Everything You Need to Know About the Cheltenham Festival 2017

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Because this certainly isn’t just any meet… it’s the racing event of the year

What better way to step into spring than with a day spent at the races? The Cheltenham Festival is the racing world’s most popular event and makes for a fun day out with both family and friends. Spend time in the busy stands, drink in hand and cheer on your chosen stallions for an action-packed and fun-filled few days.

If you haven’t been to the races before and are not sure what to expect, the racing experts at our hotel in Cheltenham have put together a guide to the who, what, why and wheres, ahead of the big day:

When to Go

From Champion and Ladies to St Patrick’s and Gold Cup, Cheltenham Festival varies from day to day. Be sure to research what is happening and when, as this will determine when you might prefer to go – some of the days are, shall we say, a little noisier than others…

What to Wear

Thankfully, there is no strict dress code at Cheltenham, so take advantage of this in the chilly March weather and wrap up warm. Women do tend to wear outlandish hats on Ladies Day, just for the fun of it and fancy dress is permitted (as long as the outfit isn’t offensive) although the racecourse naturally reserves the right to refuse entry to anyone in attendance should they see fit. If you are planning on visiting the Club Enclosure or dining in one of the many restaurants onsite, then smart casual is a must. Think tweed suits and brogue boots for a warmer ensemble for men and statement jackets and hats with sensible footwear for the ladies.

What to Bring

Cash – and plenty of it. Most bookmakers only accept bets of £5 or more, though the Tote will take bets from £2 via credit or debit card. Trust us, you won’t want to be caught empty-handed when a horse takes your fancy.

How to Get There

Although there are parking facilities onsite, there tends to be a long wait getting in and out of the venue – avoid this by choosing the train or staying somewhere where transfers are conveniently included. For example, did you know we offer a transfer service down our private path to the racecourse for guests staying at our luxury hotel in Cheltenham.

How to Win

Always make sure you visit the paddock before the race and look out for horses with bright eyes, a shiny coat, good muscle tone and a relaxed walk; avoid those who are agitated or sweaty. Make sure to also check previous points and competitor information in The Racing Post or your Race Card on the day.

Where to Stay

If you are visiting Cheltenham from afar or are looking to make your time at the festival extra special this year, then choose to stay somewhere with a little added luxury. Our guest bedrooms at Ellenborough Park, one of the finest hotels in Cheltenham, range from the modest to the grand, so we can find something to suit the needs of you and your party.

Guests and staff are so excited for another year of racing fun at Cheltenham, so do come and join in with the fun.

If you need somewhere to stay during the festival, find out more about our Cotswolds hotel and book today.

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