on record, the conditions at the track ahead of the four day meeting are said to be in fine order across all three courses.

“The track is looking in great nick – and maybe we could be looking for some rain in a week or so’s time, which is ironic in a way,” he said.

“All courses are now set up and ready to go and where we want to be with a fortnight before we start racing.

“The Old course, which is the one we use on Tuesday and Wednesday, and the Cross Country on the Wednesday, is currently good to soft, soft in places and the New course too for Thursday and Friday is good to soft, soft in places.

“It’s where we would like to be with 13 days before we start racing.”