The Weatherbys Hamilton Insurance Lonsdale Cup, staged during the Welcome to Yorkshire Ebor Festival at York and the fourth long-distance event of the QIPCO British Champions Series, is clearly a race on the up.
It began as a relatively modest ‘listed race’ but was promoted to Group 3 status in 1998, then to its current classification of Group 2 in 2004. Today it is run over 2 miles and 88 yards (3,280 metres) and is open to three-year-olds and older horses.
Previous winners include Persian Punch, one of horseracing’s most popular stayers who was still racing aged 10, while Pat Eddery had a great record in the race, riding the winner on five victories. The last of those was on a horse called Celeric, one of three horses to win the race on two occasions (the horse was due to be named Celeriac but the name was mis-spelt on the registration papers).
The 2010 race was won by Frankie Dettori on Opinion Poll and the pair returned 12 months later for another success on the Knavesmire.
In the past two years, Dettori has clicked on the outstanding Stradivarius – each time sealing the Stayers Million offered by Weatherbys Hamilton.
Current leading jockey: Frankie Dettori, 6 wins (2006, 2010, 2011, 2015, 2018, 2019)
Current leading trainer: Mark Johnston, 3 wins (1995, 1997, 2000)