The 32Red Winter Festival is the highlight of the national hunt season at Kempton Park Racecourse. The 12 high-class hurdle and steeple chase races that take place over the 2 days just starting on Boxing Day make many people’s Christmas.
All races taking place during this years festival are sponsored by 32Red, a British online casino company. If you have never heard of 32Red before they also have a sports betting product, so that means that great odds are guaranteed for all fixtures. Antepost odds have also been available for weeks in advance on the two-day meeting’s feature races.
Day One Races
The first day of the festival is truly packed with great national hunt racing fixtures. It stages the Bonus Novice’s Hurdle Race, the Feltham Novices’ Steeple Chase, the Christmas Hurdle, the King George VI Chase, another novice’s chase and a handicap race.
Day Two Races
The second day hosts the Blackjack Juvenile Novices’ Hurdle, the Novices’ Steeple Chase, the Bingo Mares Only Handicap Hurdle, the most anticipated Desert Orchid Steeple Chase, the Bonus 25 Handicap Steeple Chase and the Casino Handicap Hurdle. The day features one of the most valuabe races run at Kempton park.
The 32Red Winter Festival is the perfect race meeting to head to on Boxing Day. It’s a family occasion so you can get your fix of the racing whilst celebrating with those close to you as the Winter Wonderland delivers everything you could possibly ask for, with entertainment for all ages.
It’s a great way to wrap up your holiday season, tickets are available now.
Taking a look at the latest odds over the last few weeks, we can see that last years winner, Might Bite is standing his ground and has remain the bookies favourite to win the race for a second consecutive year.
11 horses are still in the running to compete in the race after the brilliant Champion Chase hero Altior has been taken out.
Might Bite is the 2019 Favourite
At the time of writing Nicky Henderson’s charge is the favourite to win the Boxing Day showpiece. The chaser was soundly beaten at Haydock but despite running a disappointing race during the Betfair Chase, Nicky Henderson hasn’t yet lost the faith and he is still the odds on favourite.
Never heard of Might Bite? Here is a bit of information on him:
He won the 2018 King George VI Chase
He is a nine-year-old thoroughbred racehorse.
He won the RSA Chase at Cheltenham by a nose in a dramatic finish at the Festival in 2017
In 2018 he finished second in the Gold Cup.
He won the Betway Bowl at the Aintree Festival
He failed to win the Betfair Chase – often seen as a trial for this race.
His trainer Henderson has won many of the Grade 1 prizes on offer over the jumps and is widely regarded as one of the best trainers around.
The other Runners
Might Bite is set to renew a rivalry with Bristol DE Mai who won the Betfair Chase twice along with runner up at Haydock Park last month and last seasons Cheltenham Cup winner Native River.
The 2016 King George winner Thistlecrack, who came third in the Betfair Chase will be running.
Ruth Jefferson’s stable star Waiting Patiently is one of the bookies favourite to make a real attempt at the title.
Politologue and and Clan Des Obeaux, both trained by Paul Nicholls will be racing. Nicholls’ has had a record nine previous winners of the King George – including the awesome five-times victor Kauto Star. Politologue and Clas Des Obeaux are set to fire a twin assault at this year’s renewal with. It will be Politologue’s first time trying the three miles. He is one of the bookie favourites at this stage.
Jane Williams-trained Tea For Two is at the bottom of the odds list. Favouring slightly better are Tom George’s last year’s runner up Double Shuffle and Mark Bradstock’s 2015 Gold Cup winner Coneygree.
Gordon Elliott’s mare Shattered Love is also in the remaining pack – the last Irish trained winner was Kicking King in 2005.
11 remaining entries:
Bristol De Mai
Clan Des Obeaux
Tea For Two
The highlight of Boxing day (26th Dec) and the festive period for many is the King George VI Chase which takes place during the Winter Festival at Kempton Park. It is now the second most prestigious chase in England, surpassed only by the Cheltenham Gold Cup. The race is currently sponsored by the 32Red bookmaking firm.
The race is open to horses aged four years or older. It is run over a distance of about 3 miles (4,828 metres). There are eighteen fences to be jumped.
The inaugural race took place on the February 1937, and it was named in honour of the new British monarch, King George VI.
This is a race that attracts many recreational bettors to have a punt on the race. Installing a horse betting app or registering with an online bookmaker are the methods used by many to place a bet on the race.
There are always some superb free bets and other sign up offers available for new customers. Ahead of major meetings the betting sites occasionally release special offers to attract new accounts. We’ll list them below should there be any special offers.
£20 Risk Free Bet
Only available to new customers from UK & Northern Ireland. You must stake £10 or more at single / cumulative odds of Evens (2.0) or greater on your first bet. Free bet balance of £30 credited within 48 hours of your first bet being settled. Free Bets expire after 7 days. E-Wallet restrictions apply. Full terms and conditions apply. - see Betfred for more details 18+
In addition to new customer freebies, the bookies like to look after their existing customers with special promotional deals. These are in addition to the superb horse racing promotions that run all year round. As soon as the specials are released for Kempton we will list them below.
Money Back as a Free Bet on All Losers in the 15:05 Kempton if Might Bite Wins
Applies to the win part of each-way singles only. Max free bet £/€10 per customer. T&Cs apply
It’s not really an offer but a number of bookies pay extra places the big races. Bookies as standard are paying out each way bets at 3 places @ 1/5 odds. As race day draws closer there is a chance that extra places will be available with offers such as enhanced each way odds. Again, we will list if any bookies are paying extra places on the King George VI Chase.
The usual number of places paid for this race is two places, but a number of bookmakers including bet365 have enhanced the number of places they are paying.
If you’ve placed your bet on the King George VI Steeplechase and now you want to see how your horse gets on you’re in luck as their are plenty of options for you to choose from.
You can watch the race live on terrestrial TV, with the big-race action covered live on ITV. The dedicated satellite channel Racing UK (Sky 432/Freeview 231) covers races hosted at Kempton Park. The channel can be viewed online and on mobile.
You can also watch the ace live online with bookmakers that offer live streaming of the racing. Most firms give you the option of watching your races live after you’ve placed your bets, providing the stake is more than a given amount. Which is always handy if you are out and about on Boxing Day and want to watch the race live or withdraw any winnings straight away.
Antepost odds are available for this race now at all of the leading betting sites.
Last years Nicky Henderson trained horse Might Bite is having a second go at the race. He’s leading the odds, will he win the race like the bookies are expecting or will he be pipped at the post by Waiting Patiently, Presenting Percy or Native River?
It’s getting quite close to race day with the Christmas season being almost upon us. The bookies and tipsters will be getting ready to write their articles that are full of tips. We especially like bet365 and 888sport for blog posts with racing tips.
In the run up to big races, trainers and owners like to get the horse to run in a trial race to test the waters and see how the horse and jockey will preform. The 3m Betfair Chase run at Haydock Park (24th Nov) is often the trial race for Kempton. Take a look at the winner and the horse that contested the race. Previously nine of the last 16 winner took the race before heading to Kempton’s winter festival.
There have been a number of records set in recent years. Nichols could be worth looking out for as well as Nicky Henderson who trained last years winner. Fourteen horses have won it more than once, Desert Orchid won it four times and Kauto Star won it five times.
Most successful horse (5 wins):
Kauto Star – 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011
Leading jockey (5 wins):
Ruby Walsh – Kauto Star (2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011)
Leading trainer (9 wins):
Paul Nicholls – riding More Business (1997, 1999), Kauto Star (2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011), Silviniaco Conti (2013, 2014)
2017 – Might Bite (6/4 fav)
2016 – Thistlecrack (11/10 fav)
2015 – Cue Card (9/2)
2014 – Silviniaco Conti (15/8 fav)
2013 – Silviniaco Conti (7/2)
2012 – Long Run (15/8 fav)
2011 – Kauto Star (3/1)
2010 – Long Run (9/2)
2009 – Kauto Star (8/13 fav)
2008 – Kauto Star (10/11 fav)
2007 – Kauto Star (4/6 fav)
2006 – Kauto Star (8/13 fav)
2005 – Kicking King (11/8 fav) (*Run at Sandown Park)
2004 – Kicking King (3/1 fav)
2003 – Edredon Bleu (25/1)
2002 – Best Mate (11/8 fav)