What can racegoers do if the final day of Cheltenham is cancelled?


With the increased spread of coronavirus now reaching ‘pandemic’ levels, people are pining for Cheltenham Festival to be cancelled before the final day of racing.

Around 60,000 people visit for each day of the Festival, making it the largest sporting gathering in the country at the moment.

As other events such as the NBA, Premier League, Tennis and La Liga games are being cancelled due to safety concerns, pressure will be mounting on the British Horse Racing Authority to cancel tomorrow’s action.

If you’re among the 60,000 who have travelled to Cheltenham for the event, Mark Jarvis has put together a Day at the Races guide, suggesting things you can get up to around the racecourse if the actual racing is no longer going ahead.

Local attractions include Virgin hot air balloon flights, allowing you to take in the sights of the Cotswolds from above, you may even catch a birds-eye view of the racecourse itself.

Emma Gill from Visit Cheltenham offered her advice on alternative small-scale things you can get up to.

She said: “Pittville Pump Room will be hosting a special evening of live music and food. There will also be plenty going on in the centre of Cheltenham with an incredible selection of bars and restaurants.

“Cheltenham nestles against The Cotswolds as an escape without leaving behind the entertainment and culture of a big city. There’s always something on offer.”

People can also venture slightly further out for the ‘Walks with Hawks’ experience, an opportunity to catch an awe-inspiring glimpse of a variety of Birds of Prey.

Another option is to take in a show at Cheltenham’s Everyman Theatre, which on Friday will be showing Thriller Live, a spectacular concert which celebrates some of the greatest music ever written.

If all else fails, there’s always the pub. Sandford Park Alehouse and The Old Restoration are two great spots for a drink and a bite to eat in the surrounding areas of the racecourse, both serving up real ales in a friendly atmosphere.

However, if everything does go ahead as planned, you can stay up to date with the latest news and Cheltenham Festival tips here.

Mark Jarvis managing director Paul Graham said: “It’s difficult to be able to tell if the final day of the Cheltenham Festival will be cancelled because of coronavirus but, as people across the UK become more concerned about big gatherings, it isn’t unlikely.

“For the thousands of racegoers staying in the area, these things to do are an excellent way to make the most of the remaining time they have in a town that is renowned for putting on events.”

To see the guide of alternative things to do in Cheltenham in more detail, visit https://guide.mjsports.bet/at-the-races/cheltenham/.