UK – Betting odds at sportsbook operators across the UK, Europe and around the world have today been updated ahead of one of most-watched horse racing events on the global horse racing calendar; Cheltenham Festival.
The Cheltenham Festival 2020, which is held over four days, gets underway today, a meeting in the National Hunt racing calendar in the United Kingdom, with race prize money second only to the Grand National.
All eyes will be on the opening race as the going has changed today to soft with heavy in places, compared with soft and good to soft yesterday.
Simon Claisse, Cheltenham course clerk commented:
“That’s often the way when you get rainfall overnight – it rests on the surface for a couple of hours before soaking in. It was borderline first thing but when we walked again we decided to call it heavy in places. It is heavy at the intersections of the Old and New courses. The forecast now is for no more rain until Wednesday evening.”
Attendance numbers are expected to be high, but it is not yet clear whether the crowd will beat last year’s record for the opening day of almost sixty-eight thousand, due to the coronavirus outbreak and fear surrounding the disease.
Bookmakers’ odds are constantly fluctuating as the weather continues to change and news from the stables pours in.
Currently the favourites to watch out for in the meetings on the opening day include: Asterion Forlonge, Abacadabras, Notebook, Vinndication, Epatante, Benie Des Dieux, Imperial Aura and Carefully Selected.
According to sportsbooks in the UK, top jockeys to look out for are Nico de Boinville and Davy Russell. Nico de Boinville is an English horse racing jockey who won the 2015 Cheltenham Gold Cup riding Coneygree. Davy Russell is an Irish National Hunt jockey who has won the Grand National on two occasions and the Cheltenham Gold Cup.