Cheltenham Gold Cup Day Hospitality - Cheltenham Festival

Predictions For Cheltenham Festival Gold Cup Runners in 2021

The racing action of the Cheltenham Festival’s reaches fever pitch as Gold Cup Day arrives, with racegoers eagerly anticipating who the Gold Cup runners will be each year. The Gold Cup Chase is jump racing at its finest, with a talented field of runners on display year after year! Past Gold Cup winners include the likes of Al Boum Photo, Kauto Star, Best Mate, Arkle and Desert Orchid and the 2021 Magners Gold Cup Chase is sure to have us all roaring.

The Cheltenham Gold Cup is one of the most prestigious races in the Jump racing calendar and has thrown up some of the most famous horses in National Hunt history. To this date Golden Miller holds the most successful Gold Cup record, winning the race an astonishing five times during the 1930’s. The legendary Arkle and Best Mate come in behind him with three wins a piece, although Best Mate never got the chance to make it four, suffering from a heart attack at Exeter Racecourse just months before.

The Grade 1 contest became the race that we know it to be back in 1924, when ‘Fog’ Rowlands and a few others implemented it into Cheltenham Festival’s steeplechasing schedule. It first ran for £700 though now the prize fund for the Gold Cup is £625,000!

Read our Cheltenham Winners & Festival History news item for more information.

Cheltenham Festival Runners and Riders Lining Up

Cheltenham Festival’s Potential Gold Cup Runners For 2021

Although Cheltenham Festival entries are not confirmed until nearer the time in March, there are a number of potential Gold Cup Runners which the bookmakers already have their eye on:

Al Boum Photo

The 2020 Gold Cup Chase was won once again by Al Boum Photo, landing £351,687.50 for his owner Mrs. J Donnelly, trainer Willie Mullins, and jockey, Paul Townend.

It is hoped that the 8-year-old gelding will make hat-trick for the 2021 Gold Cup, coming in as the hot favourite with all the betting firms in what is a very strong listing.

But achieving a third win will be no easy feat. Best Mate was the last to do bag this impressive achievement, with the last successive Gold Cup winners before him dating back to 1971!


Coming in at a strong second place during the 2020 Gold Cup, Santini is also a firm favourite amongst the bookmakers to go all the way as one of the 2021 Gold Cup runners. During 2019, the eight-year-old managed first place in the Virgin Bet Future Stars Intermediate Chase at Sandown and second place in  Cheltenham’s Grade 1 RSA Insurance Novices’ Chase, coming in just behind Topofthegame.


Lostintranslation looks to be another favourite as one of the 2021 Gold Cup runners, having finished in third place in 2020. The eight-year-old took the crown in the Grade One Betfair Chase at Haydock in 2019, beating the likes of Bristol De Mai and Frodon. With some strong achievements behind him, it will be interesting to see how he fares during the 2021 Cheltenham Festival.


Another solid choice as one of the 2021 Gold Cup runners, Champ secured first place in the Grade One RSA Insurance Novices’ Chase during 2020 as well as the Grade 2 Berkshire Novices Chase at Newbury in 2019 and Aintree’s Doom Bar Sefton Novices’ Hurdle. The odds currently stand at 12/1 – it will be interesting to see how the Gold Cup Chase plays out in 2021!


Topofthegame has claimed some impressive wins over the years including the Grade One RSA Insurance Novices’ Chase in 2019 and the Betfred Heroes Handicap Hurdle at Sandown in 2018. During his other recent races, he has come in at a close second, making him one to watch as one of the potential Gold Cup runners for 2021.

Native River - Gold Cup 2020
Clan Des Obeaux Gold Cup 2020
Bristol De Mai Gold Cup

What is the Cheltenham Gold Cup?

The Gold Cup is an annual Grade 1 National Hunt Chase run at Cheltenham Racecourse during the Cheltenham Festival on Gold Cup Day. Naturally, racegoers early anticipate who the Gold Cup Runners will be each year.

It is the most prestigious race of The Festival, with over 70,000 racegoers flocking to course on the Friday each year. It is run over a distance of 3 miles and 2 ½ furlongs with a total of 22 fences being jumped.

It was initially introduced as a way of encouraging farmers to breed high-class horses to compete in a difficult race and is now considered to sit just behind the Grand National in prestige.

When is the Cheltenham Gold Cup Chase in 2021?

The Magners Cheltenham Gold Cup is the feature race on the last day of The Festival – Friday 19th March 2020. The race itself kicks off at 15.30 and provides the ultimate test for its runners.

Can I watch the Cheltenham Gold Cup Race on TV?

The race will be screened live on Racing TV and ITV, though nothing beats going down to The Festival and absorbing all the racing action first hand!

What is the schedule for Gold Cup Friday at Cheltenham races in 2021?

The opening race of the day is The JCB Triumph Hurdle, which kicks off at 13:30 and is the biggest in the season for juveniles.

  • 14:10: The Randox Health County Handicap Hurdle – 2m 179y
  • 14:50: The Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle – 2m 7f 213y

These three races build up to the main event of the week – The Magners Cheltenham Gold Cup which starts at 15:30. It’s a true test of endurance and ability for the runners and will put some of the greatest horses to the test.

Following the Gold Cup is:

  • 16:10: The St. James’s Place Foxhunter Steeple Chase Challenge Cup – 3m 2f 70y
  • 16:50: Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Handicap Chase – 2m 62y
  • 17:30: Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle – 2m 4f 56y

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