Champion Hurdle - 2024
The Champion Hurdle is the most bet on race on Day 1 of Cheltenham Festival. The 15:30pm race is run over 2m abt ½f with the winning horse galloping away with £450,000 in prize money.
Champion Hurdle Odds
Check out the best odds that British Bookmakers offer for the favourites to win the Champion Hurdle in 2024 below. Tap ALL ODDS to view odds from more bookmakers.
NB: Champion Hurdle odds correct at the time this Cheltenham betting guide went live and are subject to change. Last updated: 06:19 on 15/03/2022.
Champion Hurdle Betting Guide
Cheltenham festival takes place from the 14th to the 17th March in 2023, and the highlight race of the first day is the Champion Hurdle Challenge Trophy at 15:30pm.
The highlight race of the opening day of the 2023 Cheltenham Festival is the Unibet Champion Hurdle, which comes with a huge £450,000 prize fund.
This year, you’ll find bookmakers offering relatively short odds on the favourites, so make sure you take advantage of bookmakers betting offers to get the most from your Cheltenham bet.
This Grade 1 race is open to 4yo+ runners, and with 15 of the last 18 winners between 6 and 8, British Bookmakers tend to lean towards horses of this age as their favourites to win.
Even this far out, most bookmakers are offering last years winner ‘Honeysuckle’ as the firm favourite to romp home as the winner of the main race on day one of the Festival.
Trained by Henry De Bromhead and ridden by Rachael Blakemore, ‘Honeysuckle’ comes into this year’s festival with a stunning 100% win record.
With impressive victories against some of the other top contenders last year, it’s easy to see why this unbeaten Bay Mare is predicted to win the this years Champion Hurdle.
Willie Mullins 7 year old ‘Appreciate It’ is another of the top runners for this years race.
This Irish Bay Gelding won last year’s Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle, and although he hasn’t competed since then, ‘Appreciate It’ has always won or placed in all races he has ran.
Another runner trained by Willie Mullins also appears in most bookmakers top 3 contenders.
‘Sharjah’ who came 2nd in last year’s Unibet Champion Hurdle Challenge Trophy and also won The Matheson Hurdle at Leopardstown in December, is expected to do well.
Although ‘Sharjah’ has been to the Cheltenham Festival 4 times, he has never finished above 2nd place, but maybe this is the 8 year old’s chance to secure a win!
Trained by Gordon Elliott, the Irish 5 year old Gelding ‘Zanahiyr’ has been in good form, placing 2nd behind ‘Sharjah’ in both the Matheson Hurdle and Unibet Morgiana Hurdle Grade 1 races.
‘Zanahiyr’ is in great form, having recently won the WKD Hurdle at Down Royal, and if conditions suit on the day, he could be in with a strong chance of winning the Champion Hurdle.
Also in British Bookmakers top 6 favourites, are previous winner ‘Epatante’ owned by J.P McManus and another Willie Mullins trained Gelding ‘Ferny Hollow’, a 6 year old Bay Gelding.
Having won the race a couple of years ago, ‘Epatante’ placed 3rd in the Champion Hurdle but has had more success recently, winning the Ladbrokes Christmas Hurdle at Kempton Park and the Betfair Fighting Fifth Hurdle at Newcastle in December.
Trainer Nicky Henderson will be looking for a victory with ‘Epatante’ but this is a strong field of runners to contend with and a second Champion’s Hurdle victory may be too much to ask for.
Willie Mullins has 3 potential runners in the top 6, with ‘Ferny Hollow’ looking like he may run.
He's won his last 5 races, with a victory over ‘Appreciate It’ at last year’s Cheltenham festival in the Weatherbys Champion Bumper and a Grade 1 win in The Racing Post Novice Chase at Leopardstown in December suggesting he's also in good form.
Cheltenham Day 1 Races
While the feature race of the day is the Champion Hurdle, there's 6 other races being run on Tuesday the 14th of March. Here's the race schedule for Day 1of the 2024 Cheltenham Festival:
- 13:30 - Supreme Novices Hurdle - [2m abt ½f]
- 14:10 - Arkle Challenge Trophy - [abt 2m]
- 14:50 - Handicap Steeple Chase - [3m abt 1f]
- 15:30 - Champion Hurdle - [2m abt ½f]
- 16:10 - Mares Hurdle - [2m abt 4f]
- 16:50 - Juvenile Handicap Hurdle - [2m abt 4½f]
- 17:30 - National Hunt Chase - [3m abt 6f]
Cheltenham Festival 2024
The Cheltenham Festival is, without a doubt, the biggest racing meet of the year, and with unrivalled betting opportunities and some of the best horses in the world set to take part, it’s not surprising that British Bookmakers are fighting for punters attention.
We recommend checking out our Cheltenham Festival betting guide which previews all of the best races to bet on each day including which bookmakers offer the best odds.
2021 - Champion Hurdle
This years Cheltenham Festival takes place from the 16th to the 19th March, with the biggest and most bet on race of day one being the Champion Hurdle Challenge Trophy...
With approximately £450,000 up for grabs in this race, there are clearly some fantastic horses and jockeys in contention for the title of winner of the Champion Hurdle.
One of this year’s front runner is the Irish Mare ‘Honeysuckle’, a 7-year-old trained by Henry de Bromhead. ‘Honeysuckle’ comes into the Champion Hurdle with a 100% win rate and it’s easy to see why British Bookmakers offer her as a favourite.
The 7 year old is now unbeaten in 10 hurdle starts, and comes into the Cheltenham Champion Hurdle race having recently won the Irish Champion Hurdle.
Last year’s winner ‘Epatante’ owned by JP McManus is another top runner. Trained by Nicky Henderson, ‘Epatante’ has won 4 of her last 5 races and is in great form coming into the race.
JP McManus already has 9 Champion Hurdle titles under his belt, and with 4 consecutive victories, he will definitely be looking to continue his winning run and have reigning champion ‘Epatante’ take a 2nd victory.
The 5-year-old French Bay Gelding ‘Goshen’ trained by GL Moore is currently also in bookmakers top 3 entries to romp home in the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham Festival.
After a poor performance last year, ‘Goshen’ won his last race at Wincanton, and seems to have regained some decent form just in time for the main race on the first day.
Gordon Elliott’s ‘Abacadabras’, another French Gelding is also in the top runners. The 7-year-old has finished in the top 2 in 9 of his last 10 races, and could be in with a strong chance of taking the prize money in the Champion Hurdle.
The last of the bookmakers top 5 contenders is ‘Silver Streak’, another Irish Gelding trained by Evan Williams. With a victory at Kempton Park and having secured 2nd place at Cheltenham in December, ‘Silver Streak’ will no doubt be a top challenger.
This race is open to 4yo+, and 13 of the last 16 winners have been between 6 and 8.
Online bookmakers usually tend to favour horses around this age, and as such have correctly featured 24 of the last 27 winners in their top 6 contenders for the race.
2020 - Champion Hurdle
The highlight race of Champion Day is the Champion Hurdle Challenge Trophy, which has a fantastic £450,000 prize fund up for grabs for the horse and jockey that triumphs...
Nicky Henderson, who won the 2017 and 2018 races with ‘Buveur d'Air’ is looking to claim his 7th Champions Hurdle title, after losing last years race to Espoir D'Allen’.
Trained by Gavin Cromwell, ‘Espoir D'Allen’, was only the 3rd 5 year old to win the race since 1985, and made history with a 15-length securing the widest winning margin in race history.
The top contenders are predominately from Ireland and France, and with 11 of the past 18 winners trained in Ireland, it’s no surprise that bookmakers favourites come from Irish stables.
23 of the last 26 winners have featured in the bookmaker’s top 6 runners, so let’s take a look at which horses bookmakers offer as the favourite to take the Champions Hurdle title.
‘Epatante’ is a firm favourite with British Bookmakers to win the Champions Hurdle.
The 6 year old French Mare is trained by Nicky Henderson and comes out of the J.P McManus stable, and with an 80% win rate, ‘Epatante’ looks extremely strong coming into the race.
Willie Mullins trained ‘Benie Des Dieux’ is another of the top contenders to win the Champions Hurdle, alongside Irish runner ‘Pentland Hills’, another Nicky Henderson runner.
4 year old ‘Solo’ from the USA, ‘Honeysuckle’ and Gordon Elliott’s ‘Envoi Allen’ are also expected to put up a strong challenge for the Champions Hurdle prize money.
The other contender’s in bookmakers top 10 are ‘Supasundae’, trained by Jessica Harrington, ‘Sharjah’ the 7 year old French Gelding trained by Willie Mullins, ‘Darver Star’ who's trained by last year’s race winner Gavin Cromwell, and ‘Pic Dorhy’ a French 5 year old.
2019 - Champion Hurdle
The Champion Hurdle will be especially exciting as Nicky Henderson’s ‘Buveur D'Air’, who has won this race for the last 2 years, returns to defend his crown for a 3rd time...
The French 8 year old has won 12 of his last 13 races, and with a 77.78% win rate, it’s no wonder bookmakers see ‘Buveur D’Air’ as a favourite to take the title for the 3rd year in a row.
‘Apple’s Jade’, the 7 year old Irish Bay mare trained by Gordon Elliott, is another of the top runners at most online bookmakers when you look at their Champion Hurdle odds.
‘Apple’s Jade’ has a pretty good record at Cheltenham, and given she has won her last 4 races and boasts a 68.42% win rate, Gordon Elliott’s mare is definitely one to keep an eye on.
British Bookmakers also see Willie Mullins ‘Laurina’ as another potential challenger for the Champion Hurdle that's taking place on Day 1 of the Cheltenham Festival.
The 6 year old French Bay Mare has never actually lost a race, and while this is a big outing for her, expectations are high, and she could easily keep the winning streak going!
‘Sharjah’, who is also trained by Willie Mullins, is also up there in the bookmakers top runners.
This 6 year old French Bay Gelding has performed well in the last 2 outings, winning the Ryanair Hurdle from Supasundae, and the Morgiana Hurdle at Punchestown in November.
The last amongst the bookmakers top 6 are ‘Melon’, yet another Willie Mullins runner, who is expected to perform well when looking at bookmakers Champion Hurdle odds.
Nicky Henderson’s ‘Verdana Blue’ is also a front-runner. Of course, there are a few outsiders that could easily steal the show, such as 'Brain Power' and also 'Supasundae'.