The second Classic of the British Flat season, the QIPCO 1000 Guineas is open to three-year-old fillies. It’s run on the Rowley Mile course at Newmarket, over one mile (1,600 metres) in late April or early May.
Trial races are run in mid-April, but many contenders head for the 1000 Guineas without a run since the previous autumn.
The QIPCO 1000 Guineas dates back to 1814 – it celebrated its 200th running in 2013 – five years after the introduction of the 2000 Guineas, an equivalent race open to both colts and fillies.
The 2010 running was won by French jockey Stéphane Pasquier on Special Duty following a stewards’ inquiry which resulted in the disqualification of first-past-the-post Jacqueline Quest who was deemed to have bumped into her rival. Extraordinarily, Special Duty won the French 1000 Guineas later in the same month – also after a stewards’ inquiry.
In 2011 Frankie Dettori and Godolphin teamed up for their third triumph in the race thanks to Blue Bunting, who came from nearly last to first to win going away and lead Frankie to one of his trademark flying dismounts in the winner’s enclosure afterwards.
That victory put Dettori level with Richard Hills on three victories in the race, just behind Kieren Fallon on four.
Record-breaking trainer Aidan O’Brien enjoyed a fourth win in the race via Winter in 2017, but still trails the late Sir Henry Cecil by two wins.
The biggest surprise came in 2018, when Billesdon Brook won at 66-1. The smallest surprise? Tontine’s victory in 1825, when she was the only runner.
Current leading jockey: Ryan Moore, 3 wins (2012, 2015, 2016)
Current leading trainer: Aidan O’Brien, 4 wins (2005, 2012, 2016, 2017)