July Cup

The July Cup is part of the July Festival at Newmarket Racecourse, along with the Falmouth Stakes. It is a sprint race over six furlongs, held on the aptly named July Course. The race is open to three-year-old thoroughbreds, who compete not only for the valuable purse of £400,000 but also for the title of Champion Sprinter in Europe, which is the honour awarded to the winner of the July Cup. It is because of this coveted title that the July Cup is one of the most prestigious events on the British horse racing calendar.

The race was introduced in 1876. The first and second year of its running immediately created the first elements of July Cup History, when the colt Springfield, who was bred in Queen Victoria's Hampton Court Stud, won the 1876 and 1877 events. As if he was setting the tone for the future of the competition, there have been numerous double winners since the July Cup has progressed. However, only one contender has managed to win the July Cup three times; Sunridge raced to victory in 1902,1903 and 1904 - a feat which was never repeated again. As this is a very important race it is no surprise that Lester Piggott, the notorious champion jockey, left his mark on the competition. Piggott won the July Cup an unbelievable ten times between 1957 and 1992.

Recent Winners of the July Cup:

Year Winner Jockey Trainer Time



Johnny Murtagh

Aidan O'Brien



Fleeting Spirit

Tom Queally

Jeremy Noseda



Marchand D'Or

Davy Bonilla

Freddy Head



Sakhee's Secret

Steve Drowne

Hughie Morrison



Les Arcs

John Egan

Tim Pitt



Pastoral Pursuits

John Egan

Hughie Morrison


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