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Dettori and Stradivarius star in Gold Cup repeat

20 Jun 2019

Super stayer is the highlight on day jockey revived memories of his Magnificent Seven.

Stradivarius and Dettori win a second Gold Cup at Royal Ascot. Pic Steve Davies/

Super stayer Stradivarius cemented his place among the staying greats by becoming the first horse since Yeats to win back-to-back renewals of the Gold Cup at Royal Ascot.

The five-year-old son of Sea The Stars met trouble in the home straight as he was hemmed in behind a wall of horses in the £500,000 Group 1.

However, once the gap opened, Stradivarius showed his brave and battling qualities under to forge ahead inside the final furlong and held on gamely to win by a length from 7/2 shot Dee Ex Bee, trained by Mark Johnston, in second.

Master Of Reality was a nose further back in third, with Cross Counter another three-quarters-of-a-length back in fourth.

It was Stradivarius’ eighth win in a QIPCO British Champions Series race. He trails the mighty Frankel by just one.

To add to the excitement of the 70,000 crowd, Dettori had also won the previous three races on the card – reviving memories of his Magnificent Seven in 1996.

The 48-year-old was riding the winner of the Gold Cup for a seventh time said: “Stradivarius is an amazing horse – his heart is bigger than his body. He does not know how to lose. All I have to do is get him amongst other horses and he does the rest – what a horse.

“For a stayer, this lad has everything. He loves getting into a fight and he is a brilliant horse to ride.

“Everyone loves him, including me. It is fantastic for the stable, Bjorn Nielsen (owner/breeder) and everybody else involved. I am so thrilled.

“I get nervous [riding this horse] because the people care about him so much and it is a great story for Bjorn and the stable. Every time he runs, he delivers, he is unbelievable.”

Winning trainer John Gosden said: “Frankie is like a player who gets to the final of Wimbledon and then raises it to another level. He rode a beautiful race.

“[On the home turn] Stradivarius was held in by Capri and then he saw the light and Frankie managed to wriggle through. It was noted in commentary that he was in a rather tricky position, but he did the clever thing because he was drawn two and decided to save ground all the way and wait for a gap. It was a long wait, but the horse is very classy.”

He added: “There have been some great stayers; Le Moss, Sagaro, who Francois Boutin brought over three times, Yeats as well. They are super, wonderful horses and great for the racing public because people get to know them.

“This little guy with his white socks and white face looks like the Milky Bar Kid should be riding him rather than a jockey, but he is remarkable athlete and a charming horse to be around. He has a beautiful mind on him.”