Beginner’s Guide to the Cheltenham Festival 2017

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UNITED KINGDOM — It’s that time of the year once again; when a significant portion of the United Kingdom and neighboring nations ready themselves for one of the biggest race meetings of the year. Yes, the Cheltenham Festival is fast approaching, and while some gents wait in anticipation for the annual event, others are still left wondering what the fuss is all about.

The Cheltenham Festival is one of the largest – if not the largest – jockey race tracks in the entire universe. It’s a place where both humans and horses establish their reputations as world-class competitors. In addition, during the event, gentlemen from almost all walks of life form a bond, a brotherhood amongst the most well-know people in society.

Other than the elite riders and thoroughbreds taking part at Cheltenham, the event sees over 250,000 people attend the four-day event, with many enjoying a glass or two of some of the finest beverages in the world. It can be rowdy as the days progress, bearing in mind The Mirror’s reports that in 2014, people consumed more than 220,000 pints in the four-day event.

For those gents who are new to the sport, the Cheltenham Festival is a second only to the Grand National in the UK and will run from the 14th to the 17th of March. According to Betfair, it consists of four feature races: The Champion Hurdle, Champion Chase, World Hurdle, and Cheltenham Gold Cup. The Cheltenham Festival is like the climax of the jump racing season and by far one of the most prestigious social events in the calendar. That said, two vital factors that stand out for the modern gent are what to wear and where to stay.

When it comes to the ideal outfit, there is technically no dress code, but it’s still imperative to look good when attending Cheltenham. The Cheltenham Jockey Club even says that guests can either dress to impress or opt for comfort and class. Essentially, the style depends on which Cheltenham enclosure you’re attending. If you’re going to the most expensive area, you should dress smart yet still have that somewhat country-style that’s close to home (think brogues and tweeds). Of course, March features some of the craziest, most unpredictable weather, so it’s always best to keep an eye on the forecast and adapt accordingly.

If the idea of attending the Cheltenham Festival is too overwhelming, take note that there are quite a few places where people can enjoy the event, while indulging in some food and drink. The Cheltenham’s Panoramic Restaurant, for instance, offers a great atmosphere that goes along with a nice full course meal. Best of all, since it’s nestled on the fifth floor of the grandstand, it presents a stunning view of the entire racetrack, so people will never miss the action.

These are just a few simple tips on how a bona fide gentleman can enjoy all the action during the Cheltenham Festival. For more style advice, upcoming events, and other necessaries, be sure to check out the blog section of The Next Gentleman.