All the racing fans worldwide know about the two legendary horse racing events – the Cheltenham Festival and the Grand National. These two biggest race events are held annually, and they are only one month apart.
Both events have their hardcore fans who could claim that one is better than the other. However, we decided to do the math by ourselves. Which one is the greater racing event in terms of attendance, revenue, popular jockeys, horses? Even if we know it is a tie, let’s have a little fun and discuss this everlasting “racing event derby”.
The Number of Races
First of all, the Cheltenham Festival has 28 races in one season. The event lasts or four days and during that period the horse racing enthusiasts are able to watch live or streamed races. In the end, the audience will be able to witness the Gold Cup run at Royal Ascot. On the other hand, even if the Grand National is preceded by the Merseyside festival, it is a one-race horse racing event.
The Grade of Races
As far as the class of the races, the Grand National has mainly Grade 1 races. However, the main event is rated as a Grade 3 event. On the other hand, we have the Cheltenham Festival, during the four days of horse racing, the fans are able to watch 14x Grade 1 races, 2 x Grade 2 races, and 6x Grade 3 races. Even if this is not that of important criteria for deciding which racing event is “better”, is needed to be mentioned.
According to some jockeys, winning the Gold Cup at the Cheltenham Festival is more important than the Grand National. Thus, for the jockey who prefer this one and have more success in it, the Gold Cup is the most important annual happening. Nevertheless, other jockeys who have managed to win the National, claim the opposite. So, once again, it all comes down to personal preference.
Also, the excitement of the Grand National race is intensified, and thus, the spectators prefer watching this event. Yet, the Grand National is arguably one of the most followed and popular horse racing events on the global level. Mainly, the Spring Festival at Aintree happening throughout three days is that famous only for one race – The Grand National on Merseyside.
Betting in the UK
When it comes to betting, the National is the horse racing event with the most bets in the country. Being a most-wagered-on horse racing event, the Grand National is more popular among the punters in the UK. It is simple as that, the UK punters simply love the Aintree race. To point out, the Gold Cup, Champion Chase as well as Triumph Hurdle are among the top most-wagered-on races, too. Moreover, according to the 2018 betting analysis from some bookmakers, more than half of the top-betted-on races were made during the Cheltenham Festival.
In the final analysis, the main question will forever remain unanswered. Nobody can with certainty claim that one of the two events is bigger or better. Unless they are completely bias and obvious fans of one of the two. So, if you would ask a betting and horse racing expert which one is bigger, the Cheltenham Festival or the Grand National, they wouldn’t be able to give you a simple answer.