The Racecourse, seen from Cleeve Hill
|Owned by||Jockey Club Racecourses|
|Screened on||Racing UK|
|Course type||National Hunt|
Cheltenham Racecourse is a racecourse for horse racing events, located at Prestbury Park, The racecourse has a scenic location in a natural amphitheatre just below the escarpment of the Cotswold Hills, at Cleeve Hill, with a capacity of 67,500 spectators. The racecourse also has its own steam railway station (of the same name), although this no longer connects to the national rail network but has since rather been the current southern terminus of the preserved Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway.
The main racecourse has two separate courses alongside each other, the Old Course and the New Course. The New Course has a tricky downhill fence and a longer run-in for steeplechases than the Old Course. Hurdle races over two miles on the New Course also have a slight peculiarity in that most of the hurdles are jumped early on in the race with only two hurdles being jumped in the last seven furlongs.
There is also a cross-country course which is laid out inside the main racecourse and is used for cross-country steeplechases.
The racecourse is the home of The Centaur, one of the largest auditoria in the South West of England. This multiple-use complex seats over 2,000 people for conferences and around 4,000 standing for concerts. It is also home to the Steeplechasing Hall of Fame. From 1999 to 2013 the racecourse was the venue for the annual Greenbelt festival and remains the venue for the Wychwood Music Festival. The University of Gloucestershire holds its graduation ceremony and summer ball at the racecourse.
From 2008, the racecourse and "The Jockey Club" were in talks with Cheltenham Town F.C. about a possible move to the racecourse. This would have meant the building of a new stadium with a double sided stand, one side in the stadium and the other for watching the races. Talks went on for a while but in December 2011, Cheltenham Town F.C. decided against the move due to the financial gap, which the football club's chairman Paul Baker described as "In the millions".
On 19 July 2013, Cheltenham Racecourse is to have a £45m redevelopment and is to include a new 6,500-capacity grandstand and royal box has been unanimously approved by planners.
- RSA Chase
- Neptune Investment Management Novices' Hurdle
- Supreme Novices' Hurdle
- Champion Bumper
- Ryanair Chase
- Spa Novices' Hurdle
- Paddy Power Gold Cup
- Cleeve Hurdle
- Cotswold Chase
- "Cheltenham Racecourse's £45m development approved". BBC News. 19 July 2013. Retrieved 20 July 2013.
- ^ BBC (2011). Robins decide against racecourse move
- ^ BBC (2005). New developments at Cheltenham Racecourse. Retrieved November 14, 2005.
- Cheltenham Racecourse (Official website)
- Follow the National Hunt Festival '08 with BBC Gloucestershire
- Go behind the scenes with BBC Gloucestershire's Virtual Cheltenham
- Panoramic photos of Cheltenham Racecourse
- Map sources for Cheltenham Racecourse