Cheltenham Festival Thoughts – Calum Madell

Name: Calum Madell

Festivals Attended: 3

Why do you love the Festival?

The atmosphere and the buzz before, during and after. Everyone feels together for one thing and it’s so thrilling

Best Festival Memory and Biggest Festival Win?

Best memory was the first race I ever saw, Chapoturgeon winning the Jewson Handicap. I didn’t back him but to hear the roar for the first time was stunning. Every year though the best memory for me is the noise when the Supreme starts. Best festival memory will no doubt be this year when Magnifique Etoile runs, which my Mum and I have a small share in.

Not had much betting success at the festival at the moment in time as this is only the 2nd festival that I can legally bet. Cheltenian in the Bumper last year was my best winner. Mum has had a lot more success than me with big priced winners but backing Menorah in the Supreme in 2010 was a brilliant moment.

Do you have a favourite day and why?

Tuesday is my favourite hands down. The crowds aren’t as packed and the atmosphere is nearly as good as a Gold Cup day. The Racing is also always amazing, especially with my fascination with the 2m division.

What advice would you give someone going for the first time?

Get there early and soak in all the atmosphere and watch the races from as many different places as you can. I love to watch races right on the course and mainly on the open bit next to the grandstand which gives a great view of the whole race. Also I’d advise somebody to watch a race in the Centaur which for atmosphere is just amazing.

Which enclosure do you prefer?

Probably Club as my favourite spot to watch the racing is club only.

Do you do after Racing entertainment/eating in Cheltenham? If so where?

Nowhere in particular, just go where the crow flies. But there are some fantastic places around to eat and drink.

Any other advice for a newcomer to the festival?

Go to the parade ring and pre-parade. Have a bet and a few drinks, most importantly study the form and get ready for one of the best days of your life.

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