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The Cheltenham Festival in art: Ladies’ Day

PUBLISHED: 17:13 14 March 2014 | UPDATED: 09:46 17 March 2014

The punters begin to gather near the fences as the first race of the day begins.

The punters begin to gather near the fences as the first race of the day begins.


Alexander Small, a third-year Illustration student at the University of Gloucestershire in Cheltenham, has been busy documenting this year’s Cheltenham Festival in a series of illustrations - here are his latest drawings from the second day of The Races, Ladies’ Day.

Ronnie Scott's All Stars band, led by pianist James Pearson, play a set for racegoers who can't quite bring themselves to leave the racecourse just yet.Ronnie Scott's All Stars band, led by pianist James Pearson, play a set for racegoers who can't quite bring themselves to leave the racecourse just yet.


Rain or shine, Alexander Small documents the comings and goings, the highs and the lows, the wide-ranging characters, both human and equestrian, to be found at the Races.

The drawings, which can be seen on his blog site, will form the basis of his final major project at university.

Alex said: “The aim of these drawings is to capture the character of racing at Cheltenham from the viewpoint of the punter and spectator. All the drawings are done at the Racecourse during meetings. Everything is drawn from life, although the imagination is occasionally required to fill in the gaps when my subject has disappeared from view!”

This year, he has attended every day of The Cheltenham Festival, capturing the event in the sketchbooks he takes with him. Click the gallery at the top right of this page to see his latest work from the second day of The Races, Ladies’ Day, on Wednesday March 12.

Alex said: “Day two is Ladies Day at the Cheltenham Festival, something like National Hunt Racing’s answer to Royal Ascot. There’s a distinct lack of the Ascot pomp and ceremony to proceedings, however, and once racing is underway, it’s the usual anarchic Cheltenham going, albeit with a splash more colour.”


His original drawings are for sale and he is planning on having a series of them made into prints.

Visit to read Alex’s blog and see more of his lively drawings of life at Cheltenham Racecourse.


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