Remembering the 2021 Cheltenham Festival
The 2023 Cheltenham Festival is just over three months away, and excitement is already reaching fever pitch. Featuring several marquee races, such as the Cheltenham Gold Cup and the Champion Hurdle, the event is unmissable for any horse racing fans and punters.
Oddschecker, which compares Cheltenham odds and previews, has made Honeysuckle one of the favourites to win the aforementioned Champion Hurdle.
The unbeaten mare will become the first horse since Istabraq over two decades ago to win three consecutive Champion Hurdles if she manages to secure the victory.
But this year, her odds of victory have been pushed some way out thanks to one horse, Constitution Hill. The five-year-old is the odds-on favourite to take the crown and will take some stopping in March.
A Look Back At 2021
The 2021 Cheltenham Festival Horse Racing season was a huge success and will go down in history. Held over four days, the festival was truly a sight to behold. Some of the best horses in the world competed for the greatest prizes in sport. With a total prize fund of £4.5 million, it was one of the biggest prize money events in the horse racing calendar.
The first day of the festival kicked off with the Champion Hurdle, which saw Honeysuckle take the first of her two crowns. She made it look easy as she cruised to victory, beating Sharjah by six lengths and cementing her place as one of the best horses in the world.
The following day saw the Queen Mother Champion Chase, one of the most prestigious events in the horse racing calendar. The race was won by Irish underdog Put The Kettle On — the first mare in history to do so.
While Put The Kettle On had an impressive run, overall, the race was somewhat underwhelming. Previous winner Altior was forced out just a few days prior, while the reigning champion, Politologue, was a last-minute withdrawal.
Event organisers, as they always do, saved the best till last. The final day of the festival saw the Cheltenham Gold Cup take place — easily the highlight of the festival.
Paul Townend rode 9/4 favourite, Al Boum Photo; however, they could only manage third place. A Plus Tard was the 100/30 second favourite, but he finished in second place. In the end, the Gold Cup and its £468,750 prize fund were claimed by the Jack Kennedy-ridden Minella Indo. He held off A Plus Tard to seal the victory by one and a quarter lengths.
Overall, the 2021 Cheltenham Festival Horse Racing season was a fantastic success. Spectators in attendance were treated to some of the best horse racing in the world, and all competitors should be commended for their efforts. The competition was fierce and exciting, with many of the biggest names in racing in attendance, including some of the world’s top jockeys.
A Look Forward To 2023’s Instalment
The atmosphere at Cheltenham is always electric, and next year will be no different. Tickets are selling fast, so get them booked early if you plan to attend.
When it comes to horseracing, Cheltenham attracts the world’s finest runners and riders; naturally, the standard for 2023 couldn’t be higher. As we eluded to earlier, Honeysuckle faces stiff competition, so it will take a herculean effort on her part to make it a hat trick of Champion Hurdle crowns.
As is tradition, the Cheltenham Gold Cup, the jewel in the festival’s crown, will run on the final day of the 2023 edition. While the field is still to be announced, a number of big names are in the ante-post betting lineup.
2021 winner Minella Indo is available at long odds, as is Shishkin. The favourite at the moment, however, is Galopin Des Champs. The six-year-old gelding has won four of his last five races, and he will take some beating on the final day of the huge event.