When is Cheltenham Festival 2021? Date, Gold Cup runner and will fans be in attendance?

THE big one is back.

Cheltenham Festival – the biggest event in Jumps racing – returns 12 months on… with a heck of a lot having happened since the last one.

These days we're stuck to watching the racing at home.

But will that change in time for the Festival? Read on to find out all you need to know about Cheltenham Festival 2021.

When is Cheltenham Festival 2021?

Cheltenham Festival lasts four days.

This year it starts on Tuesday March 16 and finishes on Friday March 19.

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Who are the Gold Cup runners?

Entries for the 2021 Cheltenham Gold Cup have been announced.

Al Boum Photo will be going for his third Gold Cup in a row and he heads the list of entries, as well as being 3-1 favourite.

The other runners entered are below. This list will be cut five days before the race and again 48 hours before.

7-1 A Plus Tard

8-1 Minella Indo, Royale Pagaille, Santini

10-1 Champ

14-1 Frodon, Kemboy

20-1 Allaho, Delta Work, Lostintranslation, Melon, Presenting Percy, Waiting Patiently

25-1 Cyrname, Imperial Aura

33-1 Bristol De Mai, Monalee, Native River, Saint Calvados, Samcro

40-1 Burrows Saint, Master Tommytucker, Vinndication, Yorkhill

50-1 Acapella Bourgeois, Battleoverdoyen, Itchy Feet, Lake View Lad, Mister Malarky, Real Steel, Shattered Love, Simply The Betts, Terrefort, The Conditional

66-1 Aso, Black Op, Lord Du Mesnil, Magic Of Light

80-1 Spyglass Hill

What are the races?

Tuesday

1.30 Supreme Novices' Hurdle

2.10 Arkle Challenge Trophy

2.50 Festival Handicap Chase

3.30 Champion Hurdle

4.10 David Nicholson Mares' Hurdle

4.50 Boodles Juvenile Hurdle

5.30 National Hunt Chase

Wednesday

1.30 Ballymore Novices' Hurdle

2.10 Festival Novices' Chase

2.50 Coral Cup

3.30 Queen Mother Champion Chase

4.10 Cross Country Chase

4.50 Grand Annual Chase

5.30 Champion Bumper

Thursday

1.30 Golden Miller Novices' Chase

2.10 Pertemps Final

2.50 Ryanair Chase

3.30 Stayers' Hurdle

4.10 Festival Plate

4.50 Dawn Run Novices' Hurdle

5.30 Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir

Friday

1.30 Triumph Hurdle

2.10 County Hurdle

2.50 Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle

3.30 Cheltenham Gold Cup

4.10 Foxhunter Chase

4.50 Mrs Paddy Power Mares' Chase

5.30 Martin Pipe Handicap Hurdle

Will fans be in attendance?

Almost certainly not – and it looks like even owners could be barred from going.

This is due to strict coronavirus guidelines.

Cheltenham Festival 2020 was one of the last events before country was plunged into its first lockdown.

And though bosses have not definitively ruled out what will happen, with cases and deaths still high all over the country it is all but certain this year's Festival will be behind closed doors.

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