The Cheltenham Festival is one of the biggest horse racing events in the UK and the world. Some of the best races, including the Cheltenham Gold Cup, Champion Hurdle, and the Stayers’ Hurdle take place during this Festival. It usually takes place around St. Patrick’s Day, which is why you can spot a lot of Irish visitors.
This festival was the birthplace of many legendary jockeys and trainers, which is why we wanted to spare a second and give them the recognition that they deserve. Before we do that, let’s check out what 2020 has in store for the most popular races.
Bookies hold Epatante as the biggest favourite to win the Champion Hurdle. Epatante’s odds are 3/1. Saldier comes in on the second place with 6/1, while Pentland Hills is third with 7/1. Pentland Hills has been marked as a potential surprise winner, which is why many tipsters put their money on this horse.
Next up, Paisley Park is the biggest favourite to win the Stayers’ Hurdle with odds sitting at 11/8. If The Cap Fits is second with 6/1, while Honeysuckle and Benie Des Dieux share the same odds on the third place – 7/1. Apples Jade and Laurina are 4th and 5th with 8/1 and 9/1, respectively.
Al Boum Photo is the bookie’s pick to win the Gold Cup with odds sitting at 4/1. Kemboy is second with 7/1, and Clan Des Obeaux and Lostintranslation share the third spot with 8/1. One thing we’d like to remind you though – these three races are not the only events at Cheltenham Festival. Many other races take place during the 4th days and if you want to place a bet on those events as well, you should check out all the latest Cheltenham betting odds and offers.
Now, let’s head over and share some of the greatest sportsmen that participated at this festival.
There might be some great jockeys that brought excitement to the festival, but none of them comes close to some of the legends.
Barry Geraghty and Mick Fitzgerald
These two jockeys are the only ones who come close to the legendary Ruby Walsh, but even they are far away. Barry and Mick have been the top jockeys at Cheltenham on 2 different occasions – Barry was the top jockey in 2003 and 2012, while Fitzgerald was in 1999 and 2000.
Ruby Walsh is the most decorated and most successful jockey ever to participate at the Cheltenham Festival. His resume is filled with numerous records and wins, and at the centre of it are the 11 awards as the top jockey. He won these awards in the period from 2004-2017. He dominated each year with the highest number of wins (total of 46).
In 2019, Ruby announced that he will retire after spending 24 years. With over 2,500 wins, he is considered as the greatest jockey of all time.
The jockeys can be great athletes, but none of their successes would be possible if it weren’t for their trainers.
Willie Mullins is one of the greatest in this section. He was named as the top trainer on 6 different occasions, with the latest being in 2019. He was also the top trainer in 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, and 2011.
Willie might be one of the greatest, but he’s not Paul Nicholls, AKA the GOAT. The legendary British trainer was crowned as the top trainer 6 times from 1999 to 2009. He was dominating the world during that decade, which is why he is considered by many as the best trainer in history.
Image courtesy of Action Images via Reuters/Matthew Childs