Cheltenham Betting Offers & Odds for 2018

Ready for all the Cheltenham betting action? At Freebets nothing quite beats the month of March and we are gearing up with all of the best 2018 Cheltenham betting odds, tips, offers & of course, free bets!

Latest Cheltenham Betting Offers

With 2018 here, the Cheltenham Festival gossip is starting to take shape now with Native River, Sizing John and Samcro all being hotly discussed ahead of next year.

We’ll keep you updated with the festival in every way imaginable, making sure we don’t just bring you the best Cheltenham betting offers, but the finest free bets, tips, enhanced odds and predictions from across the web.

As Tuesday March 13 draws closer and closer this page will be your one stop shop for everything Cheltenham betting related, so be sure to keep you bookmark this so you’re in the know!

Cheltenham Betting Review Contents

Best Cheltenham Free Bets

Cheltenham Betting Odds 2018

You’ll find all the very best Cheltenham betting odds and Trials Day offers right here.

Despite the Gold Cup being a number of months away, the bookies are already putting prices on horses, with many of last year’s contenders favoured yet again.

Time Champion Day Races – Cheltenham Day 1 Type See All Odds
13.30 Supreme Novices’ Hurdle Race Hurdle Race Odds
14.10 Arkle Challenge Trophy Steeple Chase Chase Race Odds
14.50 Festival Handicap Steeple Chase Chase Race Odds
15.30 Champion Hurdle Challenge Trophy Hurdle Race Odds
16.10 David Nicholson Mares’ Hurdle Race Hurdle Race Odds
16.50 National Hunt Chase Challenge Cup Chase Race Odds
17.30 Novices’ Handicap Chase Chase Race Odds
Time Ladies Day Races – Cheltenham Day 2 Type See All Odds
13.30 Neptune Novices’ Hurdle Race Hurdle Race Odds
14.10 RSA Steeple Chase Chase Race Odds
14.50 Coral Cup ( A Handicap Hurdle Race) Hurdle Race Odds
15.30 Queen Mother Champion Steeple Chase Chase Race Odds
16.10 Cross Country Steeple Chase Chase Race Odds
16.50 Fred Winter Juvenile Handicap Hurdle Hurdle Race Odds
17.30 Champion Bumper Bumper Race Odds
Time St. Patrick’s Day Races – Cheltenham Day 3 Type See All Odds
13.30 JLT Novices’ Chase Chase Race Odds
14.10 Pertemps Final (A Handicap Hurdle Race) Hurdle Race Odds
14.50 Ryanair Steeple Chase Chase Race Odds
15.30 Stayers’ Hurdle Hurdle Race Odds
16.10 Festival Stable Plate (A Handicap Steeple Chase) Chase Race Odds
16.50 Mares Novices’ Hurdle Hurdle Race Odds
17.30 Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Steeple Chase Chase Race Odds
Time Gold Cup Day Races – Cheltenham Day 4 Type See All Odds
13.30 JCB Triumph Hurdle Hurdle Race Odds
14.10 County Handicap Hurdle Race Hurdle Race Odds
14.50 Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle Race Hurdle Race Odds
15.30 Cheltenham Gold Cup Chase Race Odds
16.10 Foxhunter Steeple Chase Challenge Cup Chase Race Odds
16.50 Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle Hurdle Race Odds
17.30 Grand Annual Handicap Steeple Chase Challenge Cup Chase Race Odds

The Cheltenham Gold Cup odds are currently looking as follows:

Sizing John: 5/1

Might Bite: 5/1

Thistlecrack: 5/1

Douvan: 7/1

Yorkhill: 8/1

Our Duke: 12/1

Native River: 12/1

Elsewhere Faugheen is at 7/4 to take the Champion Hurdle and Death Duty looks to be a nice earner at 8/1 for the RSA Chase.

Favourite for the Ryanair Chase is Fox Norton, while Altior is a heavy favourite for the Queen Mother Champion Chase at 6/4.

There are plenty of markets all ready to bet on the Cheltenham Festival so don’t miss out just because it’s months away.

Cheltenham Betting Markets

As race week draws closer you’ll find dozens of Cheltenham betting markets to enjoy, and even now you’ll find plenty to make a few bob on.

You’ll often find better Cheltenham odds around now, with less form having been taken into account.

The To Win Any Race At Cheltenham betting market is often a good route to go down at this early stage as you won’t find out which races are running until later in the new year.

You will find odds on almost every race at the Cheltenham Festival already though, from The Gold Cup to Stayers Hurdle odds and the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle odds.


Naturally, it may become the case at this early stage your horse might not end up running at all. Plenty of bookmakers will give you Non Runner No Bet markets, which essentially means you won’t lose out.

This means it’s never too early to enjoy the Cheltenham betting markets and back your horse at good odds before they could get slimmer.

Cheltenham Free Bets 2018

Below you’ll find links to all you need to know about Cheltenham free bets. We’re experts in the free bet market, so be sure to work your way through the links below to make the most of your betting.

Also check back with us as the new year hits to get all the best Cheltenham free bet offers.

Ladbrokes Cheltenham free bet will be providing Cheltenham free bets, ante-post tips and daily racing tips throughout the Festival along with details of all the latest offers for the 2018 Cheltenham Festival. Read on to find out how to get free bets for Cheltenham plus tips on how to use your Cheltenham free bets.

Compare Cheltenham Betting Offers

Cheltenham might be months and months away but if you’re certain of a horse to back, it’s well worth checking the odds with multiple bookmakers.

Latest Horse Racing Betting Offers For Cheltenham

Cheltenham Festival 2018 offers will come later, at the turn of the year and build all the way up to the big week in March.

Last year saw a number of great offers including the Paddy Powers offer Non Runner No Bet, while you’ll find most of the UK’s best bookmakers handing out special offers. What’s more, you’ll find them all here at

Cheltenham Non Runner No Bet Offers for 2018

The ever popular Cheltenham Non Runner No Bets allow you to place your ante post bets safe in the knowledge that if for any reason your horse isn’t able to start you won’t end up out of pocket before the race even begins.

Here are the top Non Runner No Bet Offers that we’ve seen so far for 2018:

Cheltenham NRNB Racing Offers

Total offers 3
see all

Cheltenham Races 2018 – Live Updates

19/02/2018 Update – Elgin to be supplemented for Champion Hurdle after Kingwell Romp

Alan King is no stranger to preparing one for the Cheltenham Festival and his fast improving handicapper Elgin earned himself a shot at Buveur D’Air and Faugheen when he landed the Grade 2 Kingwell Hurdle at Wincanton on Saturday.

He is progressing both physically and in times of his ability and is around 20/1 for the Champion Hurdle, which isn’t a bad looking Cheltenham bet with so little in each way opposition to the market leaders.

Call Me Lord and Ch’tibello were all the rage in the pre-race market, but neither could find the answer to Elgin’s cruising speed and ability to quicken. He is a very good horse and we look forward to seeing him perform on Champion Day on the 13th of March.

16/2/2018 Update – Saint Calvados makes an Arkle market splash at Warwick

Until last weekend, the Racing Post Arkle Trophy Chase market for Champion Day at Cheltenham was dominated by just one horse – Footpad. The Willie Mullins trained novice remains a warm order at the top of the market for the Arkle, but at Warwick on Saturday, a legitimate danger was unearthed in in the form of Harry Whittington’s Saint Calvados.

Petit Mouchoir is 5/1 second favourite for Henry De Bromhead and the grey can improve, but Saint Calvados is right behind him in the Arkle betting market now at around 6/1 and after that impressive success in the Kingmaker Novice Chase, he is a major player.

13/2/2018 Update – Kalashnikov in Supreme hunt after Betfair romp

The Betfair Hurdle at Newbury is often a springboard for top class hurdlers, with big names such as My Tent Or Yours on the roll of notable former winners. The 2018 version of the top handicap race was widely regarded as one of the strongest assembly of horses for the race in some time, but after being backed into 8/1 favouritism, the Amy Murphy trained Kalashnikov produced a brilliant performance to win, denying an army of big stable fancies in behind.

It was a popular victory and one stamped with quality, prompting the online bookmakers to cut his price to a general 7/1 for the Champion Day opener, the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle.

Getabird is a daunting prospect at the head of the betting market, but Kalashnikov has quickly developed into the UK’s chief hope of glory in the Festival curtain raiser.

9/2/2018 Update – Altior out to steal the show in Game Spirit acid test

Nicky Henderson is quickly gathering an army of top talent for the Cheltenham Festival in March and already, the likes of Santini and On The Blind Side are vying for favouritism in their Grade 1 Novice race targets.

But much like Sprinter Sacre before him, Altior is very much the star of the show at Seven Barrows stables and the 2016 Supreme and 2017 Arkle winner bids to get his season under way in the 2.25pm Game Spirit Chase at Newbury on Saturday, a race he is no bigger than  5/6 for, with the Paul Nicholls trained Politologue trading at 11/4 to topple the Queen Mother Champion Chase favourite.

Altior is without a doubt the most exciting talent around at two miles and National Hunt racing and indeed the Cheltenham Festival needs to see the eight-year-old return to the fore on Saturday with a clear round of jumping, and a victory.

6/2/2018 Update – Footpad & Buveur D’Air harden for Champion Day

Leopardstown produced a stunning two day National Hunt Festival last weekend, which delivered on every level of excitement and quality. There were Cheltenham clues and contenders all over the place, but in terms of the opening day of the Festival on Tuesday 13th of March, two horses really cemented their favouritism for their respective Champion Day targets.

In the Irish Arkle, Footpad produced yet another outstanding display of jumping and running for trainer Willie Mullins. He is now no bigger than 11/10 to win the Racing Post Arkle Trophy at the Cheltenham Festival.

With latest Stayers’ Hurdle favourite Supasundae denying Faugheen in the Irish Champion Hurdle, the defending Cheltenham Champion Buveur D’Air hardened into 1/2 to defend his crown, after a smooth success in the Contenders’ Hurdle at Sandown the same afternoon. His build up has been assured and classy, and he will be really hard to beat next month.

Ladbrokes Non Runner Money back Cheltenham

2/2/2018 Update – Irish Stars on show for Cheltenham at Dublin Racing Festival

On Saturday and Sunday in Leopardstown we will be treated to no less than seven Grade 1 races for the Dublin Racing Festival, an amazing meeting in its own right but also a key platform to put the final touches on Cheltenham Festival preparations for many of the major players.

In Saturday’s Irish Champion Hurdle, Champion Day second favourite Faugheen will be favourite with stablemate Melon to put one of their hooves up as the most likely danger to Champion Hurdle favourite Buveur D’Air.

On Sunday, the Irish Gold Cup at 3.35pm Leopardstown could see Jessica Harrington’s Our Duke establish himself as a legitimate contender for the Cheltenham Gold Cup in March. He is currently a top price of 11/1 to land the big one on Gold Cup Friday, but that price could vanish shortly after 3.40pm on Sunday afternoon.

With an army of top class supporting races, Leopardstown is the place to watch for Festival clues on the Irish front this weekend.

Betfair NRNB Cheltenham Offer 2018

30/01/2018 Update – All Eyes on Faugheen in the Irish Champion Hurdle

There is a fault in the machine that is Faugheen, one Willie Mullins is adamant is fixed ahead of his pre-Champion Hurdle warm up in the Irish version at Leopardstown this weekend.

Faugheen opened up at 1/1 to win this race, but confidence in the ten-year-old has taken a knock in the eyes of the punters, as his stablemate Melon has been backed into 7/4, with Faugheen drifting to a top price of 6/4 for the showpiece of the inaugural Dublin Racing Festival. If Faugheen comes through this test and shows his best, he is sure to be all the rage for the Champion Hurdle on Day 1 of Cheltenham.

Also running on the weekend is the brilliant novice chaser Footpad, who must overcome talented grey horse Petit Mouchoir in order to cement his claims for the Arkle Chase in six weeks time.

28/01/2018 Update – Cream Rises on testing Cheltenham Trials Day

On Saturday, Cheltenham hosted Festival Trials Day and two stars emerged in Definitely Red, now a contender for the Gold Cup after his Cotswold Chase win, and Agrapart, who was targeted for the Cleeve Hurdle and got the better of course specialist Wholestone in a terrific finish.

Earlier on in the opening 12.40pm Triumph Trial Hurdle, Apple’s Shakira cemented her claims for the Grade 1 JCB Triumph Hurdle on Cheltenham Gold Cup Day on March 16th. Going off at 1/7f, she was out of her comfort zone on ground that would’ve been soft enough for her, but her ability and track experience shone through. Nicky Henderson’s full-sister to Apple’s Jade is now no bigger than 7/2 and very much the favourite for the juvenile hurdling showpiece.

Roacebets VIP tickets for Cheltenham

24/01/2018 Update – New potential Festival Stars shine on Saturday

Saturday 20th of January was seen as a slog fest where only mudlarks would shine, but it produced some excellent performances from a few really nice young horses. In the 1.50pm at Ascot, La Bague Au Roi produced a spellbindingly good performance and catapulted herself toward the head of the market for the OLBG Mares’ Hurdle and the Sun Bets Stayers Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival.

Harry Fry’s Acting Lass won the 3.00pm Handicap Chase at Ascot and he looks a class act in the making and will have several Festival options, while the evergreen Kim Bailey produced First Flow to win at Novice Hurdle at Haydock in fine style, crediting the horse with quotes as low as 16/1 for the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle on Champion Day.

21/01/2018 Update – Ryanair Chase case hardens for Un De Sceaux

Over the Christmas period, the Willie Mullins stable was very much under a bit of a cloud, but in the past couple of weeks, he has returned to form and his brilliant Grade 1 machine Un De Sceaux produced another performance laced with class in the Clarence House Chase at Ascot on Saturday, further cementing his claims to a third Cheltenham Festival success in a few weeks time.

The loveable ten-year-old is no bigger than 7/2 for the race and a top price of around 11/4 with the Non-Runner No Bet concessions out there at the moment. Sure, 11/4 is quite a short price about a Grade 1 Festival race, but Un De Sceaux won the race in impressive fashion last year and has not put a foot wrong so far this season. He must go to the Festival with a massive chance once again.

Paddy Power Cheltenham Offer

18/01/2018 Update – Un De Sceaux set for Cheltenham prep race at Ascot this weekend

The mighty Un De Sceaux has been declared to run at Ascot on Saturday 20th of January, in the Grade 1 Clarence House Chase, a race he won last year en route to winning the Ryanair Chase in determined fashion. Un De Sceaux has won two of his three Cheltenham Festival races and the Ryanair Chase is one of two feature contests on St Patrick’s Thursday.

Un De Sceaux is a general 4/1 chance to win the Ryanair Chase again in March of 2018, a price which is sure to get slashed should he wins the Clarence House Chase, a race he will be odds-on to do so in.

The 10-year-old is a class act and his supporters will be making sure they get their Non-Runner No Bet cash on him to snatch some great Cheltenham odds about the Ryanair betting market leader.

15/1/2018 Update: The 2018 Cheltenham Festival is now less than 2 months away

On Tuesday 13th March at 1.30pm, the waiting will be over as the famous ‘Cheltenham roar’ will mark the start of the 4-day Festival when the tapes go up for the opening race on ‘Champion Day’ – The Sky Bet Supreme Novices’ Hurdle race.

The top jockey and trainer for the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle are Ruby Walsh and Willie Mullins with 5 wins apiece and it’s the Mullins trained Getabird who is the new 7/2 favourite (with 888sport) following his easy win in the Grade 2 Sky Bet Moscow Flyer Novice Hurdle at Punchestown on Saturday.

The feature race on Day 1 is the Champion Hurdle where last year’s winner Buveur D’air trained by Nicky Henderson is the solid 4/6 odds on favourite with Coral to defend his crown and he looks the one they all have to beat.

His main rival, the Willie Mullins trained Faugheen was pulled up at Leopardstown back in December on only his second race since a long lay-off with injury and has drifted out to around 5/1 as a result.

Next in the Champion Hurdle betting comes the likes of Melon at 8/1 (Boylesports), Yorkhill 12/1 (Boylesports) and last year’s runner up My Tent Or Yours (16/1 William Hill).

Stay tuned as we will post all the latest Cheltenham news and market moves on this page in the build up to Cheltenham 2018.

Cheltenham Betting Results

The Action – Cheltenham 2018 Races & Results (To Follow)

What & When Is This Year’s Cheltenham Festival?

The 2018 Cheltenham Festival gets underway on March 13 and goes through to March 16 with a whole host of top class racing action.

Taking place at Prestbury Park, the festival is without a doubt the pinnacle of the National Hunt horse racing calendar and the feature races are the four major championships; the Gold Cup, Champion Chase, World Hurdle and Champion Hurdle.

Every year the festival features the best horses, jockeys and trainers in jump racing and each day has at least one major race for punters to really study the field.

As the festival draws closer, we’ll be sure to update you with the latest tips and offers, so you know exactly where to put your money. As for the 2018 festival, here’s the schedule for Cheltenham, even if it is many months away…

Cheltenham Festival Day One – Tuesday 13 March 2018:

Day one sees a number of big races, kicking off the Cheltenham Festival in style. The Supreme Novices’ Hurdle is one of the first up and was won by Labaik last year. The Champion Hurdle follows with some of the country’s most renowned trainers aiming to get their hands on some of the £400,000 prize pot.

Cheltenham Festival Day Two – Wednesday 14 March 2018:

Wednesday sees plenty more action with around seven races throughout the day. You’ll always get a number of great free bets and offers on the RSA Chase, won by Nicky Henderson’s Might Bite last year. The race is also a favourite of Willie Mullins, who’s trained horses to victory on a number of occasions.

The Queen Mother Champion Chase is another favourite within the camp, and we’ll be sure to bring you the best odds when we get them.

Cheltenham Festival Day Three –  Thursday 15 March 2018:

The anticipation for Friday’s Gold Cup builds on the Thursday, with the Stayers’ Hurdle providing the perfect support act. Run on a distance of around three miles on the new course, it’s a big race for punters, with plenty of money going on last years winner Nichols Canyon.

The Ryanair Chase is another of Thursday’s finest and has seen a Willie Mullins horse win for the last two years. Will he make it three in a row in 2018?

Cheltenham Festival Day Four – Friday 16 March 2018:

Friday of the Cheltenham Festival means only one thing, the Cheltenham Gold Cup. Gold Cup day is one of the biggest in the horse racing calendar and the bookies will be begging you to use their Gold Cup free bets and promotions.

With a prize pot of over £500,000, it’s one of the most lucrative races in the sport and is run over three miles, taking in 22 fences. Last year was won by Sizing John, a 7/1 shot ridden by Robbie Power. He’s among the Cheltenham betting favourites again with bookies already backing him at 6/1. However, there’s still a way to go and the race is well worth studying the form for.

It’s definitely worth getting involved in the festivities and below you can find out how to make the most of Cheltenham Gold Cup betting.

Cheltenham Betting Preview – Runners

The Returning Champions

2017 Unibet Champion Hurdle winner Buveur D’Air will be all the rage on Day 1 as he returns to defend his crown as will Gold Cup winner Sizing John on Day 4.

Special Tiara is also on course for the Queen Mother Champion Chase, a race he won last year although, sadly, Nichols Canyon will not make it back-to-back Stayers Hurdle victories. The eight-time Grade 1 winner was fatally injured at Leopardstown over the Christmas period.

Amongst this year’s short-priced runners, along with their current Cheltenham betting odds, are:

  • Buveur D’Air (8/11 Champion Hurdle)
  • Footpad (6/4 in the Arkle)
  • Apples Jade (even-money in the Mares Hurdle)
  • Samcro (7/4 in the Ballymore Hurdle)
  • and Altior, the 6/4 favourite in the Champion Chase

Previous Cheltenham Gold Cup Winners:

2017: Sizing John

2016: Don Cossack

2015: Coneygree

2014: Lord Windermere

2013: Bobs Worth

Cheltenham Trials Day

Before the Cheltenham Festival kicks off though, you’ll get the chance to sharpen up your skills and bet on the Cheltenham Trials Day.

Not only is it the chance to take advantage of a few Cheltenham free bets early on, it’s also a great opportunity to study the form ahead of race day in March. This year it will fall on January 27, and with 2018 upon us, horses are beginning to emerge as favourites.

Amy Murphy’s Kalashnikov is being heavily backed for trials day, with the horse currently unbeaten following an impressive run at Doncaster recently, while Willoughby Court is also being discussed among the experts as the six-year-old faces a busy winter.

You won’t get a better chance to discover a potential Cheltenham winner than the Trials Day which take place in late January.

Q&As on How to bet on Cheltenham

Fixed odds are the prices which you agree to take when placing your bets. This price, 12/1 for example, cannot go smaller. It means you are guaranteed a £12 profit to a £1 bet should your selection win. However, some bookmakers offer ‘Best Odds Guaranteed’ meaning you will win more if your selection wins at a starting price greater than 12/1
An SP is the ‘Starting Price’ which is the odds each horse is at the moment a race starts. Unless you take a fixed-odds price it represents the odds of return that winnings bets will be paid at.
Each-way betting is a double-chance bet with winnings guaranteed if your horse wins and a return guaranteed if your selection finishes in the frame.
Multiple bets see some or all winnings from one winning selection placed on to one or more other runners. In the case of four fancies you could place a ‘Yankee’ which is the name for a bet which has 11 multiple parts. Those parts are 6 x Doubles where winnings from one horse go on to another (selections A-B, A-C, A-D, B-C, B-D, C-D) plus 4 x Trebles (A-B-C, A-B-D, A-C-D, B-C-D) and an Accumulator: A-B-C-D.
Tote bets are wagers which are placed into a pool. The money in the ‘Totepool’, less a deduction, is divided amongst winning ticket holders. You can place bets into to Tote pools at many of the leading online sportsbooks.
The Cheltenham Festival is a veritable betting orgy and all major bookmakers will be offering special offers to not only get your business but to make sure they keep it for the whole four days. Carefully dissecting new customer offers, price boosts and free bets and using them all on one race is an artful way of putting the odds very much in your favour. For example at least one firm will be offering 33/1 about a short priced favourite to new customers. Another will simply be issuing free bets to new customers and another giving you your stakes back if your selection comes second to the favourite in a showcase race.

Where to Find the Latest 2018 Cheltenham Betting Tips

Taking advantage of the free Cheltenham bets available when joining an online bookmaker is an excellent way to boost your winnings on the Cheltenham Festival and can at least help ensure that you don’t lose when using your free bet. There are other ways to maximise the value you get from your Cheltenham betting at this year’s Festival.  

You can also boost your Cheltenham betting with a variety of free bet refund offers and promotions released by online bookmakers which can result in receiving a free bet as a consolation for backing a losing selection.

It’s not only free bets that will help bolster your betting bank. There are bonuses that will boost the returns from your successful Cheltenham Festival bets and you should always make sure you are getting the best odds for your selections at Cheltenham Festival.  

At, we think it’s a great idea to have accounts with a number of different bookmakers. You just need to know where to look for the best and latest free bet offers and bonuses or which bookmaker is currently offering the best Cheltenham Festival odds, and make sure you make the most of them.

This is where comes in.  We monitor all the free bet offers and promotions from online bookmakers and update the site constantly with about £2,000 worth of free bet offers and promotions on any given day.

During the Cheltenham Festival, you can visit and find all the very latest Cheltenham free bet offers and bonuses every day and compare odds for your horses to make sure you are not losing out on the best Cheltenham Festival odds.

Alternatively, you can follow us on Twitter where we regularly release news of all the free bet offers, bonuses and promotions as we add them to the website.

Cheltenham Betting Tips

How Can I Watch The Live Action?

In Great Britain, the Cheltenham Festival will be broadcast live on ITV and specialist racing channel, Racing UK.

You can also watch all the races online by placing a qualifying bet (normally requiring a £1 minimum stake) at any of the major UK facing online bookmakers:  Coral, Ladbrokes, William Hill, Betfred etc.

Cheltenham Betting on Social Media

There are countless social media streams covering the happenings at the Cheltenham Festival. For the most up to date information on non-runners, Cheltenham results, news and even travel information @CheltenhamRaces, the official Twitter account of Cheltenham Racecourse.

Authority sites such as At The Races (@AtTheRaces), Racing Post (@RacingPost) and Racing UK (@Racing_UK) are equally as good and often break Cheltenham stories first.

But fear not your favourite bookmakers are sure to keep you abreast of their Cheltenham free bet offers, enhanced odds, concessions, news and results via their Twitter feeds.

The Cheltenham Festival – The ‘How To’ Guide

Cheltenham Betting – How to make the most of it

Cheltenham betting odds have constantly changed and been updated during the months leading up to Festival.  Impressive prep runs, disappointing homework, injury, improvement and weight of money are all ingredients thrown into a mix which ultimately gives us the latest Cheltenham betting odds.

As the countdown clock unwinds and months become weeks and then days the Cheltenham betting markets do settle down somewhat but online bookmakers then begin to ramp up their marketing activities meaning they start to issue Cheltenham free bets and devise concessions that can result in free bets – such as stakes returned if the favourite wins a certain race.

Cheltenham Form – How to Read the Racecard

Of course the latest Cheltenham betting odds are all based on form and how people interpret that form.  But, make no mistake, the best recent form does not make horses win races, it is simply an indicator of what we can expect.

The first form most people spot is recent finishing positions, that is the short list of numbers alongside a horse’s name which indicates where they have finished in recent starts. Ironically this can be the most misleading of all the information on a race-card as it does not indicate how many rivals it raced against of the quality of the races it has been contesting.

RaceCard Cheltenham

While form-figures of 1-2-1-1-2-1-1 may impress, only when you look at the previous races will you realise these impressive finishes came in poor races often against just one or two opponents.

Horse racing form is dissected more than any other sport, everything can be found on a racecard from the winning time of previous race starts to distances, in-running comments, equipment a horse wore (such as blinkers, visors or cheek pieces), expert analysis and a whole lot more.

Initially reading a race-card can be intimidating and confusing but there are plenty of ‘how to read a race-card guides’ to be found somewhere amongst major online bookmaker’s sites especially during Cheltenham Festival time.

Cheltenham Bet Types – How to decide your bet type

There’s no end of bet types you can choose when placing a bet on the Cheltenham Festival, from simple ‘win’ bets to ‘Tricasts and Trifectas’, ‘Exactas’ to the ‘Scoop 6’.

Ultimately when betting on the Cheltenham Festival it is best to decide what you want to achieve before choosing your bet type.  Yes, naturally we all want to win, but winning big may require a complex multi-leg bet.  Winning small, and with a far better chance of getting a return, something like an each-way bet may be a better option.

A win bet is obviously the most straightforward and, in a number of races amongst the leading bookmakers, get unlucky with one of these during the Cheltenham Festival and you are likely to receive a free bet as compensation.  Free bet concessions include things like coming second to the favourite or being beaten by half-a-length or less.

How each way bets work

An each-way wager splits your bet stakes between a win bet and a place bet.  So, if your selection finishes third you will receive winnings on part of your stake at a fraction of your selections price (normally a quarter of the odds).  So, back at 10/1 shot that wins for £1 each-way (a bet that will cost £2) and your return will be £11 for the win part of the bet plus an additional £3.50 for the ‘place’ part (a quarter of 10/1 is 5/2 and £1 at 5/2 gives you a £3.50 return) – £14.50 in total returns.

Other bet types

An ‘exacta’ or ‘straight-forecast’ requires you to select the first and second in correct order, while a ‘tricast’ or ‘trifecta’ need you to find first, second and third in correct order. Naturally this is no easy task but, especially somewhere like the Cheltenham Festival where there are huge field sizes, the returns can be massive.

Most online sportsbooks will have a simple explainer as to the bet types they take and how dividends are calculated.  This is in addition to guides on the popular multiple bets such as Lucky 15’s and Lucky 31’s.

How to understand Cheltenham betting odds

Most people have a good grasp of betting odds, albeit as many people tuning into the Cheltenham Festival will be placing a horse racing bet for the very first time, here’s a quick run-down.

Odds are normally displayed in one of two ways – Fractional and Decimal.  With fractional odds you will see two numbers, such as 5/2. Here the first number indicates how much you will win and the second number how much you have to wager to receive these winnings.  So, a £2 stake at 5/2 will yield £5 in winnings plus your £2 stake will be returned.

The same price displayed in decimal odds will be shown as 3.50.  This shows you how much you will receive in winnings including a 1.0 (or £1) stake.

For the most part UK and Irish punters choose to see fractional odds.  Naturally the bigger the price, theoretically the less likely a selection will win.  But, consequently, when one of these outsiders does prevail, the more you will receive in winnings.

How to Choose a Cheltenham Winner

Finding Cheltenham winner should be simple, in theory.  With 28 races to choose from, and a number of ‘championship races’ where all runners carry the same weight, there is normally a short-priced favourite or two to pin your hopes on.

Cheltenham Betting Winner

Favourites are the shortest priced horse in the betting and they become a short price due to the ‘weight of money’.  The ‘betting favourite’ earns its name and price due to it being the favourite amongst punters and their bets combine to see its price contract.  Theoretically the opinion of the many should ultimately give us the most likely winner of any race by giving us a ‘favourite’.

So, you can simply follow the crowd and back favourites blind in the belief that the opinion of established punters is worth more than your own.

But there are plenty of factors to consider when placing any bet.  Is your horse stamina-laden?  If so it may run above the level of form that it has previously shown at Cheltenham as races are normally run at a very fast pace.  Is there a likelihood of rain turning the going to ‘heavy’?  Some horses excel in heavy going and others can leave their form at home if racing on bottomless ground.

Alternatively you could read more into jockey bookings.  Some jockeys have the choice of rides and they should know better than anyone which horses have the best chance.  Ruby Walsh, for example, has had a remarkable 56 winners at the Cheltenham Festival.

The Irishman has had at least two winners at every Cheltenham Festival since 2004 (a remarkable seven in 2009 and 2016) and following his rides looks sure to yield more winners in 2018.

Cheltenham Betting Tips & Tricks

  • Consider backing any selections priced at 4/1 or greater each-way.  This way, should they finish in the frame you will receive your stake back or show a profit.
  • Place your bets early – all major firms are offering ‘Best Odds Guaranteed’ so there is no downside and the considerable upside of getting a price better than the SP (starting price).
  • Take full advantage of race day concessions and Cheltenham free bet offers. There are some amazing betting bargains to be had!

Q&As on How to bet on Cheltenham

Fixed odds are the prices which you agree to take when placing your bets. This price, 12/1 for example, cannot go smaller. It means you are guaranteed a £12 profit to a £1 bet should your selection win. However, some bookmakers offer ‘Best Odds Guaranteed’ meaning you will win more if your selection wins at a starting price greater than 12/1
An SP is the ‘Starting Price’ which is the odds each horse is at the moment a race starts. Unless you take a fixed-odds price it represents the odds of return that winnings bets will be paid at.
Each-way betting is a double-chance bet with winnings guaranteed if your horse wins and a return guaranteed if your selection finishes in the frame.
Multiple bets see some or all winnings from one winning selection placed on to one or more other runners. In the case of four fancies you could place a ‘Yankee’ which is the name for a bet which has 11 multiple parts. Those parts are 6 x Doubles where winnings from one horse go on to another (selections A-B, A-C, A-D, B-C, B-D, C-D) plus 4 x Trebles (A-B-C, A-B-D, A-C-D, B-C-D) and an Accumulator: A-B-C-D.
Tote bets are wagers which are placed into a pool. The money in the ‘Totepool’, less a deduction, is divided amongst winning ticket holders. You can place bets into to Tote pools at many of the leading online sportsbooks.
The Cheltenham Festival is a veritable betting orgy and all major bookmakers will be offering special offers to not only get your business but to make sure they keep it for the whole four days. Carefully dissecting new customer offers, price boosts and free bets and using them all on one race is an artful way of putting the odds very much in your favour. For example at least one firm will be offering 33/1 about a short priced favourite to new customers. Another will simply be issuing free bets to new customers and another giving you your stakes back if your selection comes second to the favourite in a showcase race.

How to Get 2018 Cheltenham Free Bets

With the whole country looking to back a horse over Cheltenham Festival week, you’ll find almost every bookmaker offering fantastic free bets and generous deposit bonuses.

It’s the same each year and you can really make the most of the week by taking advantage of as many free Cheltenham bets and free bet bonuses as possible.

And while, naturally, you might find the odd piece of small print, at we spell out all the terms and conditions of each bookmaker’s introductory free bet offer and deposit bonuses to save you the time and effort.

With the help of you can get access to thousands of pounds worth of free Cheltenham Festival bets and there is no easier way to profit from betting than betting for free and making the most of the best cheltenham offers.

Three Easy Steps to Get Cheltenham Festival Free Bets:

Choose a free bet offer: Check out our extensive list of free bets, ensure you read and comprehend the main conditions for wagering requirements, then click ‘CLAIM IT NOW’ when you see a free bet offer that you like.

Register with the online bookmaker: Fill out the online registration form and enter the promo code if appropriate. You’ll need to declare your payment details so be sure to have them to hand. You are entrusting your bookmaker with your financial details, so only promotes reputable bookmakers.  You can browse our reviews in the Bookmakers section of our site.

Deposit funds and place a bet: In many cases your first deposit can be as small as £5 or £10, although this will probably limit the size of your free bet.  We recommend you start with some of the smaller free bet offers until you find your feet and take those that 100% match your first bet or deposit or perhaps even give you more than your first bet or deposit.

That’s it!  One you place your first horse racing bet, you’ll get your free bet to use on the Cheltenham Festival betting markets. are always seeking out the latest bookmaker offers and have free bets for all the ‘blue chip’ bookies and many of the new breed of online bookmakers and sportsbooks which have materialized in recent times.

How To Use Cheltenham Free Bets

Most bookmakers today have sites that are incredibly easy to navigate and you’ll have no problem cashing in your Cheltenham Festival free bet.

How you use your free bet can vary from bookmaker to bookmaker, with some restrictions being in place when it comes to both spending it and withdrawing any winnings.

However, those with another bookmaker account or an account with a betting exchange are able to lock-in a profit from free bets without any risk. You can calculate how much profit can be locked into your free bets with our Back/Lay Hedging Calculator.

Restrictions on free bets vary between bookmakers and it is in your best interests to know what to look for.  It can save time and disappointment later down the line and will help you make the best of the your Cheltenham free bets.

What to Know Before Using Your 2018 Cheltenham Festival Free Bets

  1. Free Bet stakes are not included in returns: It’s not standard practice for bookmakers to include your Free Bet stake in any potential winning returns you claim.  Typically you will only receive the winnings from your Free Bet.
  2. Minimum Odds: The majority of Free Bet Deposit Bonuses come with a minimum odds qualifying requirement that usually varies between about 1/5 (1.20) and 6/4 (2.50).
  3. Rollover Requirement: Bookmakers will often have a rollover requirement on your initial Free Bet Deposit Bonus that stipulates that your initial Free Bet bonus must be wagered a set number of times before you’re permitted to withdraw any potential Free Bet winnings.
  4. Free Bet Expiry: Any Free Bets will almost always come with an expiry date.  These cut off dates vary, but are usually within either 7 or 30 days of them being first awarded.
  5. Bet Type Restrictions: Free Bets can almost always be used as a single bet and they are also usually fine to use in accumulators.
  6. Betting product restrictions: A Free Bet is usually restricted to be used in the specific area it was allocated for so, for example, a sportsbook Free Bet will only be acceptable for use in the bookmaker sportsbook and can’t be used in the casino or poker room.

The Only Cheltenham Betting Advice You’ll Need

  • Open accounts with many different bookmakers – The more free bets the better!
  • Work out your potential returns – Get the best Cheltenham Festival odds for your selections by comparing bookmakers’ odds with our betting calculator.
  • Find free bet refunds and pay out bonuses – Look for bets on the Cheltenham Festival such as non-runner offers. These can help with your festival betting returns.
  • Keep an eye on social media for offers – Make sure you never miss an offer by following our daily updates on Twitter.

Cheltenham Betting Apps & Race Commentary

As an additional treat, you can catch all the latest Cheltenham news with betting apps and race commentary.

Naturally, the Cheltenham Festival 2018 is a while off, but it’s never too early to be prepared.  

There are some great horse racing Cheltenham apps you can use to access the latest information when the festival approaches, along with options for live streaming and Cheltenham commentary radio too!  

William Hill Radio is the most popular racing radio channel in the country and they have a team of top class pundits, racing experts and presenters to take you through the Cheltenham Festival with great tips, banter and of course their free Cheltenham commentary radio service.

In the minutes leading up to a race, the experts will give their best bet on the race so you have time to have a quick flutter, then when the race is off they switch over to live commentary throughout the day so whether you’re at home, work or on the move, you won’t miss a thing with the William Hill racing app.

In terms of finding form, tips, results and cards for the Cheltenham Festival, there is some great free apps you can use. The Racing Post iOS app is by some margin the most popular horse racing betting app, with comprehensive access to the latest racecards, form and of course the latest prices and markets across Cheltenham.

You can also take advantage of cool features such as “Racing Post Predictor”, which predicts the outcome of a race for you using their statistical program to generate a likely result!

AtTheRaces (ATR) and Racing UK are best known as being the two main horse racing channels in the UK, but both operations also provide very good horse racing Cheltenham apps too where you can access all the racecards, results, form, free racing tips and best odds for all the Cheltenham Festival races.

If you’re looking for more Cheltenham betting apps then sites like GG and OLBG are also hugely popular amongst the horse racing community and work really well on mobile devices.

In an age of mobile-friendly design, you can access the Racing Post and others simply by visiting their mobile sites on your smartphone or tablet’s internet browser, so there is a wealth of options for you to consider for all your Cheltenham Festival information and coverage.

Horse Racing News