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Qipco British Champions Day at Ascot is not just an event; it’s an experience. This grand finale to the Flat turf season in Britain draws the eyes of the world. The allure of Ascot resonates through the equestrian community, as it features the crowning of the year’s most accomplished – the champion trainer and champion jockey.
Alongside these titles, end-of-season awards for champion trainer, champion trainer, and the promising champion apprentice are also presented. But the heart of the occasion? The breathtaking sight of top-class horses vying for victory in some of the most prestigious Group 1 races. And this year, a whopping £4.1 million in prize money is up for grabs.
Mark your calendars
So, when does all this action unfold? Qipco British Champions Day is set to light up Ascot on Saturday, October 21, 2023. Beginning at 1:15 p.m., the day promises six top-class races. The event reaches its climax with the concluding Balmoral Handicap at 4.25 pm.
The races that matter
The most anticipated race on the card is the 1m2f Qipco Champion Stakes, scheduled for 3.45 pm. It stands tall amongst four Group 1 events. Close on its heels in terms of excitement are the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes at 3.05 pm, spanning a mile.
The Qipco British Champions Sprint, a thrilling 6f race, kicks off at 1.50 p.m. Not to be missed is the Qipco British Champion Fillies & Mares Stakes at 2.25 pm, covering 1m4f.
These races have seen champions born and legends made. Let’s step back in time for a moment. Last year’s Champion Stakes witnessed the Sir Michael Stoute-trained Bay Bridge, expertly guided by Richard Kingscote, clinch victory by a mere half-length over the celebrated Derby hero Adayar. The renowned Baaeed, despite all its brilliance, settled for the fourth spot.
In the Champions Sprint, Kinross stole the show, helmed by none other than superstar jockey Frankie Dettori. Interestingly, this British Champions Day will be Dettori’s swan song on British soil as he prepares to venture to the US.
The Fillies & Mares Stakes crowned Coronation Cup heroine Emily Upjohn, showcasing her exceptional prowess. The Roger Varian-trained Bayside Boy took top honors in the Queen Elizabeth II.
However, the festivities don’t end there. The Group 2 Long Distance Cup at 1.15 pm, which saw Trueshan clinch the title for three consecutive years, promises more adrenaline-pumping action. And as the day wraps up, all eyes will be on the Balmoral Handicap at 4.25 pm. Last year, the David O’Meara-trained Shelir defied all odds, emerging victorious at 80-1.
Now, coming to the focal point – the prize money. With £4.1 million on the line, each race promises a significant purse. The pinnacle of the day, the Champion Stakes, will see the winner walking away with a hefty share of this pool.
The exact distribution will depend on the number of runners and the specific conditions of each race. However, given the stature and significance of the event, it’s safe to say that the winners will be handsomely rewarded.
Conclusion: Champions Day Ascot 2023 prize
Champions Day Ascot 2023 is more than just a race day; it’s a celebration of skill, speed, and spirit. From the crowning of champions to the nail-biting finishes, every moment is filled with anticipation and excitement.
With a staggering £4.1 million in prize money, the stakes have never been higher. As the champions of tomorrow line up at the starting gates, one thing is certain: history will be made.
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