Cheltenham Favourites

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Both bookmakers and punters look forward to Cheltenham favourites each year because the festival is a huge betting opportunity that always attracts millions of pounds of bets placed.

Cheltenham Favourites – Top 10

Cheltenham Favourites are often based on the good form they bring, the best jockeys and trainers, recent trial races and having good winning past form at the Cheltenham Festival.

Cheltenham Gold Cup 2021 ante-post odds and potential runners

  1. Al Boum Photo – 3/1*
  2. Champ – 13/2*
  3. A Plus Tard – 13/2*
  4. Royale Pagaille – 10/1*
  5. Santini – 14/1*
  6. Frodon – 14/1*
  7. Native River – 16/1*
  8. Minella Indo – 16/1*
  9. Kemboy – 16/1*
  10. Lostintranslation – 33/1*

*Odds subject to change. Last updated 24/2/21.

Cheltenham Festival Favourites – Grade 1

Find the Cheltenham Favourites for the biggest races of the Cheltenham Festival 2021.

Cheltenham Favourites 2021

DayRaceFavouriteOdds*Bookmakers
Day 1
Tuesday 16th March 2021
Unibet Champion HurdleHoneysuckle3/1Bet with
William Hill
Day 2
Wednesday 17th March 2021
Betway Queen Mother Champion ChaseChacun Pour Soi10/11Bet with
William Hill
Day 3
Thursday 18th March 2021
Ryanair ChaseAllaho5/1Bet with
Day 3
Thursday 18th March 2021
Paddy Power Stayers’ HurdlePaisley Park10/3Bet with
Day 4
Friday 19th March 2021
Cheltenham Gold CupAl Boum Photo3/1Bet with
Day 4
Friday 19th March 2021
Triumph HurdleZanahiyr5/2Bet with

*Odds subject to change. Last updated 24/02/2021. 

Cheltenham Betting Tips 2021 and Festival Betting Guide

Here are the main Cheltenham Tips when it comes to the types of bets you can place:

  • Win bets on the Cheltenham favourites races such as the Champion Hurdle, Champion Chase, Stayers’ Hurdle, Ryanair Chase and the Cheltenham Gold Cup.
  • Each way bets on the Cheltenham favourites races such as the Triumph Hurdle, bumper, cross country race and handicaps.
  • The number of races won by a horse trained in Britain and Ireland and which nation has the most winners.
  • The leading jockey at the festival.
  • The leading trainer at the festival.

Many horses are returning for another crack at the Cheltenham Festival this year. We often see previous winners heading up the ante post market. This years’ Gold Cup favourite, Al Boum Photo, was last year’s winner. Other horses that placed now feature prominently at the top of the favourites for the 2021 potential runners.

2020 Cheltenham Gold Cup Results

Cheltenham Gold Cup ResultsGold Cup WinnerSP
1stAl Boum Photo10/3
2ndSantini5/1
3rdLostintranslation10/1
4thMonalee20/1
5thDelta Work5/1

Top Cheltenham Races

There are several Group 1 races held over the four day Cheltenham Festival.

Day 1 – Champion Hurdle

The 2021 Champion Hurdle is the championship race for the best two-mile hurdlers in training and it takes place over the Old Course on the first day (Tuesday) on the Festival. The Nicky Henderson-trained Epatante won the Champion Hurdle in 2020.
Read back to see odds on the favourites for the 2021 Champion Hurdle.

Day 2 – Champion Chase

The 2021 Champion Chase on the second day of the Festival is the championship race for experienced chasers and the race distance is two miles. In 2020, the Paul Nicholls-trained Politologue won the Champion Chase.

Paddy Power offers the joint best price for some of the outsiders in the Champion Chase. William Hill overall offers the best value for most horses in this race which is one of the Cheltenham favourites. All the UK bookmakers settle each-way bets at one fifth the odds for 3 places.

Day 3 – Ryanair Chase and Stayers’ Hurdle

The Ryanair Chase is the feature race that attracts some of the best 2m4f chasers in training. It often attracts horses that are in between the Champion Chase trip of 2m and the Gold Cup distance of 3m2f.

In 2020, the Willie Mullins-trained Min won the Ryanair Chase, while Lisnagar Oscar caused a slight upset to win the Stayers Hurdle.

Day 4 – Cheltenham Gold Cup

The 2021 Cheltenham Gold Cup is the most prestigious horse race in the sport. It is run on the fourth day of the festival. It counts over three miles and two furlongs and there are 22 fences. Unibet and Betfair offer the best odd on the favourite Al Boum Photo, who is one of the Cheltenham favourites after winning the last two Cheltenham Gold Cups.

Paddy Power does not offer the best odds for the first few horses in the betting. William Hill and Unibet offer the best odds on the most horses entered for this event. Betfair offers the best odds for last year’s winner Al Boum Photo. See below for the implied probability of the Gold Cup Favourites winning.

Cheltenham Gold Cup RunnerWinning chance
Al Boum Photo25%
Champ13.2%
A Plus Tard13.2%
Royale Pigaille9.1%
Santini6.7%
Frodon6.7%
Native River5.9%
Kemboy5.9%
Minella Indo5.9%
Lostintranslation2.9%

Implied probability based on best odds last updated 24/02/21.

Cheltenham Favourites – Ante-Post Betting Guide

One of the Cheltenham’s perks is ante-post betting on the major championship races – this is when you can bet on the Cheltenham Festival races way in advance of the meeting.

Most years as soon as the Festival is over there is betting on the races for the next Cheltenham Festival. Bookmakers such as Paddy Power and Betfair issue ante-post betting for races like the festival’s Gold Cup, Champion Hurdle and Champion Chase.

While nearer the time – around 6 months before – most of the Cheltenham Festival races will have betting on and these markets change all the time based on how horses are performing in the build-up to the Cheltenham Festival.

Non-Runner, No Bet

In the weeks before the Cheltenham Festival most of the main bookmakers like Paddy Power, William Hill, Coral and Bet365 will make their ante-post Cheltenham markets ‘Non-Runner, No Bet’ – this means that if your Cheltenham bet (horse) doesn’t run you will get your money back – it will be classed as a non-runner.

However, ante-post betting can be fraught with danger because if the backed horse is withdrawn before the day of the race all stakes are lost. In the weeks leading up to the Festival, some bookmakers offer the concession of non-runner/no bet.

This means if a horse is taken out of the race before race day it counts as a non-runner. Bookmakers refund all the placed stakes on the horse. In placing ante-post bets on Cheltenham favourites you should identify which bookmaker offers non-runner/no bet for all 28 races at the festival.

Initially, the offer might only apply to the feature race on each of the four days of the festival but nearer the time will be extended to cover all the races. Operators like Paddy Power and Betfair will offer extra places and odds boosts on winners at Cheltenham.

Read on to learn about the different races that you can bet on during this festival.

Cheltenham Favourites Best Odds Summary

The best bookmakers for the best odds for winners at the festival are Unibet and Betfair who both offer more value than Paddy Power. The place terms for each operator are the same when betting each way on Cheltenham favourites. All the major UK bookmakers offer odds in the ante-post betting for all 28 races at the festival.

Find bet365 odds for Cheltenham Gold Cup here
Beware the Bear Cheltenham Win

Cheltenham Festival: Horse Racing – Cheltenham Festival – Cheltenham Racecourse, Cheltenham, Britain – March 12, 2019 Jeremiah McGrath on Beware The Bear celebrates winning the 2:50 Ultima Handicap Chase REUTERS/Eddie Keogh/Ritzau Scanpix

Live Cheltenham Betting

Paddy Power, bet365 and Unibet are three of the biggest UK bookmakers and each operator offers live betting on Cheltenham favourites. Customers can bet on the winner of a race at the festival once the race has begun. Prices are updated as the race develops and betting is available until the outcome is obvious.

Some operators offer place only betting and others will accept each-way betting for live races which are often Cheltenham favourites.

Live streaming is available with several UK online bookmakers, but customers must place a bet to gain access to this service. There is also a cash-out option with Cheltenham favourites which means customers cash close bets before expiry to guarantee a profit or limit a loss.

Cheltenham Betting Offers

Most bookmakers will have extra Cheltenham Festival offers in the weeks leading up to the event – these can include faller insurance and extra place offers so it’s always best to shop around and find the best Cheltenham offers.

At the time of writing, no bookmakers offered odds boosts or extra places for Cheltenham favourites. However, new customers with Paddy Power and Unibet can take advantage of the welcome offer as longs as the qualifying bets and rules are compliant.

The welcome offers are generally matched deposit and bet bonuses. Any bonus funds can be used for betting on winners at Cheltenham. Each welcome offer is available when the Terms & Conditions are followed completely.

Check out the Cheltenham Betting Offers here.

Cheltenham Favourites Summary

The festival is huge for betting and all the major bookmakers offer ante-post betting for the winners at Cheltenham. Customers can place win and each-way bets on races at the festival and some bookmakers offer enhanced odds.

Non-runner/no bet is a popular concession during the few weeks before Cheltenham. It is easily the biggest betting meeting of the year with opportunities to enjoy welcome offers and place bets on Cheltenham favourites.

What we likeWhat we don’t like
Ante-post bettingRisk in ante-post odds
Cheltenham concessions for all customersNo value in some place terms
Extra places and enhanced oddsNo free bets for existing customers

*All odds subject to change.

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