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Same again for Stradivarius? Staying star to resume at York

25 Mar 2019

The horse who dominated the Long Distance category of the QIPCO British Champions Series last year will attempt to repeat the dose.

Stradivarius and his delighted connections after landing the Weatherbys Hamilton Lonsdale Cup. Picture: Steven Cargill /

John Gosden will tread a familiar path with Stradivarius this year with the Matchbook Yorkshire Cup nominated as his first port of call.

Stradivarius won the QIPCO British Champions Series contest 12 months ago on his way to landing five wins in the Series and also scooping the  Weatherbys Hamilton Stayers’ Million.

The son of Sea The Stars went on to land the Gold Cup, Qatar Goodwood Cup and the Weatherbys Hamilton Lonsdale Cup back at the Knavesmire in August to scoop the seven-figure bonus. He has the same races on his agenda.

And for good measure he also landed the QIPCO British Champions Long Distance Cup at Ascot on Champions Day.

Stradivarius is not the biggest but five-year-old looked in good shape ahead of his seasonal return by Gosden on Monday at a WH Stayers’ Million event at Clarehaven Stables in Newmarket.

He said: “He is in great order and has just started cantering and building up his preparation, and all being well we go to the Yorkshire Cup. We’ve just been doing the usual canters on Warren Hill. He has had a great winter.

“He has done great. He is not a big horse, but he has thickened out and strengthened.

“He is a grand horse to train. He is most untypical of a stayer in that he is quite a neat horse.”

Looking back at last season, Gosden feels there is one race that stands head and shoulders above all the victories Stradivarius achieved.

He said: “I think the defining moment was the Ascot Gold Cup. He really got down low and dug deep. He (Frankie Dettori) timed it to perfection, particularly going into unknown territory.

“He stayed the two and a half miles last season, which is something you never know if they are going to do until you race over it, as you can’t practice that kind of thing.”