Loading content…

The Darley July Cup

3.35pm Newmarket

  • Distance 6f
  • Class 1
  • Group 1
  • Prize money £500,000


If you want a tip as to which horse will end the season as Europe’s top sprinter, then look no further than Newmarket’s Darley July Cup.

One of the most valuable and prestigious sprints of the British Flat racing calendar, the July Cup has a record of attracting the best contenders.

Jockey Hayley Turner had cause to celebrate in 2011 as she became the second woman to win a British Group 1 race on board the David Simcock-trained Dream Ahead. Run over six furlongs (1,200 metres) of the July Course, the Darley July Cup is open to three-year-olds or older while in 2013 Lethal Force smashed the track record with a pillar-to-post victory. In 2014 Slade Power followed in Lethal Force’s footsteps, winning both the Diamond Jubilee and the Darley July Cup.

2020 saw a memorable victory for connections of Oxted. Not only was the victory a first Group 1 win for trainer Roger Teal, but it was also a first Group 1 for Cieren Fallon Jr – A race his father, Kieren Fallon, never managed to win in his illustrious career.

Queen Victoria may have been hard to amuse but the first two runnings of this race, in 1876-7, must have raised a faint smile. Both were won by Springfield, who was bred by the monarch.

Current leading jockeys: John Egan, Paul Hanagan and Adam Kirby – all 2 wins
Current leading trainers:
Aidan O’Brien, 5 wins (1999, 2001, 2010, 2018, 2019).

Previous winners

Year Horse Jockey Trainer Owner Prize money




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


Starman shoots to Darley July Cup victory under Tom Marquand

On paper in the days leading in to the fixture, the Darley July Cup looked to be a thrilling race. It did not disappoint with Starman running out a hugely impressive winner under Tom Marquand.

The race presented the first opportunity for younger and older sprinters to clash this season. The market beforehand implied there were several from both age groups in with a live chance.

Starman and Dragon Symbol fought it out for favouritism in the final minutes, with the latter coming out on top and being sent off the 7/2 favourite.

The field split into three groups from the off. Art Power headed a far-side group, Glen Shiel under Hollie Doyle leading the middle group and a plethora of rivals fought for the stand-side lead.

Starman, the eventual winner received lots of cover in the stand-side group early on. Tom Marquand began to squeeze his mount inside the three furlong marker to make his move. The response wasn’t instant, but once Marquand had got his ride moving, the turn of foot was deadly. Starman battled through the group as the runners stretched across the track, and ran away from the field in the final ½ furlong.

Starman cuts through the field to land the Darley July Cup

Previous Series winners Oxted and Glen Shiel were among the chasing pack close in behind, as well as Dragon Symbol and Oisin Murphy who eventually finished second having lost the Commonwealth Cup in the Steward’s Room last time out at Royal Ascot.

After the race, Tom Marquand said “They had me in a bit of trouble at the three furlong pole, you run downhill and with these top class sprinters it got a bit tight.”

“My god, he had a turn of foot though when he hit that rising ground. That last 100 metres is the one that counts. It’s fantastic for Ed Walker and the team to have found a top class horse.”

“It is so well deserved, and this horse is an absolute star.”


Position Horse Jockey Trainer Owner
{position} {ownerName}

The Course

Newmarket is known as the “Home of Racing” - and who would argue?

  • Course plan
  • Course Intro

Certainly not James I, the first notable fan who built a palace in the Suffolk town in 1605. Racing fanatic Charles II followed suit, establishing the first horse race ever run in Britain under written rules. The Rowley Mile Racecourse, indeed – one of two at Newmarket, the other being the July Course – is named after his favourite hack, Old Rowley.

Today, Newmarket is horseracing’s centre of the Universe, with 2,500 thoroughbreds in training, shared by 75 licensed trainers and spread out over 2,800 acres of training grounds. Oh, and there’s also enough space left over for 65 stud farms, including the National Stud, and Tattersalls, the biggest horse sales company in Europe.

The QIPCO 2000 Guineas, one of Britain’s five Classics, is hosted by Newmarket. The race was first run in 1809. The venue also stages the QIPCO 1000 Guineas.

Getting there

Newmarket Racecourses,
Westfield House,
The Links,

View on Google Maps

View fixtures