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Fame And Glory makes winning return to Ascot

15 Oct 2011

This year's Gold Cup hero Fame And Glory returned to form with a comfortable success under an inspired Jamie Spencer ride in the QIPCO British Champions Long Distance Cup.

Fame And Glory storms to victory under Jamie Spencer in the QIPCO British Champions Long Distance Cup. Image courtesy of racingfotos.com.

This year’s Gold Cup hero Fame And Glory returned to form with a comfortable success under an inspired Jamie Spencer ride in the QIPCO British Champions Long Distance Cup. 

Having decided the early pace was not to his liking, Spencer drove his mount to the lead with a mile and a half remaining and kicked clear of his rivals at the top of the Ascot straight. With runner-up Opinion Poll bearing down on him, closely pursued by third-placed Colour Vision and Nehaam, Fame And Glory dug deep for his rider’s urgings and landed the spoils by a length and a quarter.

Fame And Glory, victorious over Opinion Poll in the Group One Gold Cup over a further half-mile at Royal Ascot in June, could well be back at the course for that contest next June.

The Montjeu entire headed to QIPCO British Champions Day with questions to answer after failing to win in two starts since his Gold Cup triumph, most recently when a disappointing fourth in the Group One Irish St Leger over a mile and three quarters at the Curragh in September.

A delighted O’Brien said: “It is very special to win here. Everybody knew that his big, main issue this year was the Ascot Gold Cup here and we trained him very hard for that. He was so courageous and gave it all that day, so in respect to the horse, we had to give him a break and be kind and gentle to him afterwards. We chased him hard for the Gold Cup and you don’t want to do that twice to a horse.

“He had his two lovely runs after but we left a little bit for today. He has so much class and when he needed it to day it was there – Jamie gave him a marvellous ride. It’s great to be back here, it’s a great meeting and it’s great timing.

“He is a horse that had a mile and a quarter class – Group One winner – and he’s a two and a half-mile Gold Cup winner, so stamina is not a bother for him as he showed in the Gold Cup and class isn’t either. Jamie just got him into a rhythm and the rest is history, he gave him a great ride.

“After winning the Gold Cup here, you would imagine that he was on such a level of fitness for that that he probably wasn’t at that Gold Cup level today. We were hoping that he wouldn’t have to be.

“It would be great to come back for the Gold Cup in June. That’s a decision for the boys, Dr Hay and everybody. We are just privileged to be part of the team.”

Part-owner John Magnier, commented: “It was a good training performance by Aidan. When you train a horse to win a Gold Cup, you have to have them so supremely fit – it takes a lot out of them. He obviously got him back up to that level of fitness today.

“You have got to hand it to Jamie, it was a great ride. There is no better man than him on his day.”

For the full race result, CLICK HERE