Skip to main content Skip to site footer


Press Release 17th October 2022 Cheltenham

The Jockey Club has announced today that, after completing an extensive consultation and analysis into the best future format of The Cheltenham Festival, the event will continue to be staged in March over four days.

Over the last six months The Jockey Club has engaged with thousands of stakeholders, including racehorse owners, trainers, jockeys, racing staff, Jockey Club colleagues, loyal racing fans, broadcasters, the local community and commercial partners, to gather views and ideas about the future of The Festival. This included the potential to extend to a fifth day from March 2024.

Rigorous independent research, which was conducted with audiences who do not currently attend or watch what is now Britain’s third most attended sporting event, identified strong growth opportunities for the future. However, other factors which contributed to The Jockey Club’s finely balanced decision not to extend The Festival beyond its current four-day format included the potential impact on the racing surface, which has been thoroughly explored throughout the consultation, alongside the uncertain economic environment. 

Ian Renton, who runs Cheltenham Racecourse as Managing Director of The Jockey Club’s West Region, explained: “At The Jockey Club we care deeply about the long-term future of our sport and its role in society. That’s a mission that enables us to think differently when making decisions.

“While we explored the financial benefits and an opportunity to reach new audiences, we also found a number of counterpoints to this. For example, it is clear that it would be challenging from a turf management perspective, without further work on the track, and on balance we still feel 28 races over four days is the right format.

“This research allows us to do much more than simply answer the question of whether extending the Festival is the right thing to do. We will now evaluate all the insight with a view to improving our facilities, investing in new on-course activations and giving our loyal fanbase, participants, owners and other stakeholders the best possible experience at Cheltenham Racecourse.

“We are extremely grateful to everyone who has taken part in this process and have welcomed the opportunity to listen to racehorse owners, participants, Jockey Club colleagues, the local community, our partners, loyal racing fans and many others with a passion for our sport and The Festival.”

The Jockey Club had previously determined that the 2023 Cheltenham Festival would be run over four days, with tickets for next year’s event already on sale and demand remaining very high.


Cookie Policy

We use “cookies” to help enhance your experience and improve the functionality of our website. You can find out more in our cookie policy. We also serve cookies, some with chocolate chips, on our racecourses.