The History of the Queen Anne Stakes

Good Evening!

Welcome to a Monday evening blog post here at zoelouisesmithx.com. With Royal Ascot starting tomorrow I have a week of posts coming up. Each day of this week I will be posting a history post for a randomly picked Group 1 race the following day, ending the week on Saturday morning with a very interesting post about a record breaking jockey! So without further ado, let’s get into today’s post.


The Queen Anne Stakes is a Group 1 flat race which started in 1840 and is ran at Ascot Racecourse over 1 mile, it takes place in June of each year and is open to horses who are aged four or older. In 2020 the race was worth £245,925 with the winner receiving £148,000.

When the race was established in 1840, it was called the Trial Stakes and was originally open to horses aged three or older. It was in 1930 that this changed, when it was renamed in honour of Queen Anne who was the founder of Ascot Racecourse. In 1971 it was classed as a Group 3 race and in 1984 it was promoted to a Group 2 race. It was only in 2003 that it was given Group 1 status and the minimum age was raised to four years old or older.


So let’s take a look at some early winners in the race, starting with the first ever winner, Flambeau, who won in 1840 and again the following year in 1841. Toastmaster was the next horse to win the race multiple times when winning in 1885 and 1886, with Worcester following in his footsteps when winning in 1895 and 1896 and Dean Swift winning the race in 1906 and 1907.

Moving into more recent times, you have Lester Piggott winning the race in 1972 on board four year old Sparkler for trainer Robert Armstrong and owner Maria Mehl-Mulhens. In 1974 the first 3 past the post, Confusion, Gloss and Royal Prerogative were all disqualified meaning the fourth past the post four year old Brook won the race for jockey Brian Taylor, trainer Mario Benetti and owner Carlo Vittadini. In 1975 three year old Imperial March won the race under Gianfranco Dettori for Vincent O’Brien and Walter Mullady. However jockey Brian Taylor would return to the winners enclosure in 1976 and 1977. In 1996 he won on board six year old Ardoon for trainer Gavin Pritchard-Gordon and owner Frank Feeney and in 1977 he won on board four year old Jellaby for trainer Ryan Price and owner Esa Alkhalifa.

Lester Piggott then dominated the race over the next few years. In 1979 he won on board three year old Baptism for Jeremy Tree and Jock Whitney. In 1981 he won on board four year old Belmont Bay for Henry Cecil and Daniel Wildenstein. In 1982 he won on three year old Mr Fluorocarbon for Henry Cecil and James McAllister. And in 1984 he won on board three year old Trojan Fen for Henry Cecil and Stavros Niarchos.

Moving forward a few years there is then Frankie Dettori winning the race for the first time in 1990 on board four year old Markofdistinction for Luca Cumani and Gerald Leigh. In 1992 Willie Carson won on board four year old Lahib for John Dunlop and Hamdan Al Maktoum before Michael Kinane went on t win multiple times. Firstly in 1993 on board four year old Alflora for Clive Brittain and Circlechart Ltd, again in 1994 on board four year old Barathea for Luca Cumani and Sheikh Mohammed and again in 1996 on board four year old Charnwood Forest for Saeed bin Suroor and Godolphin.

Starting with the 1996 race, Saeed bin Suroor and Godolphin dominated the race for many years. In 1997 they won with four year old Allied Forces with Frankie Dettori riding, again in 1998 with four year old Intikhab with Frankie Dettori riding again and winning again in 1999 with five year old Cape Cross rode by Gary Stevens.

The next three years would be won by trainer Sir Michael Stoute, firstly in 2000 with four year old Klanisi who was rode by Kieren Fallon for HH Aga Khan IV, in 2001 with four year old Medicean who was also rode by Kieren Fallon, this time for Cheveley Park Stud and again in 2002 with four year old No Excuse Needed who was rode by Johnny Murtagh for Maktoum Al Maktoum.

Jumping forward a few years, in 2006 Aidan O’Brien won the race for the first time with four year old Ad Valorem who was rode by Kieren Fallon for Magnier / Ingham.

In 2012 we seen the brilliant Frankel go on to win the race at four years old for Tom Queally, Sir Henry Cecil and Khalid Abdullah. Followed by four year old Declaration of War in 2013 for Joseph and Aidan O’Brien and owners Magnier / Tabor.

The most recent winners include four year old Accidental Agent in 2018 for Charlie Bishop, Eve Johnson Houghton and Gaie Johnson Houghton, six year old Lord Glitters in 2019 for Daniel Tudhope, David O’Meara and Geoff and Sandra Turnbull. With the most recent winner being four year old Circus Maximus in 2020 for Ryan Moore, Aidan O’Brien and Flaxman / Magnier / Tabor / Smith.


Now onto some records. Starting with the most successful horses, all of whom have won the race twice. We have Flambeau who won in 1840 and 1841, Toastmaster who won in 1885 and 1886, Worcester who won in 1895 and 1896 and finally Dean Swift who won in 1906 and 1907.

Onto the leading jockey and we actually see two jockeys with six victories each.

Sir Gordon Richards: Sunderland (1925), Sundry (1927), Coldstream (1931), Fair Trial (1935), Pambidian (1949) and Southborne (1952).

Frankie Dettori: Markofdistinction (1990), Allied Forces (1997), Intikhab (1998), Dubai Destination (2003), Refuse to Bend (2004) and Ramonti (2007)

Next up is the leading trainer in this race and with 7 victories this goes to Saeed bin Suroor who has won with Charnwood Forest (1996), Allied Forces (1997), Intikhab (1998), Cape Cross (1999), Dubai Destination (2003), Refuse to Bend (2004) and Ramonti (2007).

The final record is the leading owner in this race and with 8 wins, this is Godolphin who has won with Charnwood Forest (1996), Allied Forces (1997), Intikhab (1998), Cape Cross (1999), Dubai Destination (2003), Refuse to Bend (2004), Ramonti (2007) and Ribchester (2017).


So, some things to note for this years renewal… (Please note all odds are correct via Ladbrokes at the time of writing this post 7pm on June 13th 2021).

Frankie Dettori is on the current favourite Palace Pier for trainers John and Thady Gosden and owner Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum who is currently 4/11 – Meaning if he wins this years renewal he will become the clear leading jockey of this race with 7 wins.

Two previous winners are entered into this race. 2018 winner Accidental Agent for jockey Charles Bishop, trainer Eve Johnson Houghton and owner Mrs R F Johnson Houghton who is now 7 years old and currently 66/1. And the second being Lord Glitters for jockey Daniel Tudhope, trainer David O’Meara and owners Geoff and Sandra Turnbull who is now 8 years old and is currently 22/1. If either of these horses win, they will join the list of the most successful horses with 2 wins each.


So with all of that being said… Who do you like the look of in this years Royal Ascot opener, the renewal of the Group 1 Queen Anne Stakes? Let me know over on Twitter! I hope you all enjoyed this one and I will see you tomorrow evening at 6pm for ‘The History of the Prince of Wales’s Stakes’.

Six of the Most Prolific Sires in British and Irish Horse Racing

Good Morning!

Welcome to a new post here at zoelouisesmithx.com! Today’s post is a little different for me… Recently I have thoroughly been enjoying learning more about bloodstock, bloodlines and breeding. I am no expert, but I am really enjoying researching and reading into it more so today let’s take a look at the top 6 most prolific sires within British and Irish racing – they are the top 6 according to how many times they have won Champion Sire.


Regulus
Godolphin Arabian x Grey Robinson

First up, in 6th place is a horse called Regulus who won Champion Sire 8 times, in 1754, 1755, 1756, 1757, 1761, 1763, 1765 and 1766. He was bred in England by Lord Chedworth in 1739 out of Grey Robinson and by Godolphin Arabian and after the death of Lord Chedworth he was sold to Mr Martindale.

Regulus won 8 Royal Plated in 1745 and a £50 plate and ended up retiring unbeaten to stud.

Regulus sired horses such as Royal (1749), South (1750) and Fearnought (1755). As well as producing the undefeated Alipes. He also produced a successful broodmare in Spilletta who produced an undefeated champion Eclipse who ran 18 times winning all 18 times and earning 2,149 Guineas. (I speak about Eclipse in more detail right here: https://zoelouisesmithx.com/2021/05/19/ten-undefeated-racehorses/)

Regulus passed away at 26 years old.


St. Simon
Galopin x St Angela

In 5th place being crowned Champion Sire a total of 9 times in 1890, 1891, 1892, 1893, 1894, 1895 1896, 1900 and 1901 we have St. Simon. St. Simon was bred in Great Britain by Prince Gustavus Batthyany in 1881 by Galopin out of St. Angela. He was owned by the Duke of Portland and went into training with Mathew Dawson.

St. Simon finished his racing career undefeated winning 9 out of 9 runs and winning £4,676 in prize money, his wins included an Ascot Gold Cup, Goodwood Cup and Epsom Gold Cup all in 1884.

St. Simon was retired to stud in 1886 at 5 years old and he went on to sire 423 living foals who between them won 571 races and over £500,000 in prize money. Among his foals were 10 English Classic winners who won 17 Classics between them, the 10 Classic winners is the 3rd highest total of all time, only behind Stockwell and Sadler’s Wells who both have 12, however the 17 Classic race wins by his offspring ties him for the all time record with Stockwell.

His Classic winners were:

Memoir (Epsom Oaks & St Leger)
Semolina (1,000 Guineas)
Mrs Butterwick (Epsom Oaks)
Amiable (1,000 Guineas & Epsom Oaks)
Persimmon (Epsom Derby, St Leger, Ascot Gold Cup + Champion Sire four times)
St Fusquin (2,000 Guineas, Eclipse Stakes + Champion Sire twice)
Diamond Jubilee ( Triple Crown Winner, Eclipse Stakes + Argentina Champion Sire four times)
La Roche ( Epsom Oaks)
Winifreda (1,000 Guineas)
La Fleche who was sold for a world record price as a yearling in 1890 and went on to win the Fillies Triple Crown (1,000 Guineas, Epsom Oaks and St Leger) plus the Ascot Gold Cup, Champion Stakes, Cambridgeshire Handicap and a 2nd in the Epsom Derby.

St. Simon died when he was 27 years old on April 2nd 1908 and his skeleton belongs to the British Museum of Natural History.


Sir Peter Teazle
Highflyer x Papillon

In 4th place is Sir Peter Teazle who won Champion Sire 10 times, in 1799, 1800, 1801, 1802, 1804, 1805, 1806, 1807, 1808 and 1809. He was bred in Great Britain in 1784 by Edward Smith-Stanley and the 12th Earl of Derby who both also owned him through his career. He was by Highflyer and out of Papillon.

Sir Peter Teazle had 21 runs in his career, winning 16 times with one of his wins being the Epsom Derby in 1787.

When he was retired from racing, Sir Peter Teazle stood at Derby’s Knowsley Stud in Lancashire where he sired a Doncaster Cup winner, 4 Epsom Derby winners, 2 Epsom Oaks winners, 4 St Leger winners and many more. He produced Walton and Sir Harry who also went on to be crowned as Champion Sire’s – Walton in Britain and Sir Harry in America.

Some of his biggest winners were:

Hermione (1791) who won 21 races including the Oaks in 1794.
Parisot (1793) who won the Oaks in 1796
Ambrosio (1793) who won 18 races, including the St Leger in 1796.
Sir Harry (1795) who won the Derby in 1798 – He was then imported to America for the highest price ever paid for a horse brought there. He went on to be a Leading Sire in America.
Archduke (1796) who won the Derby in 1799.
Ditto (1800) who won the Derby in 1803.
Fyldener (1803) who won the St Leger in 1806.
Paris (1803) who won the Derby in 1806
Paulina (1804) who won 8 races including the St Leger in 1807
Petronius (1805) who won the St Leger in 1808

Sir Peter Teazle passed away aged 27 on August 18th 1811.


Galileo
Sadler’s Wells x Urban Sea

Third on the list is Galileo who won Champion Sire 12 times and is the current reigning Champion Sire. He has won in 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020. Galileo was bred in Ireland by David Tsui and Orpendale in 1998 by Sadler’s Wells out of Urban Sea. He was owned by Sue Magnier and Michael Tabor and went into training with Aidan O’Brien.

Galileo ran 8 times, winning 6 times including the Epsom Derby, Irish Derby and King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes all in 2001.

Galileo retired to stand as a stallion at Coolmore Stud, where originally he would stand at their County Tipperary stud in Ireland for part of the year and then move to their Australian branch in New South Wales for the other half of the year. However since 2012, he has stood exclusively in Ireland. Interesting since 2008 his stud fee has always been privately negotiated, but he is known to be the most expensive stallion in the world with some saying his fee was north of €400,000″ and suggested to be as high as €600,000 in 2018.

In August 2018, Sizzling gave Galileo his 328th European Group race win as a sire, which took him past the record previously held by his own sire Sadler’s Wells. On November 9th 2019 Magic Wand became his 84th individual Group/Grade 1 winner putting him level with Danehill for most such winners sired. After Minding’s victory in the 2016 1,000 Guineas, Galileo became the sire of winners of all 5 British Classics. Also in 2016, in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe he sired the first 3 finishers, Found, Highland Reel and Order of St George. In the 2019 Derby he was the sire, grandsire or great grandsire of 12 out of 13 runners and was the broodmare sire of the 13th.

If I name every horse he has produced we would be here all day, so here are just a few of his big winners: (If you want a more in depth look you can read all about him right here: https://zoelouisesmithx.com/2021/03/12/galileo-what-makes-a-peoples-horse/)

Nightime (2003) who won the Irish 1,000 Guineas
Sixties Icon (2003) who won the St Leger
Celestial Halo (2004) who won the Triumph Hurdle
Soldier of Fortune (2004) who won the Irish Derby and Coronation Cup
Frankel (2008) who won the Dewhurst Stakes, 2,000 Guineas, St James’s Place Stakes, Sussex Stakes Queen Elizabeth II Stakes, Lockinge Stakes, Queen Anne Sakes, International Stakes and Champion Stakes
Treasure Beach (2008) who won the Irish Derby and Secretariat Stakes
Great Heavens (2009) who won the Irish Oaks
Ruler of the World (2010) who won the Epsom Derby
Australia (2011) who won the Epsom Derby, Irish Derby and International Stakes
Order of St George (2012) who won the Irish St Leger x 2 and Ascot Gold Cup
Churchill (2014) who won the National Stakes, Dewhurst Stakes, 2,000 Guineas and Irish 2,000 Guineas
Anthony Van Dyck (2016) who won the Epsom Derby
Love (2017) who won the Moyglare Stud Stakes, 1,000 Guineas, Epsom Oaks and Yorkshire Oaks
Peaceful (2017) who won the Irish 1,000 Guineas
Serpentine (2017) who won the Epsom Derby
Empress Josephine (2018) who won the Irish 1,000 Guineas just last month.

Galileo has also produced sons who have went on to be sires themselves including Teofilo, New Approach, Nathaniel and probably the most famous of them Frankel.

Galileo is currently 23 years old and living at Coolmore Stud in Ireland.


Highflyer
Herod x Rachel

In second place is Highflyer who was Champion Sire 13 times, in 1785, 1786, 1787, 1788, 1789, 1790, 1781, 1792, 1793, 1794, 1795, 1796 and 1798. Highflyer was bred in Great Britain by Sir Charles Bunbury in 1774 by Herod, out of Rachel.

In his racing carer, Highflyer had 14 races and won all 14 times, he was retired to stud undefeated. Sadly the owners of Highflyer had a plan to make them rich and their plan was to breed Highflyer to as many mares as possible to bring in the stud fees. Many criticised them for this and believed they were over-breeding him which later they were proven correct when he died at just 19 years old.

During his stud career, Highflyer produced 469 winners which included 3 Epsom Derby winners, 3 St Leger winners and 1 Epsom Oaks winner.

Some of his big winners were:

Noble (1783) who won the Epsom Derby
Sir Peter Teazle (1784) – Who we looked at above – who went on to win 16 races including the Epsom Derby
Skyscraper (1786) who won the Epsom Derby
Volante (1789) who won the Epsom Oaks
Diamond (1792) who won many races including the 1,000 Guineas

Highflyer sadly passed away at just 19 years old on October 18th in 1793.


Sadler’s Wells
Northern Dancer x Fairy Bridge

Number 1 on the list is Sadler’s Wells who was Champion Sire 14 times, in 1990, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000,2001, 2002, 2003 and 2004. He was also the leading sire in France in 1993, 1994 and 1999.

Sadler’s Wells was foaled on April 11th 1981 by Northern Dancer, out of Fairy Bridge by Breeders at Swettenham Stud in America. He was owned by Robert Sangster and was trained by Vincent O’Brien.

In his racing career Sadler’s Wells had 11 runs winning 6 of them and finishing 2nd in 4 of them. In the 6 wins was the Beresford Stakes in 1983 and the Derrinstown Stud Derby Trial, Irish 2,000 Guineas, Eclipse Staes and Phoenix Champion Stakes in 1984.

In 1985 Sadler’s Wells was syndicated by Coolmore for €800,000 a share with a total value of €32 million. His initial stud fee was around £125,000 with it increasing in 1990 to £150,000.

In 1989 Sadler’s Wells set a world record by having 11 stakes winners in one year and in 1990 his daughter Salsabil won the 1,000 Guineas, Epsom Oaks and Irish Derby which very much helped steer him to his first Champion Sire title. In 2004 when he won his 14th title, this made him another record breaker after breaking Highflyer’s record of 13 titles.

Sadler’s Wells sired 12 English Classic Winners which were:

Salsabil who won the 1,000 Guineas and Oaks
Intrepidity who won the Oaks
Moonshell who won the Oaks
Entrepreneur who won the 2,000 Guineas
King of Kings who won the 2,000 Guineas
Imagine who won the Oaks
Galileo who won the Derby
Milan who won the St Leger
High Chaparral who won the Derby
Brian Boru who won the St Leger
Refuse to Bend who won the 2,000 Guineas
Alexandrova who won the Oaks

In 2001, his daughters held the first 3 positions in the Oaks. Sadler’s Wells also sired 14 Irish Classic winners including in 1999 his sons held the first three positions in the Irish Derby.

In 2001 his stud fee increased to £200,000 with roughly 200 mares each year visiting him which increased his winners rapidly. Briefly he held the all time record for the number of Stakes winners when Roman Saddle became his 177th Stakes winner in July 2001, passing Mr. Prospector’s record of 176 stakes winners.

In 2002, Sadler’s Wells sired his 200th Stakes winner becoming the first stallion to achieve that landmark, however Danehill passed him reaching 300 Stakes winners in 2005, in which Sadler’s Wells achieved in 2008.

In 2011 when Sadler’s Wells passed away he had sired 323 Stakes winners including 73 individual Group/Grade 1 winners on the flat, also producing several National Hunt winners too.

Some of his big winners not yet mentioned are as follows (again we cannot go through every single one as we will be here all day so here are just a few):

Saddlers’ Hall (1988) who won the Coronation Cup
Barathea (1990) who won the Irish 2,000 Guineas and Breeders’ Cup Mile
Pridwell (1990) who won the Aintree Hurdle
Istabraq (1992) who won the Royal Sunalliance Novices’ Hurdle, Irish Champion Hurdle x 4, Champion Hurdle x 3 and Punchestown Champion Hurdle
Ebadiyla (1994) who won the Irish Oaks and Prix Royal Oak
Kayf Tara (1994) who won the Ascot Gold Cup x 2 and Irish St Leger x 2
Galileo (1998) probably one of his best known children who won the Epsom Derby, Irish Derby and King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes as well as going on to be a Champion Sire 12 times (so far)
Gossamer (1999) who won the Irish 1,000 Guineas and Fillies’ Mile
Yesterday (2000) who won the Irish 1,000 Guineas
Percussionist (2001) who won the American Grand National
Yeats (2001) who won the Ascot Gold Cup x 4, Coronation Cup, Irish St Leger and Prix Royal Oak
Alexandrova (2003) who won the Epsom Oaks, Irish Oaks and Yorkshire Oaks
Synchronised (2003) who won the Welsh Grand National, Lexus Chase and Cheltenham Gold Cup

Also interesting to mention, in November 2007 Sadler’s Wells daughter Playful Act out of Magnificient Style wa sold at the Keeneland Breeding Stock Sale for a world record price of $10.5 Million USD.

On May 13th in 2008, Coolmore announced Sadler’s Wells would be retiring from breeding due to declining fertility and on April 26th 2011 he passed away peacefully at home in Ireland at Coolmore Stud.


So there we have it, according to the amount of Champion Sire title’s they hold those are the 6 most prolific sires in the United Kingdom and Ireland over the years. I have found it so interesting to research this kind of stuff recently so I hope you have all enjoyed reading it too! I will see you all on Monday for a full week of posts starting with The History of the Queen Anne Stakes ahead of Tuesday’s renewal!

Eight Interesting Horse Racing Facts You May Not Know

Good Evening!

Welcome to a new post here at zoelouisesmithx.com! Today’s is an interesting one where I look at 8 facts you may or may not know about horse racing, so without further ado, let’s get right into them!


First up, the fastest recorded speed for a thoroughbred racehorse was recorded on May 14th in 2008 at Penn National Racecourse in Pennsylvania. Winning Brew is a mare who was born in 2006 and was put into training with Francis Vitale by owner Ronald Francoeur. At two years old she broke the Guinness World Record for being the fastest racehorse in the world when she covered a two mile distance (402 metres) in 20.57 seconds, which averages 70.76 kilometers per hour which is roughly 43.97 miles per hour.


The biggest racehorse in history is believed to be Holy Roller. The gelding was 18.1 hands high and was estimated to weigh 1,800 pounds (around 660 pounds heavier than average) – he could not be weighed on a scale as he was so big, therefore they could only estimate how much he weighed. His head along weighing in at 110 pounds. His feet were trimmed as short as possible to fit into a size 8 shoe – 3 sizes bigger than a typical racehorse.

However it is important to note that in December of 2020 the owners of a horse called Shinshinto came out to say they believe their horse is the new tallest standing at 18.2 hands – however this is yet to be confirmed.

To put this into perspective, Frankel was considered to be a decent sized horse at 16.1 hands whilst dual Grand National winner Tiger Roll measures 15.2 hands.


It is no secret that in horse racing, jockeys need to be carrying the lowest weight they possibly can. In 1841, what is believed to be the lowest weight in history was made when a jockey known as Kitchener rode in the Chester Cup on a horse called Red Deer where he weighed just 2 stone and 12 pounds. The saddle and bridle etc weighed 1 stone 2 pounds which made the weight up to the 4 stone which the was handicapped. It is believed his regular body weight was 48 pounds – 3 stone and 6 pounds, so he lost 8 pounds for this race.


The slowest recorded time for winning a race was achieved by Never Mind II in 1945 when he finished a two mile race in 11 minutes and 28 seconds. Never Mind II refused at a fence and was abandoned by his jockey, however his jockey heard that all of the other runners in the race had either fallen or been disqualified so therefore he returned to his horse and they finished the race at their own leisure.


One of America’s most famous jockeys George Edward Arcaro – better known as Eddie Arcaro – rode 250 losers before he finally won his first race. He then went on to win another 4,778 races in his career which included each of the races making up the American Triple Crown. He was introduced into the American Thoroughbred horse racing Hall of Fame and has won more American Classic Races in history than any other jockey and is the only jockey in history to have won the American Triple Crown Twice, once in 1941 and again in 1948. He is widely known in America as the greatest jockey in American horse racing.


A jockey called Levi Barlingume raced competitively until he was 80 years old. His career ended in 1932 when he broke his leg during a race – other than this injury he had no plans to retire from the saddle just yet so who knows how old he would’ve went on to be still riding.


The record for the longest living thoroughbred was believed to be a horse called Tango Duke who was an Australian horse who passed away at the age of 42 in 1978, however stud records in Australia do not show any record of a horse being registered with this name – so it is believed he was not a pure thoroughbred and that is why. The official longest living thoroughbred is Prospect Point who was born in Kentucky USA, however ended up in South Carolina. He passed away in 2016 at the age of 38 years old.


The oldest winning National Hunt horse is Sonny Somers who in 1980, won at Lingfield Park at 18 years old, beating 5 and 6 year olds that were in the race. He was trained by Fred Winter and Ben De Hann rode him for his record breaking race.


So there we have it, 8 interesting horse racing facts you may or may not have known. I find these posts so interesting to look into and from the figures whenever I post something like this, so do my readers. I hope you all enjoyed this one and I will see you all Saturday a 11am for a new post!

The History of the Epsom Derby

Good Morning!

Welcome to a new post here at zoelouisesmithx.com! Ahead of today’s renewal of the Cazoo Derby, let’s have a look into the history of the race!


The Epsom Derby Stakes is a Group 1 flat race which is ran at Epsom Downs racecourse and is open to three year old colts and fillies. It is ran over a distance of 1 mile, 4 furlongs and 6 yards and it takes place in late May or early June each year and the first running of the race was in 1780. It is Britain’s richest flat horse race and the most prestigious of the 5 Classic races as well as the middle leg of the Triple Crown, with the 2,000 Guineas before and the St Leger following. In the previous running in 2020 the race was worth £491,850 with the winner getting £283,550.


The first winner of the race in 1780 was a horse called Diomed for jockey Sam Arnull, trainer R. Teasdale and owner Sir Charles Bunbury. Jumping into the 1800’s, Robert Robson who dominated the Epsom Oaks, started to dominate the Epsom Derby winning firstly in 1802 with Tyrant who partnered up with Frank Buckle and owner the 3rd Duke of Grafton, winning again in 1809 with Pope for jockey Tom Goodisson and owner the 3rd Duke of Grafton. In 1810 with Whalebone for Bill Clift and owner the 3rd Duke of Grafton with plenty more victories to follow up to 1823.

In 1828, interestingly there was a deadheat, however Cadland for Jem Robinson, Dixon Boyce and the 5th Duke of Rutland ended up winning in a ‘run off’ against The Colonel.

Skipping forward quite a few years, in 1896, Persimmon won the race for jockey John Watts, trainer Richard Marsh and the Prince of Wales, with another winner for the Prince of Wales in 1900 when Diamond Jubilee won for jockey Herbert Jones and trainer Richard Marsh.

In 1909, Minoru won for jockey Herbert Jones, trainer Richard Marsh and owner King Edward VII.

In 1930, Aga Khan III won with Blenheim with jockey Harry Wragg and trainer Dick Dawson, winning again in 1935 with Bahram for jockey Freddie Fox and trainer Frank Butters and again in 1936 with Mahmoud for jockey Charles Smirke and trainer Fred Butters again. As well as a victory in 1952 with Tulyar for jockey Charles Smirke and trainer Marcus Marsh.

In 1954, Lester Piggott won the race for the first time on Never Say Die for trainer Joseph Lawson and owner Robert Sterling Clark.

In 1970, the very famous Nijinsky won the race for Lester Piggott, Vincent O’Brien and Charles W. Engelhard Jr. Mill Reef in 1971 for Geoff Lewis, Ian Balding and Paul Mellon.

Another notable name is Shergar who won the race in 1981 for Walter Swinburn, (Sir) Michael Stoute and Aga Khan VI. (If you don’t know the story of Shergar you can read all about it right here: https://zoelouisesmithx.com/2020/07/25/what-happened-to-shergar/)

If we now skip forward to the 21st century, we see Galileo win the race in 2001 for Michael Kinane, Aidan O’Brien and Magnier / Tabor. (You can read all about him, his racing career and his career in stud right here: https://zoelouisesmithx.com/2021/03/12/galileo-what-makes-a-peoples-horse/)

Motivator won the race in 2005 for Johnny Murtagh, Michael Bell and the Royal Ascot Racing Club. Authorized in 2007 for Frankie Dettori, Peter Chapple-Hyam and Al Homaizi / Al Sagar. In 2009, Sea The Stars won the race for Michael Kinane, John Oxx and Christopher Tsui. With Camelot winning in 2012 for Joseph and Aidan O’Brien and owners Smith / Magnier / Tabor, followed by Ruler of the World for Ryan Moore, Aidan O’Brien and Magnier / Tabor / Smith and in 2014, Australia for Joseph and Aidan O’Brien and Smith / Magnier / Tabor / Khing.

2015 we seen Golden Horn win the race for Frankie Dettori, John Gosden and Anthony Oppenheimer. And in 2016, the late, great, Pat Smullen won the race on Harzand for Dermot Weld and owner Aga Khan IV.

In 2019 the late Anthony Van Dyck won the race for Seamie Heffernan, Aidan O’Brien and Smith / Magnier / Tabor. And the most recent winner in 2020 which was ran in July due to the Covid 19 pandemic was Serpentine for Emmet McNamara, Aidan O’Brien and Tabor / Smith / Magnier.


Now onto some records within the race!

The fastest winning time was set in 2010 when Workforce won the race in 2 minutes 31.33 seconds.

The longest odds winners were Jeddah in 1898, Signorinetta in 1908 and Aboyeur in 1913 who all won at 100/1.

The shortest odds winner was in 1894 when Ladas won at 2/9.

The widest winning margin was in 1981 when Shergar won by 10 lengths.

The race with the most runners was in 1862 when 34 horses ran.

The race with the fewest runners was in 1794 when only 4 horses ran.


Now onto the leading jockey, trainer and owner!

Firstly the leading jockey who is Lester Piggott who won the race 9 times. Never Say Die in 1954, Crepello in 1957, St Paddy in 1960, Sir Ivor in 1968, Nijinsky in 1970, Roberto in 1972, Empery in 1976, The Minstrel in 1977 and Teenoso in 1983.

The leading trainer is Aidan O’Brien, who to date has won 8 times. Galileo in 2001, High Chaparral in 2002, Camelot in 2012, Ruler of the World in 2013, Australia in 2014, Wings of Eagles in 2017, Anthony Van Dyck in 2019 and Serpentine in 2020.

And the leading owner – including part ownership – like many of these posts I have done are Sue Magnier and Michael Tabor who have won it 9 times. Galileo in 2001, High Chaparral in 2002, Pour Moi in 2011, Camelot in 2012, Ruler of the World in 2013, Australia in 2014, Wings of Eagles in 2017, Anthony Van Dyck in 2019 and Serpentine in 2020.


So there we have it, a little look into the history of the Epsom Derby. Today’s renewal looks to be another brilliant race so I cannot wait to see how it goes! I hope you enjoyed this one and I will see you all on Wednesday evening for a new post and it is a very interesting post – Eight Interesting Horse Racing Facts You May Not Know!

The History of the Epsom Oaks

Good Evening!

Welcome to a new post here at zoelouisesmithx.com! A 2nd midweek post from me must mean there is something happening, so ahead of tomorrow’s renewal of the Group 1 Cazoo Oaks Stakes, let’s have a look at the history of the race!


The Epsom Oaks Stakes is a Group 1 flat race which is ran at Epsom Downs racecourse and is open to three year old fillies. It is ran over a distance of 1 mile, 4 furlongs and 6 yards and it takes place in late May or early June each year and the first running of the race was in 1779. It is the 3rd of Britain’s 5 Classic races and it also serves as the middle leg of the Fillies’ Triple Crown behind the 1,000 Guineas and before the St Leger. In the previous running in 2020 the race was worth £250,000 with the winner getting £141,775.


The first winner of the race was in 1779 and was a horse called Bridget with Dick Goodisson riding for trainer ‘Saunders’ and the owner was the 12th Earl of Derby. Dick Goodisson then won the following two years with Tetotum in 1780 for owner Thomas Douglas (trainer unknown) and in 1781 with Faith for trainer John Pratt and owner the 1st Earl Grosvenor.

The following two years were then won by the same trainer John Pratt both with Sam Chifney riding. In 1782 with Ceres and in 1783 with Maid of the Oaks, both for the 1st Earl Grosvenor.

If we then move into the 1800’s, we see trainer Robert Robson dominate the race for many years, starting in 1802 with Scotia with Frank Buckle riding for owner John Wastell. He then won it again 12 more times between 1804 and 1825.

If we then skip forward quite a few years into the 1900’s we have Aga Khan III winning as an owner in 1932 with Udaipur with jockey Michael Beary and trainer Frank Butters.

In 1942, King George VI had a winner when Sun Chariot won for jockey Gordon Richards and trainer Fred Darling. Followed by his daughter, Queen Elizabeth II having a winner in 1957 with Carrozza who partnered up with Lester Piggott and trainer Noel Murless. Queen Elizabeth II then had another winner in 1977 with Dunfermline who was rode by Willie Carson and trained by Dick Hern.

Aidan O’Brien then had his first winner as a trainer in 1998 when Shahtoush won with Michael Kinane riding for owners Nagle / Magnier.

Into the 21st century we then see winners such as Imagine in 2001 for Michael Kinane, Aidan O’Brien and Nagle / Magnier. Ouija Board in 2004 for Kieren Fallon, Ed Dunlop and the 19th Earl of Derby. Snow Fairy in 2010 for Ryan Moore, Ed Dunlop and Anamoine Ltd. Minding in 2016 for Ryan Moore, Aidan O’Brien and Smith / Magnier / Tabor. Enable in 2017 for Frankie Dettori, John Gosden and Khalid Abdullah. And finally Love in 2020 – which was run in July due to the Covid 19 Pandemic – for Ryan Moore, Aidan O’Brien and Tabor / Smith / Magnier.


So now onto some records within the race!

The fastest winning time was in 2020 when Love won the race 2 minutes 34.06 seconds.

The longest odds winners are Vespa in 1833, Jet Ski Lady in 1991 and Qualify in 2015 who all started the race at 50/1.

The shortest odds winner is Pretty Polly in 1904 who won at 8/100.

The widest winning margin was Sun Princess in 1983 who won by 12 lengths.

The race with the most runners took place in 1848 when 26 horses ran.

The race with the fewest runners took place in 1799 and 1904 when only 4 horses ran each time.


Now onto the leading jockey, trainer and owner.

First things first – the leading jockey is Frank Buckle who won the race 9 times. Nike in 1797, Bellissima in 1798, Bellina in 1799, Scotia in 1802, Theophania in 1803, Meteora in 1805, Neva in 1817, Corinne in 1818 and Zinc in 1823.

The leading trainer is Robert Robson who won the race 13 times. Scotia in 1802, Pelisse in 1804, Meteora in 1805, Briseis in 1807, Morel in 1808, Maid of Orleans in 1809, Music in 1813, Minuet in 1815, Landscape in 1816, Corinne in 1818, Pastille in 1822, Zinc in 1823 and Wings in 1825.

And finally, the leading owner – Including part ownership – like many of these posts I have done, is Susan Magnier who has won it 7 times. Shahtoush in 1998, Imagine in 2001, Alexandrova in 2006, Was in 2012, Minding in 2016, Forever Together in 2018 and Love in 2020.


So there we have it, just some of the history behind the Epsom Oaks, tomorrow’s renewal looks to be a decent one so I cannot wait to watch it. I hope you’ve all enjoyed this one and I will see you all Saturday morning at 11am where I go through the history of the Epsom Derby before the 2021 renewal.

Enable: What Makes a People’s Horse?

Good Evening!

Welcome to a new post here at zoelouisesmithx.com! Today’s post is another post in my What Makes a People’s Horse series and of course we had to look at the Queen that is Enable. After her retirement being confirmed in October 2020, the racing world shown an outpouring of love to her which is proof in itself that she is in fact a people’s horse, so let’s have a look back at her career to see just exactly why the world fell in love with her. Without further ado, let’s get right into it!


Enable was foaled on February 12th 2014 at Juddmonte Farms. She is by Nathaniel out of Concentric. With her Grandsire being Galileo and her Damsire being Sadler’s Wells (Galileo’s father) so all in all – she was destined to be an all time great coming from an incredible bloodline on both sides of her family.

Enable’s owner Khalid Abdullah sent her into training with John Gosden and her first race quickly approached at 2 years old on November 28th 2016 in a Maiden Fillies’ Stakes over 1 mile on the all weather track at Newcastle. She started at 7/2 under Robert Havlin and impressively won on debut by 3 and 3/4 lengths to Gallifrey (8/1) for Richard Kingscote and Lucy Wadham.

Enable then took a 144 day winter break and returned to the track on April 21st 2017, this time heading to Newbury for a Class 3 Stallions Conditions Stakes over 1 mile, 2 furlongs. This time she started at 5/1 with William Buick riding. However she could only manage a 3rd place behind the winner and stable mate for the same owner Shutter Speed at 5/4F for Frankie Dettori and in second place Raheen House (7/2) for Jimmy Fortune and Brian Meehan.

Just a couple of weeks later on May 10th 2017, Enable headed to Chester for a Class 1 Listed Race, the Arkle Finance Cheshire Oaks over 1 mile 3 and 1/3 furlongs. For the first time Frankie Dettori took the ride and 2/1 was their starting price. She ended up winning by 1 and 3/4 lengths to the Evens favourite Alluringly for Ryan Moore and Aidan O’Brien.

The next race for Enable was less than a month later and it was a big one. The Group 1 Investec Oaks at Epsom where under Frankie Dettori she was a 6/1 shot. Coming out of stall 9, she ended up winning quite impressively by 5 lengths to the odds on 8/11 favourite Rhododendron for Ryan Moore and Aidan O’Brien once again.

Just over a month later on July 15th 2007 Enable headed over to Ireland and to the Curragh with her partner Frankie Dettori for the Group 1 Darley Irish Oaks. This time she started as the odds on 2/5 favourite and to nobodies surprise she won by 5 and 1/2 lengths to Rain Goddess (7/1) for Seamie Heffernan and Aidan O’Brien.

Exactly 2 weeks later on July 29th 2017, Enable headed to Ascot for the Group 1 King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes where she started as the 5/4 favourite with her now regular partner Frankie Dettori. Here she won again, this time by 4 and 1/2 lengths to Ulysses (9/1) for Jim Crowley and Sir Michael Stoute.

Next up for Enable would be the Group 1 Darley Yorkshire Oaks at York on August 24th, again starting as the odds on 1/4 favourite under Frankie Dettori. Here she beat her stable mate Coronet (16/1) for Olivier Peslier by 5 lengths.

Enable’s final run in 2017 came on October 1st when she headed over to France and to Chantilly for the Group 1 Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomph. Starting as the 10/11 favourite under Frankie Dettori, she was once again crowned the winner, this time beating Cloth Of Stars (20/1) for Mickael Barzalona and A Fabre by 2 and 1/2 lengths.

We then head into 2018 and in May of that year, it was announced that Enable had suffered a ‘training setback’ and she would not return until August at the earliest. So after a 342 day break, Enable’s much anticipated return finally happened when she headed to Kempton on September 8th for the Group 3 September Stakes. Although she had been off the track for the majority of a year she returned as the 8/15 favourite with her regular partner Frankie Dettori. She ended up winning by 3 and 1/2 lengths to Crystal Ocean (6/4) for David Probert and Sir Michael Stoute.

A month later on October 7th, she headed back to France, this time to Longchamp for the Group 1 Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe. This time as the Evens favourite, again with Frankie Dettori riding, this time winning by just a short neck to Sea Of Class (6/1) for James Doyle and William Haggas.

We then head into November and on the 3rd of the month, Enable headed to America for the first time, this time to Churchill Downs for the Grade 1 Longines Breeders’ Cup Turf. Frankie Dettori travelled with her and they started as the 8/13 favourites where they ended up winning by 3/4 of a length to Magical (13/2) for Ryan Moore and Aidan O’Brien.

Enable then took a 245 day winter break and returned to the track on July 6th 2019 for the Group 1 Coral Eclipse at Sandown. She was the odds on favourite at 4/6 with Frankie Dettori once again taking the ride. Here she ended up beating Magical (11/4) for Ryan Moore and Aidan O’Brien by 3/4 of a length once again, practically re-living her previous race.

Three weeks later on July 27th 2019, Enable headed to Ascot for the Group 1 King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes, this time as the odds on 8/15 favourite again, with her regular partner Frankie Dettori riding. Here she won by just a neck to Crystal Ocean (7/2) for James Doyle and Sir Michael Stoute.

Moving into August, Enable headed to York on the 22nd for the Group 1 Darley Yorkshire Oaks where she was the 1/4 favourite under Frankie Dettori. She beat Magical (4/1) by 2 and 3/4 lengths for Ryan Moore and Aidan O’Brien.

On October 6th 2019, Enable headed back to Longchamp in France for the Group 1 Qatar Prix de l’Arc Triomphe once again. This time she was 1/2 favourite with Frankie Dettori, however she only managed a second place by 1 and 3/4 lengths to the winner Waldgeist (131/10) for Pierre-Charles Boudot and A Fabre.

After a 273 day break, Enable returned to the track on July 5th 2020 this time at Sandown for the Group 1 Coral Eclipse once again. Here she was the Evens favourite under Frankie Dettori, once again she could only manage a second place, this time by 2 and 1/4 lengths behind Ghaiyyath (9/4) for William Buick and Charlie Appleby.

Enable then returned to winning ways on July 25th 2020 when she went to Ascot for the Group 1 King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes as the 4/9 favourite under Frankie Dettori and won by 5 and 1/2 lengths to Sovereign (12/1) for William Buick and Aidan O’Brien.

On September 5th 2020 Enable had her final race in the UK when she headed to Kempton for the Group 3 September Stakes on the all weather surface. She was the 1/14 favourite and Frankie Dettori took the ride. Her final run in the UK would be a victorious one when she won by 7 lengths to Kirstenbosch (33/1) for James Doyle and James Fanshawe.

Enable’s final run came on October 4th 2020 when she headed to Longchamp in France for another go at the Group 1 Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe. The public were aware this quite possibly would be her final run so she was heavily backed into the 9/10 favourite under Frankie Dettori. Unfortunately she would have her worst finish of her career when finishing 6th, however she still got an incredible standing ovation when returning from the race from the whole crowd and everybody watching from home.


On October 12th 2020 it was confirmed that Enable would be retired with trainer John Gosden saying:

Enable has retired happy and sound after an extraordinary career. We all here at Clarehaven Stables have been very fortunate to be with her for the past five years. She’s been a joy to be around.”

https://www.greatbritishracing.com/news/all-hail-the-queen-enable-retires/

With her regular partner Frankie Dettori also saying:

Obviously I shed a tear as I was a bit emotional. She’s done so brilliant for all of us and I love her. I’m never going to forget her. I went to see her this morning. We had a tremendous journey for three and a half, four years. She was the horse that most touched my heart.”

https://www.greatbritishracing.com/news/all-hail-the-queen-enable-retires/

So all in all, Enable finished her racing career with some incredible figures:

1/3111111/111/1112/2116-

Other than her 6th place in her final appearance, Enable never finished outside of the first 3. She had:

19 x runs
15 x 1st
2 x 2nd
1 x 3rd
1 x 6th

Winning over £10.7 million in her career including some major wins and awards along the way. The Cheshire Oaks, Epsom Oaks, Irish Oaks and Yorkshire Oaks in 2017 as well as the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes in 2017, 2019 and 2020, the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe in 2017 and 2018, the September Stakes in 2018 and 2020, the Breeders Cup Turf in 2018, the Yorkshire Oaks again in 2019 and the Eclipse Stakes in 2019. As well as winning the Cartier Champion Three Year Old Filly in 2017, the Cartier Horse of the Year in 2017 and 2019 as well as the Cartier Champion Older Horse in 2018 and 2019.


Enable has now went on to be a broodmare standing at Juddmonte and on March 2nd 2021 it was confirmed by Juddmonte via Twitter that Enable is successfully in foal to Kingman. So therefore her story is far from over and if her foals are anything like her or the family she has came from then they will be a force to be reckoned with and I am very excited to see how the future goes.


All in all, I don’t think I even need to say much, Enable was and is still loved by so many and that shows by the emotion when she had her final run, not only from Frankie, John and those involved with her personally, but also those at home who have just watched her. I think it shows how loved she is by the reaction to her also being in foal, the excitement on social media that her story will be continuing was amazing and I think that speaks for itself. Enable is a true people’s horse and for me she will go down as one of the greatest and I cannot wait to see how well (hopefully) her career as a broodmare goes and how successful her foals will go on to be.

I personally love Enable and I loved being able to have a look back at her career, I hope you all enjoyed reading. I will see you all Saturday morning at 11am for a new post!

Newmarket 1852: Running For Their Lives… Literally

Good Morning!

Welcome to a new post here at zoelouisesmithx.com! Today’s post is another piece in my Horse Racing History series and it’s a fascinating one to say the least! I think this may be a slightly shorter post but it’s one I found interesting and wanted to share, so without further ado, let’s just get right into it!


On a Saturday in October 1852, thousands flocked to Newmarket racecourse for one reason only. The Earl of Glasgow had announced that he intended to run 6 of his horses the next day and had said:

The losers should pay the penalty of death.”

And everybody knew that this was not an idle threat, with a fellow owner George Hodgman recording:

A bad horse in his opinion was only fit to be shot. The Earl of Glasgow knew no such word as ‘hesitation’, his thinning out process by aid of the gun being a common topic of conversation at this period.”

The news of the Earls threat had spread very quickly amongst thousands which meant crowd and crowds of people headed towards the course with a morbid curiosity as to 1) if he kept his word and 2) what horses would be losing their lives.


The first horse to run was a bay filly called Senorita who run in a half mile race and was sent off as the favourite. She ran for her life – literally and ended up winning by one and a half lengths.

The second horse up was a chestnut colt called Knight of the Garter who was taking on Lord Exeter’s Ilex over one and three quarter miles. Luckily, he ended up winning by three quarters of a length.

The next horse was a bay colt called Double Thong, who was spared an expected defeat when his main opponent bolted in the wrong direction when the flag fell.

We then move onto the forth horse a brown colt called Caracara who was 1/3 favourite again a horse called Sackbut who ran in a 1 mile race. Both horses passed the line at the exact same time and everybody held their breathe until the number went up showing that Caracara had in fact won. A cheer of pure relief rang around the track.

We then move onto the fifth horse and the first horse to be partnered with a new jockey. All 4 of the previous horses were partnered with Nat Flatman, but now Tommy Lye took the ride on the 5th horse who was a sister to the previous horse Caracara, however she had not been named. The owner did not believe she deserved a name and he had previously called his horses ‘He Isn’t Worth A Name’ as well as ‘Give Him A Name’. She was relatively unfancied as she was taking on an odds on favourite for Duke of Bedford called Hesperus Across The Flat, however shockingly she beat the odds on favourite.

So now, it was the final horse’s turn to run. Another filly without a name, however the Duke of Bedford declined to start his horse called Ernestine against her, so therefore she did not run and her life was saved.

So in the end, all 6 horses were saved and went on to live another day. Some suspect that the horses had been given a helping hand, however others suspect it was all a cynical publicity stunt set up by the Earl. But truly, nobody knows if he was doing it for publicity or if he would have stuck to his word be it one or more of his horses had lost. And he never really spoke out about the situation after the day had ended either, so to this day, nobody really knows and probably never will.


I honestly found this one so interesting to read into, it’s such a crazy story and we still don’t know the real truth which makes it even crazier. What do you think? Would he have stuck to his word? Was it all a publicity stunt? Or did others help his horses along to win? I love these history posts and from what my figures show so do my audience so I have plenty more planned!

Thank you for reading and I will see you all Wednesday evening at 6pm for a new post!

Sprinter Sacre: What Makes a People’s Horse?

Good Evening!

Welcome to a new post here at zoelouisesmithx.com! Today’s post is a highly requested one, when I asked people to send in some suggestions of ‘people’s horses’ to research, Sprinter Sacre came up 20+ times, with the first person being @Smasher_Smith88 on Twitter so thank you to everyone for the suggestion. I have a spreadsheet where I am continuously adding horses to research and look into as per my Twitter followers so if you want to suggest any horses feel free to send those over so I can add them to my list and attempt to get through them all! So with all of that being said, let’s get right into it!


Sprinter Sacre was foaled on April 23rd in 2006 out of Fatima III by Net in France by Breeder Christophe Masle and was imported to the United Kingdom for owner Caroline Mould to send him into training with Nicky Henderson.

His first race would come just before his 4th birthday on February 20th in 2010 at Ascot where he took part in an Open National Hunt Flat Race (Bumper). He started as the odds on 8/11 favourite and under Barry Geraghty – who would go on to be Sprinter Sacre’s regular jockey for the majority of his career – he won by just a nose to Ruby Walsh on the Paul Nicholls trained horse King Of The Night at 100/30).

There was a 56 day break before Sprinter Sacre returned to the track, this time at Ayr on April 17th 2010 for another National Hunt Flat Race (Bumper) where he started as the favourite once again, this time at 13/8 again under Barry Geraghty, this time winning more comfortably by 4 lengths to Yes Tom (5/1).

Sprinter Sacre then took a 216 day summer holiday before returning to Ascot on November 19th 2010, this time for his first Novices’ Hurdle over 2 miles, 3 and 1/2 furlongs. This time, he would suffer his first defeat of his career, only managing a second place by 1 and 3/4 lengths as the 6/5 favourite under Barry Geraghty behind the 100/30 shot Frascati Park for Nigel Twiston-Davies and Paddy Brennan.

After a quick 78 day break, on February 5th 2011, Sprinter Sacre headed to Ffos Las for his second Novices’ Hurdle, this time as the massively odds on 2/9 favourite under Barry Geraghty he returned to his winning ways, this time winning even more impressively by 10 lengths to Sorcillera (20/1) for John and Rhys Flint.

Just two weeks later on February 19th 2011, Sprinter Sacre returned to Ascot, this time as the 30/100 favourite, again under Barry Geraghty for another Novices’ Hurdle, this time over 1 mile 7 and 1/2 furlongs, where he impressively won by 7 lengths to Polisky (7/2) for Paul Nicholls and Nick Scholfield.

Just under a month later on March 15th 2011, Sprinter Sacre headed to his first Cheltenham Festival. This time under A P McCoy in the Grade One Supreme Novices’ Hurdle as an 11/1 shot, he managed a 3rd place behind the winner, 10/1 shot Al Ferof for Paul Nicholls and Ruby Walsh and stable mate Spirit Son at 5/1 for Nicky Henderson and Barry Geraghty in 2nd.

Sprinter Sacre then took a well deserved 269 day summer break, it was then December 9th 2011 when he returned, this time heading to Doncaster for his first Novices’ Chase over 2 miles 1/2 furlong. This time David Bass took the riding claiming 3. He started as the 2/9 favourite and in his most impressive victory so far, he won by a massive 24 lengths to 6/1 shot Lightening Rod for Michael Easterby and Jake Greenall who claimed 5.

Wasting no time, just a few weeks later Sprinter Sacre returned to the track, this time heading to Kempton on December 27th for a second Novices’ Chase. This time he was 11/10 and regular jockey Barry Geraghty was back on board. Impressively he won by 16 lengths, beating the 4/5 favourite Peddlers Cross for Donald McCain and Jason Maguire.

Sprinter Sacre would be seen again after a 52 day break on February 17th 2012 this time at Newbury in the Grade Two Super Saturday Chase – Registered as the Game Spirit Chase. He was the 2/5 favourite and Barry Geraghty took the ride. He ended up winning by 6 lengths to his stable mate French Opera (16/1) for Andrew Tinkler.

Next up for Sprinter Sacre was a return to the Cheltenham Festival on March 13th, this time for the Grade One Arkle Chase over 2 miles. He was the 8/11 favourite and his regular jockey Barry Geraghty took the ride. Here, he impressively won by 7 lengths to Cue Card (13/2) for Colin and Joe Tizzard.

His season didn’t end there, he instead headed to Aintree on April 14th 2012 for another Grade 1, this time a Novices’ Chase. He was a massively odds on price of 1/7 with Barry Geraghty riding. This time winning by 13 lengths to Toubab (10/1) for Paul Nicholls and Ruby Walsh.

He then took a 238 day break and was not seen again until December 8th 2012, this time for the Grade One Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown. He was, again, the massively odds on favourite of 4/11, again Barry Geraghty riding. This time he impressively won by 15 lengths to Kumbeshwar (25/1) for Alan King and Wayne Hutchinson.

Moving into 2013, Sprinter Sacre headed to Cheltenham on January 26th for the Grade One Victor Chandler Chase – Registered as the Clarence House Steeple Chase. On heavy ground and at 1/5 with Barry Geraghty riding, Sprinter Sacre won by 14 lengths to 50/1 shot Mad Moose for Nigel and Sam Twiston-Davies.

It was then time for his 3rd visit to the Cheltenham Festival, this time for the Grade 1 Queen Mother Champion Chase over 2 miles. He was a very short price again at 1/4 with Barry Geraghty riding again. This time he impressively won once again by 19 lengths to Sizing Europe (6/1) for Henry De Bromhead and A E Lynch.

On April 5th, he then headed back to Aintree for the Grade One Melling Chase, again as the odds on favourite at 1/3 and Barry Geraghty riding, he won again, this time by 4 and 1/2 lengths beating Cue Card again at 7/1 for Colin and Joe Tizzard.

However, this time his season didn’t end at Aintree, Nicky Henderson instead sent Sprinter Sacre and Barry Geraghty over to Ireland for the Punchestown Grade 1 Champion Chase on April 23rd. This time he was again odds on at 1/9 and won again beating Sizing Europe again by 5 and 1/2 lengths for Henry De Bromhead and A E Lynch.

Sprinter Sacre then took a 248 day summer break before heading to Kempton on December 27th 2013 for the Grade Two Desert Orchid Chase, however as the 2/9 favourite, under Barry Geraghty, he got pulled up. After the race the vet said he had an irregular heartbeat. On February 2014, Nicky Henderson announced that Sprinter Sacre would miss the remainder of the season saying he had recovered from his heart problems, however he was not working ‘with his usual brilliance’. (https://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/horseracing/cheltenham-festival/10657004/Sprinter-Sacre-ruled-out-of-Cheltenham-Festival-after-disappointing-Nicky-Henderson-in-work-at-home.html)

It would actually be 386 days later on January 17th 2015 that we would see Sprinter Sacre again, this time at Ascot for the Grade One Clarence House Chase. He was 4/6 favourite and Barry Geraghty took the ride again. This time he finished 2nd by 3 lengths behind Dodging Bullets (7/2) for Paul Nicholls and Noel Fehily. A vet said after the race that he had suffered a low level bleed.

Sprinter Sacre then took a 53 day break before returning to the Cheltenham Festival for a fourth time on March 11th 2015 for the Grade 1 Queen Mother Champion Chase however as the 9/4 favourite, Barry Geraghty pulled him up again. It was reported that after the race he was treated for a back problem.

Just over a month later on April 25th 2015, Sprinter Sacre then headed to Sandown for the Grade 1 AP McCoy Celebration Chase, he was 4/1 and for the first time we seen Nico de Boinville take the ride. However, Sprinter Sacre could only manage a 2nd place, 6 lengths behind the 3/1 favourite Special Tiara for Noel Fehily and Henry De Bromhead.

Sprinter Sacre was then given a 204 day summer break, before he returned to the track on November 15th 2015, this time heading to Cheltenham for the Grade 2 Cheltenham Chase over 2 miles. Here he started as the 15/8 favourite under Nico de Boinville and impressively he returned to winning ways, beating Somersby (5/1) for Brian Hughes and Mick Channon by 14 lengths.

Just over 1 month later on December 27th, Sprinter Sacre headed to Kempton for the Grade 2 Desert Orchid Chase. He started as the odds on 8/11 favourite under Nico de Boinville and once again, he won. This time beating Sire De Grugy (11/4) by 3/4 of a length for Jamie and Gary Moore.

Sprinter Sacre then took an 80 day break before returning to Cheltenham for his 5th Festival on March 16th 2016 for the Grade 1 Queen Mother Champion Chase. He started at 5/1 under Nico de Boinville and to the surprise of many, he actually won, beating the 4/6 favourite Un De Sceaux for Ruby Walsh and Willie Mullins by 3 and 1/2 lengths.

Just one month later, we would see Sprinter Sacre for the final time when he returned to Sandown for the Grade 1 Celebration Chase on April 23rd 2016 where he started the race as the 11/10 favourite under Nico de Boinville and impressively beat Un De Sceaux (5/4) for Paul Townend and Willie Mullins.

Sprinter Sacre took a summer break and was then being prepared for the Tingle Creek Chase, however he sadly sustained a leg tendon injury whilst in training and to the surprise of many, on November 13th 2016 Nicky Henderson announced that he was being retired from racing. He tweeted saying:

He was the horse of an absolute lifetime.”

When interviewed, Nicky Henderson said the following:

If he was seven, you’d say give him a year off and he’d be back. But he’s not seven any more and this is the right thing to do.”

https://www.thesun.ie/sport/horse-racing/6451308/sprinter-sacre-retires-horse-of-a-lifetime-which-won-more-than-1million-has-time-called-on-career/#:~:text=%22HORSE%20of%20a%20lifetime%22%20Sprinter,two%2Dmilers%20of%20all%20time.&text=He%20was%20the%20horse%20of%20an%20absolute%20lifetime.%22

If you look at Spinter Sacre’s racing career, it really is something special!

11/2113/11111/11111/P/2P2/1111/

So if we sum that up, he was pulled up twice however the rest of his career he has never finished outside of the top 3, which is a pretty incredible achievement. So all in all, Sprinter Sacre had:

24 x runs
18 x 1st
3 x 2nd
1 x 3rd
2 x Pulled Up

Winning well over £1.1 million, he was truly a horse of a lifetime for his owner and those involved with him.

Some major wins we can see include the Arkle in 2012, the Tingle Creek in 2012, the Queen Mother Champion Chase in 2013 and 2016, the Melling Chase in 2013, the Desert Orchid Chase in 2015 and so many more. He was an incredible horse, who I remember watching fondly over the years.


I think his figures and the words of Nicky Henderson speak for themselves, he was a true people’s horse.

Thank you for reading and I will see you all Saturday at 11am for a new post!

The History of the Irish 1,000 Guineas

Good Morning!

Welcome to a new post here at zoelouisesmithx.com. A post on a Sunday morning must only mean one thing, something important is happening! Ahead of today’s renewal of the Irish 1,000 Guineas I thought we could have a look back at the history of the race including past winners and some record holders, so with that being said, let’s get right into it!


The Irish 1,000 Guineas is a Group One flat race which takes place at the Curragh in Ireland and is open to three year old fillies. It is ran over 1 mile and takes place in May each year. The first running of the race was 1 year after the Irish 2,000 Guineas and took place in 1922. In 2020, the race was worth €230,000 with the winner collecting €142,500.

Now let’s look into some previous winners o the race, starting with Valoris in 1966 for jockey J. Power, trainer Vincent O’Brien and owner Charles Clore. She went on to produce foals such as Valinsky by Nijinsky who won 3 races including the Geoffrey Freer Stakes as well as Savannah Dancer by Northern Dancer who won 6 races including the Del Mar Oaks.

Let’s then jump to 1986 when Sonic Lady won the race for jockey Walter Swinburn, trainer (Sir) Michael Stoute and owner Sheikh Mohammed who won the race again in 1989 with Ensconse with Ray Cochrane riding for trainer Luca Cumani.

In 1994 jockey Willie Carson won the race on board Mehthaaf for trainer John Dunlop and owner Hamdan Al Maktoum, he then won for the same owner again in 1996 on Matiya this time for trainer Ben Hanbury.

In 1997, the leading trainer in the race Aidan O’Brien had his first victory in the race with Classic Park with jockey Stephen Craine and owner Mrs Seamus Burns. Jamie Spencer then won the race in 1998 on Tarascon for trainer Tommy Stack and owner Jane Rowlinson. In 2001, Imagine won giving leading owner Sue Magnier a first victory in the race with jockey Seamie Heffernan and trainer Aidan O’Brien.

In 2002, Gossamer won the race for jockey Jamie Spencer, trainer Luca Cumani and owner Gerald Leigh. Yesterday won in 2003 for Michael Kinane, Aidan O’Brien and Sue Magnier. Attraction won in 2004 for Kevin Darley, Mark Johnston and the 10th Duke of Roxburghe.

In 2006, the late Pat Smullen won the race on board Nightime for trainer Dermot Weld and owner Marguerite Weld, also winning it in 2010 on Bethrah for Dermot Weld again and owner Hamdan Al Maktoum.

In 2014 we seen Marvellous win for Ryan Moore, Aidan O’Brien and Smith / Tabor / Magnier. Pleascach won in 2016 for jockey Kevin Manning, trainer Jim Bolger and owner Jackie Bolger.

Since 2017, Aidan O’Brien along with owners Tabor / Magnier / Smith have won 3 times with only Jessica Harrington in the middle. In 2017, Ryan Moore won on board Winter, with Colm O’Donoghue winning for Jessica Harrington in 2018 on board Alpha Centauri for owners the Niarchos Family. In 2019, Ryan Moore won again on board Hermosa with Seamie Heffernan winning the June run race in 2020 (Delayed due to COVID 19 pandemic) on board Peaceful.


Now onto the records…

The leading jockey with 7 victories is Morny Wing who won on Lady Violette in 1922, Glenshesk in 1923, Spiral in 1931, Sol Speranza in 1937, Gainsworth in 1940, Panastrid in 1945 and Sea Symphony in 1947.

The leading trainer, which will come as no surprise to anyone at this point is of course Aidan O’Brien with 9 wins. These were Classic Park in 1997, Imagine in 2001, Yesterday in 2003, Halfway To Heaven in 2008, Misty For Me in 2011, Marvellous in 2014, Winter in 2017, Hermosa in 2019 and Peaceful in 2020.

The leading owner (since 1950 – including part ownership) may not surprise anyone again, being Sue Magnier. With 9 winners which are: Imagine in 2001, Yesterday in 2003, Halfway To Heaven in 2008, Again in 2009 Misty For Me in 2011, Marvellous in 2014, Winter in 2017, Hermosa in 2019 and Peaceful in 2020.

This means that Aidan O’Brien trained 8 out of Sue Magnier’s 9 winners and Sue Magnier owned 8 of Aidan O’Brien’s 9 winners. The only winner that Sue Magnier has had which was not trained by Aidan O’Brien was Again in 2009 who was trained by David Wachman. The only winner Aidan O’Brien has had that was not owned or part owned by Sue Magnier was Classic Park in 1997 who was owned by Mrs Seamus Burns.


The Irish 1,000 Guineas usually includes horses who have previously ran in the English version of the race, however only 4 horses have won the English and Irish 1,000 Guineas double. These were: Attraction in 2004, Finsceal Beo in 2007, Winter in 2017 and Hermosa in 2019.


So there we have it, a little look back at the history of the Irish 1,000 Guineas. Who do you like the look of for today’s renewal? Let me know over on Twitter!

I hope you all enjoyed this post and I will see you all on Wednesday evening at 6pm for a new post!

The History of the Irish 2,000 Guineas

Good Morning!

Welcome to a new post here at zoelouisesmithx.com. With the renewal of the Irish 2,000 Guineas taking place today I thought we could have a little look back at the history of the race including some records, so without further ado, let’s just get right into it!


The Irish 2,000 Guineas is a Group One flat race which takes place at the Curragh in Ireland and is open to three year old colts and fillies. It is ran over 1 mile and takes place in May each year. The first running of the race was in 1921, meaning this year will be the 100th year. In 2020 the race was worth €250,000 with the winner collecting €142,500 of that.

So let’s have a look at some of the winners of the race. Firstly let’s jump into the 1970 running of the race, here Decies won the race with Lester Piggott riding for trainer Bernard van Cutsem and owner Nelson Bunker Hunt. In 1972, Ballymore won the race for jockey Christy Roche, trainer Paddy Prendergast and owner Meg Mullion.

Skipping forward to 1984, Sadler’s Wells won the race for jockey George McGrath, trainer Vincent O’Brien and owner Robert Sangster. He then went on to produce horses for the flat and over obstacles, including 4 times Irish Champion Hurdle, 3 times Champion Hurdle and Punchestown Champion Hurdle winner Istabraq, 2 time Ascot Gold Cup and 2 time Irish St Leger winner Kayf Tara, one of the most famous racehorses in the world, Epsom Derby, Irish Derby and King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes winner Galileo who has went on to produce many of the horses we have all known and loved over the years. 4 times Ascot Gold Cup, Coronation Cup, Irish St Leger and Prix Royal Oak winner Yeats, Fillies’ Mile winner Playful Act who holds the world record price of $10.5 million (USD) when sold at the Keeneland Breeding Stock Sale in 2007 and Welsh Grand National, Lexus Chase and Cheltenham Gold Cup winner Synchronised plus many many more.

In 1986, Flash of Steel won the race for jockey Michael Kinane, trainer Dermot Weld and owner Bertram Firestone. In 1994 and 1995, jockey John Reid and trainer Peter Chapple-Hyam had the winners, Turtle Island in 1994 for owner Robert Sangster and Spectrum in 1995 for owner Lord Weinstock.

We then skip to 1997 and the first victory in the race for the leading trainer in the race Aidan O’Brien when he won with Desert King with Christy Roche on board for owner Michael Tabor. The following two year would be won by jockey Olivier Peslier, in 1998 on Desert Prince for trainer David Loder and owners Lucayan Stud and in 1999 on Saffron Walden for Aidan O’Brien and owner Sue Magnier, the leading owner in the race’s first victory.

We then enter the new millennium and in 2000 Frankie Dettori won the race on Bachir for trainer Saeed bin Suroor and owners Godolphin. The following two years were again won by Aidan O’Brien, in 2001 Johnny Murtagh rode Black Minnaloushe to victory for Sue Magnier and in 2002 Michael Kinane rode Rock of Gibraltar to win for Ferguson / Magnier.

In 2005, Dubawi won the race for jockey Frankie Dettori, trainer Saeed bin Suroor and owners Godolphin. He then went on to sire horses such as Dubai World Cup winner Monterosso, Tingle Creek, Clarence House and Queen Mother Chase winner Dodging Bullets, Hong Kong Cup winner Akeed Mofeed, 2,000 Guineas and Lockinge Stakes winner Night of Thunder, King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes, Dubai Sheema Classic and International Stakes winner Postponed, Grand Prix de Paris winner Erupt, Grosser Preis von Baden, Coronation Cup, Eclipse Stakes and International Stakes winner Ghaiyyath, Dewhurst Stakes, Prix Jean Prat and Sussex Stakes winner Too Darn Hot and plenty of others.

If we then skip forward to 2011, for 3 years Joseph O’Brien won the race riding for his dad Aidan O’Brien for owners Magnier / Tabor. In 2011 Roderic O’Connor won the race, with Power winning in 2012 and Magician in 2013.

In 2014, Kingman won the race for jockey James Doyle, trainer John Gosden and owner Khalid Abdullah. Gleneagles in 2015 for jockey Ryan Moore, trainer Aidan O’Brien and owners Magnier / Tabor and the same trio winning again in 2017 with Churchill. The latest running of the race took place in June of 2020 dur to the COVID 19 pandemic, this was won by Siskin for jockey Colin Keane, trainer Ger Lyons and owner Khalid Abdullah.


So who holds the records?

The leading jockeys with 5 wins each are Tommy Burns who won with Soldennis (1921), Soldumeno (1923), Cornfield (1939), Grand Weather (1947) and Beau Sabreur (1948). And Martin Quirke with Salisbury (1929), Glannarg (1930), Museum (1935), Nearchus (1938) and Khosro (1941).

The leading trainer with 11 wins is Aidan O’Brien who has won the race with Desert King in 1997, Saffron Walden in 1999, Black Minnaloushe in 2001, Rock of Gibraltar in 2002, Henrythenavigator in 2008, Mastercraftsman in 2009, Roderic O’Connor in 2011, Power in 2012, Magician in 2013, Gleneagles in 2015 and Churchill in 2017.

The leading owner (since 1950 – Including part ownership) is Sue Magnier with 10 victories, all of which were trained by Aidan O’Brien, these are: Saffron Walden in 1999, Black Minnaloushe in 2001, Rock of Gibraltar in 2002, Henrythenavigator in 2008, Mastercraftsman in 2009, Roderic O’Connor in 2011, Power in 2012, Magician in 2013, Gleneagles in 2015 and Churchill in 2017.

This means, every victory in the race for trainer Aidan O’Brien apart from his first being Desert King in 1997, was for Sue Magnier.


Very few horses have completed the 2,000 Guineas and Irish 2,000 Guineas double, only 9 have ever been successful, the first being Right Tack in 1969 and the most recent horses being Rock of Gibraltar in 2002, Cockney Rebel in 2007, Henrythenavigator in 2008, Gleneagles in 2015 and Churchill in 2017.


So there we have it, a little look back at the history of the Irish 2,000 Guineas. Who do you like the look of for today’s renewal? Let me know over on Twitter!

I hope you enjoyed this post and I will see you all tomorrow at 11am where we look at the history of the Irish 1,000 Guineas ahead of the renewal tomorrow afternoon!