The Cheltenham Festival 2021 is just weeks away and like all racing fans, we’re counting down the days until the greatest show on earth.
We’ll make sure you’re ‘Cheltenham ready’ with weekly updates full of the latest Cheltenham news, our Cheltenham Odds Picks, and those all-important 2021 Cheltenham odds.
We still don’t know if fans will be allowed to attend come March, but no matter what, all roads lead to Cheltenham and we cannot wait – bring it on!
After a hectic festive period, all eyes are now focussed on March and the Cheltenham Festival.
Here we taker a closer look at three horses who have already been well backed for the Festival following impressive performances so far this season.
One of the hottest properties in jumps racing, he made a winning chasing debut at Down Royal at the end of October in impressive style before following that up with success in the Drinmore Chase at Fairyhouse.
A perfect 10 from 10 in his career, he’s many people’s ‘Cheltenham banker’ and he’s set to line up in the Marsh Novices Chase on the Thursday of the Festival.
He won the Supreme Novices’ at last year’s Festival and he’s looked a natural since making the switch to fences this season, winning both races so far.
An exciting jumper with Festival winning form, he’s very much the one to beat in the Arkle.
Winner of the Ryanair Chase this year and made a striking reappearance at Cheltenham in October under Bryony Frost to burst into the Gold Cup betting.
He cemented his place as a Gold Cup challenger with success in the King George on Boxing Day, with Frost becoming the first female jockey to ever win the race.
Being the most popular horse racing event of the entire year, there are always a ton of betting markets offered by the bookies on every single Cheltenham race.
Read on to check out our breakdown of the most popular Cheltenham bets, hopefully helping you to back a winner or two at the Festival.
As it says on the tin – you’re having a bet on a specific horse to win a specific race. If your horse crosses the line first you’re a winner, if not then it’s back to the drawing board.
Cheltenham fields can be big and, with a large number of runners, each-way betting is extremely popular at the Festival.
You’re placing two bets in one – a bet on your horse to win and a bet on your horse to be placed.
If your horse only grabs a place then the win part of your bet is beat but the place part is a winner – nice.
If your horse wins though, both parts of the bet (the win and the place) are winners – very nice.
The number of places offered in a race depends on the number of runners and type of race.
It’s always worthwhile shopping about when betting also, as bookies offer extra places on loads of races at the Festival so make sure and grab some tasty value.
Say you fancy four favourites at the Festival but they’re all short prices.
Rather than backing them as singles, you could do them as an Acca – to get your bet up every horse has to win but if they do, you’ve landed a cracking bet.
Everyone loves a Cheltenham Acca as it offers you the possibility of a juicy return for a small outlay.
Ante post betting is when you place a bet weeks or even months before a specific race and it’s extremely popular for Cheltenham.
Top horses will typically spend their season ‘targeting’ a specific big race at Cheltenham.
With this target race often announced, punters can back the horse for that race months before the Festival to hopefully grab bigger odds than they would on race day.
If the horse performs well through the season you can end up having a tasty price on it come the actual race.
On the flip side though, if it performs poorly then its price may be bigger on the day or, worst-case scenario, it might not even run at the Festival at all – meaning your ante post bet is a loser.
Every year, the bookies offer some fantastic Cheltenham betting offers including free bets, money-back offers, and extra places on races.
We’ve listed below some of the current top offers – perfect for using on our Cheltenham Odds Picks.
There are always some major talking points in the run-up to March and this year is no exception.
Here’s what to look out for in Cheltenham 2021…
Every racing fan will be desperate to see spectators at the Festival and here at Odds Manager we’ve got everything crossed that we get to hear that famous Cheltenham roar this Spring.
Can Al Boum Photo become the first horse since Best Mate to win three Cheltenham Gold Cups in a row?
The three-time Festival winner missed the 2020 renewal due to injury and racing fans will be itching to see him return in March.
The Festival is run over four days from Tuesday to Friday – there are six races every day including the day’s signature feature race.
Aside from the feature race, every day of the Festival offers awesome excitement as the best horses in the UK and Ireland battle it out to cement their place in racing history.
The Supreme Novices’ Hurdle kicks-off the Festival and is always a popular betting race as punters and bookies go into battle.
But it’s the Champion Hurdle that’s the feature race of Festival opening day, as the top hurdlers go head-to-head over the two-mile trip.
Epatante is the current champion and he’s bound to be popular again at odds of 9/4 at Unibet.
Wednesday is all about the Queen Mother Champion Chase, which is one of the most exhilarating races at the Festival.
Racing fans will be hoping that Altior lines up as he looks to win a record-equaling third Champion Chase and he’s currently 12/1 at bet365 to create history.
The final race on Day 2 is the Champion Bumper, the only race at the Festival that is run on the flat.
Thursday’s feature is the Stayers Hurdle – where horses battle it out over 3 miles to be crowned king of the stayers.
The Ryanair Chase is also one to watch on Day 3 and it’s always a competitive race – the Irish horse Min won the race in 2020 and is 6/1 at bet365 to repeat the feat in 2021.
The Cheltenham Gold Cup dominates the final day of the Festival and is one of the most fiercely fought contests on the racing calendar.
Al Boum Photo has won this race the last two years and is aiming to emulate the great Best Mate and Arkle as a three-time winner.
He’s currently 7/2 at BetVictor to land it again and seal his place among racing giants – can he do it?
He’s jockey for Willie Mullins who has been Champion Trainer at the Cheltenham Festival seven times in the last 10 years and he’ll have some top rides including on Al Boum Photo in the Gold Cup.
Best known for partnering Tiger Roll to his two Grand National victories he rides for Ryanair owner Michael O’Leary and his Gigginstown team of horses and he’s been one of the leading jockeys at recent Festivals.
One of the top female jump jockeys and she’ll be partnering Frodon as they look to make it back-to-back Festival wins, this time targeting the Gold Cup.
He’ll have some top rides as stable jockey for the powerful Paul Nicholls’ yard, including on Politologue in the Champion Chase.
ITV Racing will showcase the majority of the Festival on terrestrial TV, while you can watch every race live on the subscription channel Racing TV.
But remember, if you’re having a bet, many top bookmakers will let you live stream the race from their site – perfect for watching all the Cheltenham action and hopefully cheering home a winner.
The Cheltenham Festival 2020 gave us four days of top-class racing action to enjoy with plenty of thrills and spills.
The opening day saw Epatante win the Champion Hurdle while Shishkin ruled supreme in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle and Honeysuckle blew the girls away in the Mares’ Hurdle.
Day 2 saw Champ win the RSA under a never-say-die Barry Geraghty ride before Politologue landed the Queen Mother Champion Chase.
Thursday saw Ireland land victories with Samcro and Min before there was a huge shock in the Stayers Hurdle as Lisnagar Oscar sprung a 50/1 surprise.
The final day saw Goshen throw it away at the final flight in the Triumph Hurdle before Paul Townend and Al Boum Photo put in a faultless display in landing a second Cheltenham Gold Cup.
Please note that all odds are correct at time of publication and are subject to change.
When looking to have a bet at the Cheltenham Festival you want a bookie that offers a huge range of betting markets plus some tasty Odds Boosts and promotions.
For us, the top three Cheltenham Festival bookies are bet365, Paddy Power and Betfair.
The Festival is over four days and each day has its specific feature race.
Tuesday - The Champion Hurdle
Wednesday - The Queen Mother Champion Chase
Thursday - The Stayers Hurdle
Friday - The Cheltenham Gold Cup
For now, we don’t know but we’ve everything crossed that spectators will be allowed into the greatest show on earth.
There’s millions of pounds in prize money on offer over the four days but the biggest in 2021 is for the Cheltenham Gold Cup, with the winner receiving £625,000, and of course the Gold Cup.