When does the National Hunt season start? Key Jumps fixtures and races ahead of Cheltenham Festival 2023

Get these dates in your diary!


It never truly stops but the Jumps game is set to leap into action over the coming months as the hype begins to build towards the Cheltenham Festival 2023.

A bumper crop of fixtures are on the schedule, with a plethora of top-level chases and hurdles races set to be contested throughout the 2022/23 National Hunt season.


As well as Cheltenham’s mega March meeting, there are fantastic festivals on either side of the Irish Sea to keep you entertained, including the Dublin Racing Festival at Leopardstown and Aintree’s Grand National Festival.

We’ve put together a handy calendar with dates of all the major fixtures and key renewals, which you can find below.

Chepstow – Jumps Season Opener (October 7 to 8)
Key Race: Persian War Novices’ Hurdle (Grade 2)

Cheltenham – The Showcase (October 21 to 22)

Down Royal (November 4 to 5)
Key Race: Champion Chase (Grade 1)

Cheltenham – The November Meeting (November 11 to 13)
Key Race: Paddy Power Gold Cup (Grade 3)

Haydock (November 19)
Key Race: Betfair Chase (Grade 1)

Newbury (November 25 to 26)
Key Race: Ladbrokes Trophy (Grade 3)

Newcastle (November 26)
Key Race: Betfair Fighting Fifth Hurdle (Grade 1)

Sandown Park (December 2 to 3)
Key Race: Tingle Creek Chase (Grade 1)

Fairyhouse (December 3 to 4)
Key Race: Hatton’s Grace Hurdle (Grade 1)

Cheltenham – The International (December 9 to 10)
Key Race: International Hurdle (Grade 2)

Punchestown (December 11)
Key Race: John Durkan Memorial Punchestown Chase (Grade 1)

Kempton – Christmas Festival (December 26 to 27)
Key Race: King George VI Chase (Grade 1)

Leopardstown – Christmas Festival (December 26 to 29)
Key Races: Christmas Hurdle (Grade 1), Savills Chase (Grade 1)

Chepstow (December 27)
Key Race: Welsh Grand National (Grade 3)

Cheltenham (January 1)
Key Race: Paddy Power New Year’s Day Handicap Chase (Grade 3)

Sandown Park (January 7)
Key Race: Tolworth Hurdle (Grade 1)

Ascot (January 21)
Key Race: Clarence House Chase (Grade 1)

Gowran Park (January 27)
Key Race: Thyestes Chase (Grade A)

Cheltenham – Festival Trials Day (January 28)
Key Race: Paddy Power Cotswold Chase (Grade 2)

Leopardstown – Dublin Racing Festival (February 4 to 5)
Key Races: Irish Gold Cup (Grade 1), Irish Champion Hurdle (Grade 1)

Cheltenham – The Festival (March 14 to 17)
Key Races: Champion Hurdle (Grade 1), Champion Chase (Grade 1), Paddy Power Stayers’ Hurdle (Grade 1), Gold Cup (Grade 1)

Fairyhouse – Easter Festival (April 8 to 10)
Key Race: Irish Grand National (Grade A)

Aintree – Grand National Festival (April 13 to 15)
Key Race: Grand National (Grade 3)

Ayr (April 21 to 22)
Key Race: Scottish Grand National (Grade 3)

Punchestown – Punchestown Festival (April 25 to 29)
Key Races: Champion Chase (Grade 1), Punchestown Gold Cup (Grade 1), Punchestown Champion Hurdle (Grade 1), Champion Stayers Hurdle (Grade 1)

Sandown – Jump Finale (April 29)
Key Race: bet365 Gold Cup (Grade 3)


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