Established in 1807, The Gold Cup (Thursday 4.20) is a Group 1 run over 2 miles 3 furlongs and 210 yards. The race is the highlight of the middle day of the five-day Royal Ascot Meeting, and is often referred to as the Ascot Gold Cup due to the introduction of a variety of other horse races with gold cup in their titles.
A variety of horses have won the race twice including Sagaro, Le Moss, Ardross, Gildoran, Sadeem, Drum Taps, Kayf Tara, and Royal Rebel, whilst Yeats won in on four successive occasions between 2006 and 2009.
Check out our 10-year-trends, runner-by-runner guide, and free tip for the 2019 Gold Cup at Ascot.
Gold Cup 10-Year-Trends
Two 5-year-olds, one 6-year-old, and one 8-year-old have won the Gold Cup in the last 10-years, but 4-year-olds have won six of the last seven editions. Only one of the last 10 winners has been drawn lower than stall-5, with winners coming from as high as stall-13.
Seven of the last eight winners had won their last race, with the others finishing second, third, and sixth. All winners had run their last race between 13 and 92 days prior to Gold Cup success.
Aidan O’Brien has trained four winners in the last decade, whilst Ryan Moore and Frankie Dettori have ridden two winners in that period. Eight winners were returned at 6/1 or lower, with the other two returned at odds of 12/1 and 20/1.
Gold Cup 2019 Runner-By-Runner Guide
Called To The Bar
5-year-old French-trained raider who has won four group races but he could only finish second on his only previous try in Group 1 company. Yet to try further than two-miles, but he could easily stay this trip, though his draw in stall-1 isn’t a positive.
Aidan O’Brien-trained five-year-old that was good enough to win the 2017 St Leger, when he had the high-class Crystal Ocean and Gold Cup favourite Stradivarius behind. However, he didn’t improve as much at four as those two horses and has looked regressive in two starts this season. Ryan Moore rides another of Aidan O’Brien’s runners.
7-year-old who looked at his best in the spring of 2018 when he won the Chester Cup and a group 3, but hasn’t looked as good in two runs since. His trainer did have a winner in a staying contest on day one of Royal Ascot but the soft ground may not be ideal for a horse that’s older than ideal.
Won at the 2017 Royal Ascot Meeting and followed that by becoming the first 3-year-old to win the Goodwood Cup in a long time. Continued his improvement as a four-year-old, winning the 2018 Gold Cup in an unbeaten four-year-old campaign. Won this year’s seasonal debut cosily, and will be hard to beat. But he would prefer quicker ground, even if he’s won on soft.
Amazingly for a 9-year-old, he seemed to be at his best last season when winning the Doncaster Cup and finishing second to Stradivarius on Champion Day at Ascot. However, he would be a surprise winner of the Gold Cup, having been beaten in the last two editions of the Queen Alexandre Stakes at Royal Ascot, but he does like soft ground.
Beat Dee Ex Bee by 4½ lengths in the 2018 Gordon Stakes and went on to win the 2018 Melbourne Cup in the style of top-stayer in the making. He again looked good when winning the Dubai World Cup over two-miles and, though collateral-form through the second horse leaves him with something to find with Stradivarius, he could improve dramatically for today’s extra distance.
Wasn’t too far behind Stradivarius over two-miles on Champions Day last season but he’s been woeful in two starts this season. Possibly in line of pace-making duties, unless connections think that 2½ miles is going to improve him dramatically.
Dee Ex Bee
Classy enough to have finished second in the 2018 Derby, and he’s already had a hard season when beaten by Cross Counter later that season. Has always looked a stayer in the making and has proved that this season with two wins over two-miles, even if the form of those races has been let down by the placed horses. Has won on soft and heavy ground and 2½ miles may just bring out the best in him.
Flag Of Honour
Only a 3-year-old when he finished fourth behind Stradivarius on soft ground over two-miles last year, but it has to be a worry that he faded in the final stages that day. Has run well on all three starts to finishing second to Magical over 10-furlongs this season, but his stamina for today has to be taken on trust.
Master Of Reality
Won a group 3 over 14-furlongs two starts ago but his overall form suggests he needs to improve massively for the step up in trip, to win this.
Not disgraced when finishing close up behind Dee Ex Bee and Crystal Ocean this season but he’s another horse that needs today’s new trip to bring about plenty of improvement for him to get in the winner’s enclosure.
Gold Cup 2019 Summary
Stradivarius has been here and worn the t-shirt and he’s also dominated the stayers’ division for the last two seasons. However, even though he’s beaten plenty of today’s rivals on soft ground, connections have always said he’ll be at his best on decent ground.
That’s why it could be worth taking on Stradivarius with Cross Counter and Dee Ex Bee, two high-class four-year-olds that are proven on soft ground and promise to give the favourite a real test over today’s trip. Even if Stradivarius proves too good, they look the most likely horses to hit frame, and I’m happy to back them both each-way with their stables having already had winners at the Royal Meeting this week.