Cheltenham 2022 Champion Day 1: Racecard, Odds, Tips

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Cheltenham Day 1, also known as the Champion Day, is the most popular part of the Cheltenham Festival. The gates of the Cheltenham racecourse open on March 15, 2022, so you better start your preparations on time. In this article, we plan to tell you everything about the Cheltenham Champion Day, including the schedule, racecard, odds, and Cheltenham Champion Day tips. Keep reading to learn more!

Cheltenham Day 1 Champion Day 2022: Racecard, Schedule & Favourites

Do you want to test your luck during the Cheltenham Champion Day? If you don’t know where to begin, the first thing to do is to learn about the racecard. The next thing you need to do is research each individual event and try to come up with a strategy.

Sounds complicated? That’s exactly what we plan to do for you below. Check out our table showing you the complete Cheltenham Day 1 racecard and find out more about each race. The start dates for 2022 are unknown by the time of writing.

Day One 16th March 2021 – Start Times Race Distance Type Winner
13:20 Supreme Novices’ Hurdle 2m abt ½f Hurdle Appreciate it
13:55 Arkle Challenge Trophy abt 2m Chase Shishkin
14:30 Ultima Handicap Staple Chase 3m abt 1f Chase Vintage Clouds
15:05 Champion Hurdle 2m abt ½f Hurdle Honeysuckle
15:40 Mares’ Hurdle 2m abt 4f Hurdle Black Tears
16:15 Boodles Juvenile Hurdle 2m abt 4½f Chase Jeff Kidder
16:50 National Hunt Chase 3m abt 6f Chase Galvin

Cheltenham Champion Day Odds & Tips 2022

The Sky Bet Supreme Novices’ Hurdle Race

Supreme Novices’ Hurdle Race Info
Start Time 1:20 pm
Distance 2m 1/2f
Type of Course Old
Number of Fences 8
Favourite Kilcruit

There simply can’t be a better way to kick-start the Cheltenham Day 1 than with the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle Race. Because this is a Grade 1 race open for 4-year-old horses and above, run over a distance of 2 miles and 87 yards.

There are a total of 8 hurdles that horses from Britain and Ireland will need to navigate. To participate in the race, horses need to meet the weight of 10 stone and 13 pounds.

This year, the prize is set at £125,000, which is a great motivator for the jockeys to push themselves and their horses to their absolute limit.

Kilcruit is already very solid in the market for the 2022 renewal of the race. However, Sir Gerhard, who beat him in the Champion Bumper in 2021 is also short.

The Racing Post Arkle Challenge Trophy Steeple Chase

Arkle Challenge Steeple Chase Race Info
Start Time 1:55 pm
Distance 2m
Type of Course Old
Number of Fences 13
Favourite Appreciate It

The second event on the Cheltenham Day 1 race card is the Arkle Challenge. This is another popular and attractive Grade 1 race reserved for horses of five years and above. It is run over a distance of exactly 2 miles, which makes it the shortest event of day 1. However, there are 13 fences to jump, which means it is not the easiest one.

To participate in the race, horses need to weigh 11 stone and 4 pounds. Those who enter the race will have a chance to compete for the massive £175,000 prize.

Previous winners include Footpad, Altior and Douvan, all of which have smashed the course more than once.

Appreciate It currently leads for the 2022 renewal, while Bob Olinger and Quilixios are also short.

The Ultima Handicap Steeple Chase

Ultima Handicap Steeple Chase Race Info
Start Time 2:30 pm
Distance 3m 1/2f
Type of Course Old
Number of Fences 20
Favourite Vintage Clouds

At 2:30 p.m., we have the second-longest race of the day — the Ultima Handicap Steeple Chase. For a change, this is a Grade 3 event open for horses that are at least 5 years old. It is run over a distance of 3 miles and half a furlong and there are 20 fences to jump. That also makes it the race with the second-most hurdles.

This race, like all others, takes place on the old course. When it comes to the weights, this is a handicap race, so the handicapper will assign different handicaps to even out the playing field.

The Unibet Champion Hurdle Challenge Trophy

Unibet Champion Hurdle Race Info
Start Time 3:05 pm
Distance 2m 1/2f
Type of Course Old
Number of Fences 8
Favourite Honeysuckle

As you can guess from the name of this race, the Champion Hurdle is by far the most prestigious hurdling event on the National Hunt calendar. This is the most expensive race as well, with a prize of a whopping £450,000 for the winner.

Unibet Champion Hurdle is popular because its list of winners includes some of the most popular horses to ever jump a fence. Some of the names you must have heard of include National Spirit, Istabraq, Hatton’s Grace, Lanzarote, and Persian War.

Honeysuckle won the race in 2021 and is already a short price favourite to successfully defend her title.

This year, however, most Cheltenham Champion Day tips suggest that Epatante, Honeysuckle, or Pentland Hills are going to win.

The Champion Hurdle Challenge is the fourth race of the fourth event on the 2021 Cheltenham Day 1 racecard. It is a short Grade 1 event in which 4-year-old (and above) horses will race around a course that is 2 miles and half a furlong long.

This race has two weight limits. Four-year-old horses need to weigh 11 stone, 2 pounds, whereas 5-year-olds and above need to weigh 11 stone, 10 pounds. The horse that navigates the course the fastest and jumps all 8 fences will win £450,000!

Previous winners that you can use for reference include Espoir d’Allen, Buveur d’Air, and Annie Power.

The Mares’ Hurdle Race

Mares’ Hurdle Race Info
Start Time 3:40 pm
Distance 2m 4f
Type of Course Old
Number of Fences 10
Favourite Concertista

At 15:40, we get to one of the least-favourite races of the day. However, it is not the least exciting by any means. We’re talking about the Mares’ Hurdle Race. As the name tells you, this race is open only for mares. They need to be at least 4 years old and meet the 10st 10lb (4yo) and 11st 5lb (5yo+) weight requirements.

This is a Grade 1 race that was first run in 2008 and is run on the Old Course of the Cheltenham Racecourse.

Previous winners of the Mares’ Hurdle race are Roksana, Benie Des Dieux, Apple’s Jade, and Vroum Vroum Mag.

Boodles Juvenile Handicap Hurdle

Boodles Juvenile Handicap Hurdle Race Info
Start Time 4:15 pm
Distance 2m 4 1/2f
Type of Course Old
Number of Fences 16
Favourite Jeff Kidder

The penultimate race of the Cheltenham Day 1 is the Boodles Juvenile Handicap Hurdle. This is a Listed race run over a distance of 2 miles and 4 and a half furlongs. Since it’s a handicap, it means that there are no strict weight limits.

The handicapper will ensure that all horses have the same chance to win the £70,000 prize. It’s the smallest prize of the day, but that does not make this race any less competitive.

The National Hunt Steeplechase Challenge Cup

National Hunt Steeple Chase Race Info
Start Time 4:50 pm
Distance 4m
Type of Course Old
Number of Fences 25
Favourite Galvin

Last but not least is the National Hunt Chase. This is a Grade 2 race open for horses of five years and older. They will be running a 4-mile-long course, which makes it the longest race of the day.

The horses will be navigating 25 fences, which also makes this race the most challenging and the most attractive one of the day. However, it is not the highest-prized event of the Cheltenham Champion Day, as the prize is capped at £125,000.

The horses often seen in the Cheltenham Champion Day tips for this event are Carefully Selected, Champagne Classic, and Battleoverdoyen. They have the highest chances of winning this event.

The previous winners of this race are Le Breuil, Rathvinden, and Tiger Roll. Galvin joined the list of greats that have won this race, as he held off Next Destination to win the race in 2021.

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