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The Juddmonte International Stakes

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Ghaiyyath
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History

The Juddmonte International Stakes, the last middle-distance QIPCO British Champions Series race before the QIPCO Champion Stakes provides the glittering climax to the category on QIPCO British Champions Day, is a race with a short but glorious history.

The event, run at York over 1 miles, 2 furlongs and 88 yards (2,090 metres), first appeared in 1972. But what an appearance! American-bred Roberto, a Derby winner and named after baseball star Roberto Clemente, became the first – and last – horse to beat Brigadier Gerard.

There have been other notable highlights in this Group 1 race for three-year-olds or older – Troy, the 1979 Derby winner, Commanche Run, the 1984 St Leger winner, two-time winner Halling and Giant’s Causeway, rated Europe’s top horse in 2000.

And then, of course, there was Sea The Stars, who took the race in 2009 – the same year he won an incredible six Group 1 races within six months, including the 2000 Guineas, Investec Derby and Prix de L’Arc de Triomphe.

Frankel captured the race in 2012 as he recorded his 13th success from as many starts with a seven-length demolition of his rivals. Derby winner Australia, won it two years later, while Roaring Lion won in 2018 en route to being named Cartier Horse of the Year.

If you’re looking for the best quiz question concerning the Juddmonte International Stakes, then try this one – what is the family name of the jockey who has entered the winner’s enclosure six times? Answer – Dettori, with six wins (although only the last five of those went to Frankie. The first went to his father Gianfranco in 1976. That would have been a tad early for Frankie, who was five years old at the time).

Current leading jockey: Frankie Dettori, 5 wins (1996-7, 2001, 2004, 2007)
Current leading trainer: Sir Michael Stoute, 6 wins (1986, 1993-4, 1997, 2006, 2017), Aidan O’Brien 6 wins (2000, 2008, 2010, 2013, 2014, 2019)

Previous winners

Year Horse Jockey Trainer Owner Prize money

Entries

Going/Track

Weather

No/Draw Horse/Jockey Age Form/Type BHA Rating Weight Trainer Odds

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Ghaiyyath the Goliath completes Group 1 hat-trick in the Juddmonte International

It was a case of different Group 1, same Ghaiyyath, as the Godolphin star never saw a rival from the first furlong until the last in the Juddmonte International.

Ghaiyyath was simply relentless from start to finish setting a high-tempo gallop from the very beginning. A tactic which no horse has been able to live with so far this season and it proved exactly the same in the feature on day one at York’s Ebor Festival.

The race was packed full of Group 1 talent including QIPCO Champion Stakes heroine Magical, QIPCO 2000 Guineas hero Kameko and Prince of Wales winner Lord North. Predictably Ghaiyyath was allowed to assume the early lead, with Magical following and the remaining three swapping places in behind during the opening exchanges.

The straight came quick enough, such was the gallop set by Ghaiyyath, and it was around three furlongs out that the warning signs began to flash, as Magical looked flat-to-the-boards very quickly. It wasn’t long before the others followed, with Kameko and Lord North unable to make any impression heading into the final furlong.

William Buick then turned the screw on the favourite and within a few strides the race had been convincingly put to bed.

To her credit Magical picked up again in the closing stages, and while she couldn’t make any impression on the leader, she did grab what at one point looked an unlikely second place.

Results

Position Horse Jockey Trainer Owner
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The Course

The city of York and its racecourse have a long and colourful history, involving – among others - the Vikings, the Romans, Pope John Paul II, highwayman Dick Turpin, and the Princess Royal.

There’s no official record of the Vikings racing horses at York – they apparently preferred sacking and pillaging – but the Romans certainly did, during the reign of Emperor Severus 2,000 years ago. Severus, indeed, breathed his final breath in ‘Eboracum’ – that’s Roman for York. So did Turpin. He was hanged at the Knavesmire racecourse site in 1739. Pope John Paul II enjoyed a friendlier reception, lauded by 200,000 pilgrims at an open-air mass in 1982, while Princess Anne also enjoyed huge support when winning the Queen Mother’s Cup on Insular in 1988.

The North Yorkshire track, voted Racecourse of the Year in 2003, continues to attract the crowds today, with around 350,000 flocking through the gates each year. York comes into its own during the Welcome to Yorkshire Ebor Festival in August, the meeting boasting such races as the Juddmonte International Stakes, part of the QIPCO British Champions Series, and the totesport Ebor Handicap. Lester Piggott won the Ebor Handicap a record five times – the first in 1958 and the last 25 years later, in 1983.

Getting there

Tadcaster Rd York,
York
YO23 1EX

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