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Three iconic winners of Newbury’s Gold Cup

The Gold Cup at Newbury is prestigious, and it has seen a number of iconic horses take to the track in a bid to emerge victorious over the years.

The eyes of the world of horse racing will be on Newbury Racecourse this weekend when the 2023 renewal of the Coral Gold Cup Meeting finally gets underway.

Saturday, 2nd December sees 7 races take place, but most of the attention will be on the standout race of the entire meeting – the Coral Gold Cup – at 14:50 on Saturday afternoon. The most recent winner of this race was Le Milos, ridden by jockey Harry Skelton.

Le Milos and Skelton added themselves to a long list of winners of the Gold Cup at Newbury over the years, with several winners holding iconic status in horse racing. Here, we will look at just a few of the most iconic winners of the Gold Cup, with some coming from as long ago as the 1960s and 1980s or as recently as 2009.

Arkle (1964 & 1965)

We will start with the earliest entry on this list. Arkle holds iconic status in the world of horse racing as one of the best steeplechasers not only of his generation but of all time. After victory in 1964, Arkle went for a second consecutive victory in the Gold Cup at Newbury, where he was able to beat runner-up Freddie by no less than 15 lengths.

Arkle holds the joint record alongside Mandarin and Denman for the most wins in Newbury’s Gold Cup, with two each. Arkle’s Timeform rating was 212 – the highest of any steeplechaser. He would go on to enter the British Steeplechasing Hall of Fame in 1994.

Throughout his career, Arkle’s wins also included the following: 3 Cheltenham Gold Cups (1964, 1965, 1966), 1 King George VI Chase win (1965), 1 Irish Grand National (1964) and 3 Leopardstown Chase titles (1964, 1965, 1966).

Burrough Hill Lad (1984)

We now fast forward to 1984, when the legendary Burrough Hill Lad won that year’s Gold Cup at Newbury Racecourse. It was a dominant display on the day, with the margin of victory being no less than four lengths, with Canny Danny settling for second place at the conclusion of an enthralling race.

Burrough Hill Lad’s jockey that day, John Francome, had a fantastic career. He had wins in the Cheltenham Gold Cup with Midnight Court in 1974, in the Stayers’ Hurdle with Derring Rose in 1981 and in the Champion Hurdle with Sea Pigeon in 1981.

As for Burrough Hill Lad, this horse had a trophy laden career themselves, including, but not limited to, winning the Cheltenham Gold Cup in 1984, the Welsh National in 1983, the Gainsborough Chase 3 times (1984, 1985, 1986) and the King George VI Chase in 1984.

Denman (2007 & 2009)

The final iconic winner that we are going to talk about here is Denman, who won two Gold Cup titles at Newbury Racecourse in a span of 3 years, from 2007 to 2009. In the maiden victory in 2007, Denman destroyed all the competition to win by no less than 11 lengths ahead of Dream Alliance, with Character Building finishing in third.

Denman’s second victory in Newbury’s Gold Cup was two years later in 2009, and this year he emerged with a three and a half length victory over runner-up What A Friend. In doing so, Denman became just the third horse after Arkle and Mandarin (1957, 1961) to win two Gold Cup titles at Newbury.

Denman also won a number of other titles in his career, including the Cheltenham Gold Cup in 2008, the Challow Novices’ Hurdle and the Berkshire Novices’ Chase, which were both won in 2006.

Excitement is building ahead of the 2023 Coral Gold Cup at Newbury Racecourse, which is set to take place on Saturday, 2nd December 2023.

There is no better way to watch world-class horse racing than with an Eventmasters Corporate Hospitality Package. Book now to avoid disappointment.

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