Friday, 27 May 2011



Britain has the greatest Flat racing in the world and the QIPCO British Champions Series will showcase the very best of it – 35 races worth almost £13m at 10 outstanding racecourses, climaxing with QIPCO British Champions day at Ascot on 15 October, the richest race day in British history


For horseracing’s speed merchants, the QIPCO British Champions Series Sprint category comprises three races over the minimum distance of 5 furlongs (1,000 metres) - the Betfred Temple Stakes (Haydock, 21 May), King’s Stand Stakes (Royal Ascot, 14 June) and Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes (York, 19 August) and four races over 6 furlongs (1,200 metres) – the Golden Jubilee Stakes (Royal Ascot, 18 June), Darley July Cup (Newmarket, 9 July), Betfred Sprint Cup (Haydock, 3 September) and the finale on QIPCO British Champions Day, the QIPCO British Champions Sprint Stakes (Ascot, 15 October).

There’s nothing quite like the sight of a big field of sprinters, bursting out of the starting stalls and thundering over the turf at full pace in the rush for the winning line. Some horses are clearly bred for sprinting, while the pedigree of others may hold out hope for them being able to stretch their stamina to a mile, generally considered a more prestigious distance in thoroughbred racing. If their stamina fails, they can always make a quick return to sprinting.

QIPCO Sprint Races in this category (S)
1. The Betfred Temple Stakes Haydock Park Saturday May 21    %20stakes-haydock.html
2. The King's Stand Stakes Royal Ascot Tuesday June 14
3. The Golden Jubilee Stakes Royal Ascot Saturday June 18
4. The Darley July Cup Newmarket Saturday July 9
5. The Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes York Friday August 19
6. The Betfred Sprint Cup Haydock Park Saturday September 3
7. The QIPCO British Champions Sprint Stakes Ascot Saturday October 15

QIPCO Mile Races in this catagory (ML) 
TOP CLASS MILERS really matter in thoroughbred racing, very much like 1500 metre runners in athletics. It is as three-year-olds that horses’ abilities are really put to the test – the five Classics are exclusively for that age group – and most of Europe’s best three-year-old colts (fillies can also run, but very rarely do) will contest the QIPCO 2000 Guineas over a mile (1,600 metres, Newmarket, 30 April), the race that launches the QIPCO British Champions Series. It was the highest ranked mile race in the world last year.

Older horses have their first QIPCO British Champions Series Mile race in the JLT Lockinge Stakes (Newbury, 14 May) followed by another at Royal Ascot, the Queen Anne Stakes (14 June). That same day at Royal Ascot there’s a second three-year-olds only mile race, the St James’s Palace Stakes (14 June).

The last three races in the Mile category pitch the three-year-olds against their older rivals in the QIPCO Sussex Stakes (Goodwood, 27 July), the Shadwell Joel Stakes (Newmarket, 23 September) and the big mile championship decider, the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes on QIPCO British Champions Day. With prize money dramatically boosted to £1million this year, it will be the richest mile race ever run in Europe.

QIPCO Mile Races in this category. (Ml)
1. The 2,000 Guineas Stakes  Newmarket  Saturday April 30

2. The JLT Lockinge Stakes Newbury Saturday May 14

3. The Queen Anne Stakes Royal Ascot Tuesday June 14
4. The St James's Palace Stakes Royal Ascot Tuesday June 14
5. The QIPCO Sussex Stakes Goodwood Wednesday July 27
6. The Nayef Joel Stakes Newmarket Friday September 23
7. The Queen Elizabeth II Stakes Sponsored by QIPCO (British Champions Mile)
    Ascot Saturday October 15

WITH RACES RANGING IN DISTANCE  from 1¼ (2,000 metres) to 1½ miles (2,400 metres), the QIPCO British Champions Series Middle Distance category is the most important of all, full of hugely valuable, iconic races. Following the Investec Derby (three-year-olds only) and two races for four-year-olds and up, the generations clash in the final four races.

QIPCO Middle Distance Races in this category (MD)
 1.The Investec Coronation Cup  Epsom Downs Friday June 3
2. The Investec Derby Epsom Downs Saturday June 4
3. The Prince of Wales's Stakes Royal Ascot Wednesday June 15
4. The Coral-Eclipse Stakes Sandown Saturday July 2
5. The King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes Ascot Saturday July 23
6. The Juddmonte International Stakes York  Wednesday August 17
7. The QIPCO Champion Stakes (British Champions Middle Distance)
    Ascot Saturday October 15

IN THE QIPCO British Champions Series Long Distance category come the stamina-sapping races for horses that can stay the trip – the stayers. Races range in distance from 1¾ miles (2,800 metres) to the 2½ miles (4,000 metres) of the Gold Cup at Royal Ascot. The Ladbrokes St Leger is the one three-year-old only race that falls in this category.

QIPCO Long Distance Races in this category (LD)
1. The Emerates Airline Yorkshire Cup Friday May 13
2. The Investec Derby Epsom Downs Saturday June 04
3.  The Prince of Wales's Stakes Royal Ascot Wednesday June 15
4. The Gold Cup Royal Ascot Thursday June 16
5. The Goodwood Cup Goodwood Thursday July 28
6. The Doncaster Cup Doncaster Friday September 9
7. The St Leger Doncaster Saturday September 10
8. The Qipco British Champions Long Distance Cup Ascot October 15

THE VERY BEST FILLIES AND MARES  may sometimes take on their physically stronger male counterparts at the top level of racing, but they also have their own Group 1 races ranging from a mile (1,600 metres) to 1½ miles (2,400 metres) so that they can prove their ability against their own sex.

QIPCO Races in this category Fillies and Mares (FM)
1. The QIPCO 1000 Guineas Stakes Newmarket Sunday May 01

2. The Investec Oaks Epsom Downs Friday 03 June
3. The Coronation Stakes Royal Ascot Friday 17 June
4. The Etihad Airways Falmouth Stakes Newmarket Friday July 8
5. The Blue Square Nassau Stakes Goodwood Saturday July 30
6. The Darley Yorkshire Oaks York Thursday August 18
7. The QIPCO British Champions Fillies & Mares Stakes Ascot Saturday October 15


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