Festival facts and figures

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It might be the most popular steeplechase meeting in the United States, and it’s not in the United States. England’s Cheltenham Festival goes to the post for its first of four banner days Tuesday and will be watched the world over. To get you started, here’s some facts and figures courtesy of the Festival press office.

In the U.S., watch on TVG (we think) or via your ADW account. Otherwise, the Fesitval can be seen live on Racing UK and Channel 4.

By The Numbers
£100,000,000 – local (Gloucestershire) economic impact of The Festival each year.

£4,150,000 – record amount of prize money on offer at The Festival 2016 – the most of any Jump festival in the world.

£1,000,000 – The Jockey Club Chase Triple Crown bonus over and above the race’s prize money that Cue Card will win his connections with victory in the Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup (split £650k to his owner Jean Bishop, £150k to trainer Colin Tizzard, £100k to stable staff at the Tizzard stables and £100k to jockey Paddy Brennan).

$500,000 – Bonus offered to the horse that can win Thursday’s feature, the Ryanair World Hurdle, and the Iroquois Steeplechase in Nashville, Tenn. May 14.

£575,000 – prize money available for the Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup.

265,000 – pints of Guinness knocked back by spectators at The Festival 2015.

120,000 – bottles of wine drunk at The Festival 2015.

105,000 – people using Cheltenham Spa train station over the four days of racing.

80,000 – number of movements between the racecourse and the town on the shuttle bus service.

68,000 – maximum capacity at Cheltenham on Cheltenham Gold Cup Day (when all temporary facilities are open).

62,000 – average attendance over the four-day period of The Festival.

45,000 – bread rolls eaten at The Festival 2015.

45,000 – afternoon teas served to customers at The Festival 2015.

40,000 – hospitality guests served over the four days of The Festival.

36,500 – vehicles parked over the four days.

21,120 – distance, in feet, run during the National Hunt Chase, The Festival’s longest race.

12,320 – yards of running rails surrounding the track.

20,000 – bottles of house champagne sold at The Festival.

8,000+ – gallons of tea and coffee served.

6,000 – staff employed over The Festival.

5,000 – bundles of birch used every season.

2001 – the only year, besides the periods during the two World Wars, that The Festival has been cancelled (due to foot and mouth disease).

1934 – the year Golden Miller became the first horse to win both the Cheltenham Gold Cup and the Grand National in a single season.

800 – members of the press accredited for The Festival each year.

350 – chefs on site.

£150,000,000 – bet on The Festival every year.

£135,000,000 – what The Jockey Club has spent on facilities at Cheltenham in the last 35 years.

50 – staff coaches per day, sourced from all over the country, as far away as Liverpool, London, Cardiff, Swansea, Birmingham and Coventry.

£45,000,000 – cost of the redevelopment of Cheltenham Racecourse. This project was concluded on time and within budget in November 2015.

30 – extra flights put on by Ryanair on the Dublin to Birmingham route during The Festival period (around 20,000 customers will use Ryanair).

28 – National Hunt races run at The Festival.

22 – fences jumped during the Cheltenham Gold Cup.

9 – tons of potatoes consumed during The Festival.

7 – most wins by a jockey – Ruby Walsh – in a single year.

6 – most consecutive victories by a horse in any Cheltenham Festival race – Quevega in the David Nicholson Mares’ Hurdle between 2009 and 2014.

5 – tons of smoked and fresh salmon consumed at The Festival.

4 – feature races run during The Festival, including the Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup, Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase, Stan James Champion Hurdle and Ryanair World Hurdle.

Cheltenham Racecourse
Cheltenham Racecourse is situated in Prestbury on the outskirts of the historic spa town of Cheltenham. The Home of Jump Racing, Cheltenham Racecourse is the venue for the world’s pre-eminent Jump meeting, The Festival, which takes place in March over four days every year.

Set against the beautiful backdrop of the Cotswolds, Cheltenham Racecourse is a stunning natural arena and offers the highest-quality action throughout the Jump season.

More information available at www.cheltenham.co.uk and through Twitter (@CheltenhamRaces), Facebook www.facebook.com/thehomeofjumpracing and Instagram (@CheltenhamRaces).

Racing Schedule (all times GMT – four hours ahead of EDT)

Champion Day – Tuesday, March 15. (Old Course)
1.30 Sky Bet Supreme Novices’ Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 87y
2.10 Racing Post Arkle Challenge Trophy Chase (Grade 1) 1m 7f 199y
2.50 Ultima Business Solutions Handicap Chase (Grade 3) 3m 1f
3.30 Stan James Champion Hurdle Challenge Trophy (Grade 1) 2m 87y
4.10 OLBG Mares’ Hurdle Race (Grade 1) 2m 3f 200y
4.50 National Hunt Chase (amateur riders) (Listed) 3m 7f 170y
5.30 Novices’ Handicap Chase (0-140) (Listed) 2m 4f 78y

Ladies Day – Wednesday, March 16. (Old Course & Cross Country)
1.30 Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 5f 26y
2.10 RSA Chase (Grade 1) 3m 80y
2.50 Coral Cup Hurdle (handicap hurdle) (Grade 3) 2m 5f 26y
3.30 Betway Queen Mother Champion Steeple Chase (Grade 1) 1m 7f 199y
4.10 Glenfarclas Cross Country Steeple Chase 3m 6f 37y
4.50 Fred Winter Juvenile Handicap Hurdle (Grade 3) 2m 87y
5.30 Weatherbys Champion Bumper (NH Flat Race) (Grade 1) 2m 87y

St Patrick’s Thursday – Thursday, March 17. (New Course)
1.30 JLT Novices’ Chase (Grade 1) 2m 3f 198y
2.10 Pertemps Network Final (handicap hurdle) (Listed) 2m 7f 213y
2.50 Ryanair Chase (Grade 1) 2m 4f 166y
3.30 Ladbrokes World Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 7f 213y
4.10 Brown Advisory & Merriebelle Stable Plate (handicap chase) (Grade 3) 2m 4f 166y
4.50 Trull House Stud Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle (Grade 2) 2m 179y
5.30 Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Chase (amateur riders) (0-145) 3m 2f

Gold Cup Day – Friday, March 18. (New Course)
1.30 JCB Triumph Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 179y
2.10 Vincent O’Brien County Handicap Hurdle (Grade 3) 2m 179y
2.50 Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 7f 213y
3.30 Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup Chase (Grade 1) 3m 2f 70y
4.10 St James’s Place Foxhunter Chase Challenge Cup (amateur riders) 3m 2f 70y
4.50 Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle (0-145) 2m 4f 56y
5.30 Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Handicap Chase (Grade 3) 2m 62y