Champion Stakes Betting Tips and Offers
Champion Stakes Preview: Tips, Betting Offers and Odds
The final Group 1 on Ascots outstanding British Champions Day is one of the last major middle distance races of the domestic season, and invariably attracts a stellar line-up. Here we take a look at the best odds and offers surrounding the Champion Stakes and provide our betting tips for the contest.
Now held at Ascot this 1m2f Group 1 event for all runners aged three and older was first run back in 1877. An increase in prize money since the race was incorporated into the Champions Day offering in 2011 now sees the contest offer a whopping £1.3 million in total prize money.
Champions Stakes Tips and Betting Offers, 4:00, 19th October 2019
The Champions Stakes tends to be a race where the cream rises to the top. Cracksman (2018 and 2017) and Alamanzor (2016) were the respective favourites with the bookies ahead of their wins whilst Frankel had no trouble showing his class in the contest back in 2012. We have, however, seen some surprise winners over the years with the likes of Fascinating Rock (10/1 in 2015), Cirrus Des Aigels (12/1 in 2011) and Twice Over (14/1 in 2009) getting the job done. So, which way will this year’s running go?
Magical a Fair Favourite
Magical has not had the sort of easy ride this season that you might expect of a horse of such calibre. Aidan O’Brien’s four-year-old filly spent the first half of her campaign chasing Crystal Ocean and Enable home before she got a much deserved day in the sun with a Group 1 win in the Irish Champion Stakes.
Her attempt to win the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe ended with a fifth place which was actually better than the result alone suggests. She went off hard to chase the pace and was comfortably the best horse of her group but she never really made an impact on the first few home.
Whatever her results look like this season, Magical’s performances show that she very much belongs in the top echelons of flat racing. Her undoubted class is enough for her to go into the Champion Stakes as the bookies’ favourite. The obvious concern is how much of a mark was left on her by her Arc exploits but O’Brien wouldn’t be running her if there was too much of a concern so she is the one the others have to beat.
Who Will Push Stradivarius Hardest?
Deidre is one of the big international hopes on British Champions Day. Japanese racing fans will be very keen to see how she gets on in this prestigious race, especially after the quality of her performance in the Irish Champion Stakes. It really was very hard to fault her performance that day in September. Who knows how close she could have pushed Magical were it not for the traffic that hampered her in the latter stages but that result does set up their rematch very nicely indeed.
You’d have to say that Deidre has a better chance of winning than her odds of 10/1 with bet365 suggest. She is a quality performer on all sorts of different ground all around the world and does not lack class relative even to his calibre of opposition. She won the Group 1 Nassau Stakes at Glorious Goodwood and is a major contender for another win at the highest level.
The battle between Magical (7/4 with Paddy Power) and Deidre (10/1 with bet365) is just one of a number of exciting storylines for the Champion Stakes. It wouldn’t be a surprise if those two were the first pair home though with Magical getting the nod to win outright thanks to her extra experience in these conditions.
Champion Stakes Previous Winners
- 2018 – Cracksman – jockey Frankie Dettori, trainer John Gosden
- 2017 – Cracksman – jockey Frankie Dettori, trainer John Gosden
- 2016 – Almanzor – jockey Christophe Soumillon, trainer Jean-Claude Rouget
- 2015 – Fascinating Rock – jockey Pat Smullen, trainer Dermot Weld
- 2014 – Noble Mission – jockey James Doyle, trainer Jane Cecil
- 2013 – Farhh – jockey Silvestre de Sousa, trainer Saeed bin Suroor
- 2012 – Frankel – jockey Tom Queally, trainer Sir Henry Cecil
- 2011 – Cirrus des Aigles – jockey Christophe Soumillon, trainer Corine Barabde-Barbe
- 2010 – Twice Over – jockey Tom Queally , trainer Sir Henry Cecil
- 2009 – Twice Over – jockey Tom Queally, trainer Sir Henry Cecil
- 2008 – New Approach – jockey Kevin Manning, trainer Jim Bolger
- 2007 – Literato – jockey Christophe Lemaire, trainer Jean-Claude Rouget
- 2006 – Pride – jockey Christophe Lemaire, trainer Alain de Royer-Dupré
Champion Stakes History
Now run at Ascot – where it features as the headline act on British Champions Day – much of this races history actually belongs to Newmarket. First taking place at the headquarters of British flat racing in 1877, the contest only made the switch to Berkshire in 2011.
This has been a top tier event right from the off, with the list of early victors being peppered with Classic winners. As such it wasn’t at all surprising that the event was immediately granted Group 1 status upon the advent of racing classifications in 1971.
From Ormonde and Pretty Polly in the early days, through to Sir Ivor, Brigadier Gerard and Pebbles in the 20th century and New Approach and Frankel in more recent times, this race has continued to churn out star winners with regularity.
Sir Henry Cecil’s Twice Over lived up to his name by claiming the title in both 2009 and 2010. A resounding achievement, but not a unique one as a number of other runners have doubled up over the years, including Fairway (1928 and 1929), Brigadier Gerard (1971 and 1972), Alborada (1998 and 1999) and Cracksman (2017 and 2018).
Just the one horse has won this three times though, namely Tristan who came home in front in 1882, 1883 and 1884. Remarkably Tristan wasn’t alone in the winner’s enclosure on two of those three occasions, as both the 1882 and 1884 races finished in a dead heat.
Going back to the late Sir Henry Cecil, the apple of his eye in his latter years was the best horse he ever trained, Frankel. The all-time great took this in 2012 in the final start of his career and Sir Henry finally lost his battle with cancer less than a year later. Fast forward to 2014 and the winner of this race went by the name of Noble Mission. Being sired by Galileo and out of Kind, the horse was a full brother to Frankel and was trained to victory by Henry’s widow, Jane Cecil.
Cecil managed an impressive total of five wins in this race, but the all-time record belongs to one Alec Taylor, Jr., who recorded eight wins between 1903 and 1925.
Danny Maher was one of the leading jockeys in the era of this races top trainer, and rattled up six wins of his own between 1901 and 1910. This total was later matched by Charlie Elliott but is yet to be beaten.