Frankie Dettori wins Gold Cup with Courage Mon Ami

Most successful jockeys in Ascot Gold Cup history

The Ascot Gold Cup is amongst the most prestigious prizes in the sport of horse racing, and there have been a number of jockeys that have been particularly prolific in this race.

With the Cheltenham Festival now over until 2025, the 2024 renewal of the Grand National at Aintree Racecourse is not the only prestigious horse racing event on the horizon. The other is the iconic and famous Royal Ascot, which is set to return to the famous and historic Ascot Racecourse in June 2024.

The event itself will be taking place over the course of five days, from Tuesday, 18th June, to Saturday, 22nd June 2024. The racecourse it takes place at, Ascot Racecourse, brings with it a plethora of illustrious history, with it being founded more than 310 years ago in 1711 by then reigning British Monarch Queen Anne. The first race to take place there was the Her Majesty’s Plate, which took place over three heats, all of which were four miles long.

It was not until 200 years later, in 1911, that the summer race meeting at Ascot became an official Royal meeting – this is when it finally became known as Royal Ascot, as it still is today. Who could forget when in 2013 her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II made history when she became the first reigning British Monarch to win the Ascot Gold Cup when Ryan Moore rode Estimate to victory that year.

The Ascot Gold Cup first took place all the way back in 1807, when Master Jackey won it. Since then, this race has been taking place on an annual basis, except in 1964, when the course was waterlogged. Even both World War One and World War Two in the early 20th Century could not prevent this prestigious race from taking place at Ascot Racecourse.

Although, from 1917 – 1918 and 1941 – 1944, the Ascot Gold Cup was moved to Newmarket Racecourse due to both World War One and World War Two.

Over the years, a plethora of jockeys have enjoyed a tremendous amount of success in the Gold Cup at Ascot, and here we are going to take a look at the five most successful jockeys to have ever taken part in this race.

5 – Gordon Richards, George Fordham & Johnny Murtagh (5 Wins)

We begin this list with Gordon Richards and George Fordham, who both won the Ascot Gold Cup on no less than 5 occasions over the course of their respective careers as jockeys. Starting with George Fordham, who got his first win in this highly prestigious race almost 160 years ago in 1867, when he rode Lecturer to victory.

His second victory came with Mortemer in 1871, before winning his second in as many years with Henry in 1872. Fordham’s penultimate victory in this race came in 1875 in Doncaster, before he emerged victorious one last time in the Ascot Gold Cup after he rode Tristan to victory a few years later in 1883.

Moving on to Gordon Richards, his first win in the Ascot Gold Cup came 51 years after George Fordham’s last, winning with Felicitation in 1934. It was not until 1942 that he won his second with Owen Tudor, but he would go on to win this race three years running, with his third and fourth wins coming with Ujiji in 1943 and Umiddad in 1944. The fifth and final Ascot Gold Cup win of Richards’ career came when he emerged victorious with Aquino 8 years later in 1952.

Finally, Johnny Murtagh has also won five Gold Cup wins at Ascot. His first came with Enzeli in 1999, before winning it two years running in 2001 and 2002, both with him onboard Royal Rebel. He then repeated the feat of two wins in two years when he won his fourth and fifth Royal Ascot Gold Cups with Yeats, the most successful horse in this race, in 2008 and 2009.

4 – Jem Robinson (6 Wins)

Next up on this list is Jem Robinson, who went one better than George Fordham, Gordon Richards and Johnny Murtagh in this race over the course of his career, winning it on 6 occasions in total. Robinson’s inaugural win in this race took place in 1830 when he was victorious riding Lucetta before going on to win a second and third in a row with Cetus and Camarine in 1831 and 1832, respectively.

Then, after a three year gap, Jem won it for a fourth time with Glencoe in 1835. The penultimate win in the Ascot Gold Cup for Robinson came with Caravan in 1839 before winning this race for the final time in his jockey career in 1843 with Ralph.

3 – Tom Cannon (7 Wins)

Now, we shall move on to the next Jockey on this list: Tom Cannon. Cannon certainly tasted a plethora of success in the Gold Cup at Royal Ascot over the years of his career, with a total of 7 wins. He opened his Ascot Gold Cup account with Blue Gown in 1868 before waiting 19 years for his second win, which came with Petrarch in 1877.

Win three arrived just two years later, in 1879, with Isonomy, with whom he also won his fourth Gold Cup in 1880. He then won it in both of the years that followed, winning it with Robert The Devil in 1881 and Foxhall in 1882. Tom Cannon’s seventh and final win in the Gold Cup at Ascot came when he emerged victorious with Althorp a few years later, in 1886.

2 – Frankie Dettori (9 Wins)

We now move on to the top two on this list, and we now move on to Frankie Dettori in second place. The Italian Jockey has been one of the leading jockeys in the sport of horse racing in recent times, and over the course of his highly illustrious career, he has won the Ascot Gold Cup a total of 9 times.

His first win came in 1992 with Drum Taps, before he won it with the same horse just a year later in 1993. Dettori then went on to win the 1998 Ascot Gold Cup on board Kayf Tara before winning the race again in 2004 with Papineau. Win five came 8 years later with Colour Vision in 2012 before winning the Gold Cup three years in a row, all with Stradivarius in 2018, 2019 and 2020. Dettori then went on to win the most recent running of the Royal Ascot Gold Cup back in June 2023.

1 – Lester Piggott (11 Wins)

The final name on this list is the legendary Jockey Lester Piggott, who currently holds the honour of having the record number of Ascot Gold Cup wins with no less than 11 over the course of his highly illustrious career. Pigott’s maiden win in this famous race came back in 1957 with Zarathusstra, before emerging victorious once again, this time onboard Gladness a year later in 1958.

A third win came in 1961 with Pandofell before win number four came about when he won with Twilight Alley a couple of years later in 1963. Another two years after that, Ascot Gold Cup win number five came when he won with Fighting Charlie in 1965. Piggott would win all three Gold Cups at Royal Ascot in a row whilst on board Sagaro in 1975, 1976 and 1977. He then won with Le Moss in 1979 before his final two Royal Ascot Gold Cup wins, which both came with Ardross in 1981 and 1982.

With the 2024 renewal of the iconic and illustrious Royal Ascot underway in a matter of weeks at Ascot Racecourse, excitement and anticipation are certainly on the rise amongst horse racing fans.

There is no better way to experience world-class horse racing at the 2024 Royal Ascot than with an Eventmasters VIP Hospitality Package. Book now to avoid disappointment!

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