London Gold Cup

If you were watching the racing from Newbury on ITV on Saturday you would probably have heard Ed Chamberlain extol the virtues of the London Gold Cup Handicap and seen the stats regarding the classy horses coming out of the race. It's long been a great pointer to future winners and a race I always pay attention to each Season.

While I was researching my Highway 50 service this year I noticed that it wasn't just top class horses the race throws up but winners of all types of races. So I cleared my diary for the afternoon, reached for my pen and paper, got a can of Red Bull at the ready and went through every runner to have contested the last 8 renewals to see where that research would lead.

2016 - 15 runners

1st Imperial Aviator 2nd Cartago 3rd Southdown Lad

Individual winners: 8 (1 didn't run again) - 57%

Races won: 10

Races Contested: 52

Profit/Loss on the year: +41.25

Plenty of subsequent winners among the field that year with some at big prices.

The winner didn't manage to win in 4 subsequent races but did run in the Group 1 French Derby on his next start. He returned to handicapping at the end of the Season where he managed a couple of places. The 3rd home returned to Newbury on his next start over 1m4f and won at 4/1. The 4th went on to run a great race at Royal Ascot and won at that track later in the Season at 10/1. The tenth home won his next start at Epsom at 25/1. The 11th, 12th, 13th and 15th placed horses all won a race before the end of the Season.

2015 - 13 runners

1st Time Test 2nd Dissolution 3rd Dutch Uncle

Individual winners: 3 (2 didn't run again) - 27%

Races won: 5

Races Contested: 37

Profit/Loss on the year: -8.21

All of the wins from this year came from the top 6 finishers.

The winner won the Tercentenary Stakes at Royal Ascot on his next start and later in the Season won a Group 2 race over 1 mile at Newmarket. The third, fourth and ninth didn't win in their subsequent runs at 3 but all won as 4yo's. The 5th home won next time out at Newmarket then followed up at Royal Ascot at 9/1. The 6th home won at Glorious Goodwood at 11/1. The last home didn't win in his two subsequent 3yo races but was placed both times at big prices.

2014 - 8 runners

1st Cannock Chase 2nd Windshear 3rd Extra Noble

Individual winners: 1 (1 didn't run again) - 14%

Races won: 1

Races Contested: 32

Profit/Loss on the year: -29.25

Only the winner won again but the runner up turned out to be a very useful performer.

The winner won his next start at Royal Ascot in the Tercentenary Stakes but didn't run again that Season. He won the Grade 1 Woodbine International as a 4yo. The runner up was unsuccessful in 5 subsequent 3yo starts but was runner up in three of them including at Royal Ascot and two Group 3's. He was also 4th in the St Leger! The 5th home got beat in his next 4 starts but began his 4yo career by racking up a hat-trick of wins.

2013 - 7 runners

1st High Troja 2nd Hillstar 3rd Spillway

Individual winners: 2 - 28.6%

Races won: 2

Races Contested: 21

Profit/Loss on the year: -5.00

The winner caused a bit of a shock when overturning the odds on favourite, Hillstar, but it was he who had the last laugh when scoring at Royal Ascot in a Group 2 on his next start at 15/2. The 3rd was beaten on his next 4 starts and was then shipped to Australia where he would go on to win a Grade 1 race. The 6th won next time out at Newmarket at 15/2. The last home finished second on his next run in the Britannia Handicap at Royal Ascot at 33/1

2012 - 13 runners

1st Expense Claim 2nd Hajras 3rd Clayton

Individual winners: 5 - (+1 over hurdles) 38.5%

Races won: 7 (+ 4 over hurdles)

Races Contested: 64 (+7 over hurdles)

Profit/Loss on the year: - 24.87 (+4.21 over hurdles)

The runner up won two good handicaps later that Season. The third didn't win as a 3yo but won a race in each of the next 3 seasons. The fourth was another not to win as a 3yo but he did go on to win a Listed race at Goodwood as a 4yo at 25/1. The beaten favourite this year was the ill-fated Thomas Chippendale who won his next two starts including a Group 2 at Royal Ascot (he won again at Royal Ascot the following year). The 8th won another two races as a 3yo on the flat and then a further two went sent over hurdles later that year. The 9th was another to win twice when sent over hurdles later that year. The 10th won on his 6th and last start as a 3yo at 9/1. The 12th won on his 3rd and last start as a 3yo at 7/2.

2011 - 8 runners

1st Al Khazeem 2nd Labarinto 3rd Fulgur

Individual winners: 5 - 62.5%

Races won: 6

Races Contested: 32

Profit/Loss on the year: +0.92

The winner was runner up in Group company on his next 3 starts at 3 but as a 4 and 5yo won 5 consecutive Group races including three Group 1's. The runner up won a handicap at Glorious Goodwood and the third won a handicap at Newmarket's July meeting. The fourth managed two short priced wins in minor handicap company later that Season. The fifth won a handicap next time out by 5 lengths, then ran 3rd in a Group 2 race and would go on to win the Group 1 Hong Kong Vase. The last home won next time out at the Epsom Derby meeting.

2010 - 15 runners

1st Green Moon 2nd Monterosso 3rd Doctor Zhivago

Individual winners: 5 - 33.33%

Races won: 7

Races Contested: 76

Profit/Loss on the year: -49.58

The first two home made up into Group performers and the favourite would win a couple of decent handicaps but the rest were on the whole, pretty rubbish.

The winner followed up in a Listed race at Newmarket but the runner up won his next two starts including a Group 2 at Royal Ascot. He would go on to win the Group 1 Dubai World Cup at Meydan. The favourite finished 7th that year but would win 2 of his other three 3yo starts including a handicap at Glorious Goodwood. The ninth home would go on to win plenty of races including once as a 3yo. The 14th home managed a win later on that Season in an all-weather claimer.

2009 - 12 runners

1st Aqwaal 2nd Decision 3rd Holyrood

Individual winners: 5

Races won: 8

Races Contested: 55

Profit/Loss on the year: +24.90

The runner up came back to form after a disappointing summer to win at the end of the season at 20/1 which was a similar story for the 5th home although he was only 5/2 when scoring in December. The 6th home won next time out at Epsom's Derby meeting at 16/1. The 8th also won next time out. The ninth home ran 11 more times as 3yo winning on four occasions and ended his season running 4th in the Grade 1 Woodbine Stakes.


I think it's fair to say that despite the race being a superb breeding ground for future top class horses the strategy of simply backing all runners from the race blindly will lead you straight to the poor house (-49.84 since 2009). So we need to be a little more selective....

So I tried three criteria to see if that would be any more profitable.

  • First I looked to see what difference it would make if we simply stopped backing them once they had won (Stop At A Winner). It turned out that this was an even quicker way to the poor house.
  • Then I examined the record of backing them purely on their next start (Next Time Out). A definite improvement thanks to a couple of big priced winners at Epsom's Derby Meeting
  • And finally, I simply researched the first 2 horses home plus the favourite if he was beaten (First 2 Home + Fav). Very profitable up until 2013 but not so good since then.

These were the results...































































Which would seem to suggest that if you are going to back every runner from the race then the best time to do it is on their next start but the best system of these used to be simply concentrating on the first two home and any favourite that ran down the field.

But the best way forward is to simply back any runner from the London Gold Cup that turns up at Epsom or Royal Ascot as you would have made a profit in 7 of the last 8 years and backed winners at 15/2, 8/1, 9/1, 16/1 and 25/1....

Epsom Derby Meeting

Royal Ascot




























And as a Bonus, here's the Highway 50 race data for the London Gold Cup as a pointer to Royal Ascot....

This is possibly the best handicap run all year for 3yo's with so many runners going on to win races including at Royal Ascot. It's not just handicap races they do well in either as the last four years have produced two Group 2 and two Group 3 winners at the Royal Meeting....

The 2016 4th Danehill Kodiac finished 5th in the King George V handicap at 33/1. The 2015 winner Time Test won that years Tercentenary Stakes and the 5th home Space Age won the King George V Handicap. The 2014 winner Cannock Chase also won the Tercentenary Stakes while the runner up was second in the King George V Handicap. Hillstar could only manage second in 2013 but won the Group 2 King Edward VII Stakes at 15/2 while last home Tarikhi managed second in the Britannia handicap at 33/1. Rewarded was 4th in 2012 but finished 3rd in the Tercentenary but 5th home Thomas Chippendale went on to win the King Edward VII Stakes. Multiple Group 1 winner Al Khazeem won in 2011 although he had to miss that years Royal Ascot meeting. In 2010 Monterosso was another horse to win the King Edward VII after finishing runner up here. In 2009 the 6th home River Captain was 5th in the Britannia Handicap. The 2008 third Colony won the King George V Handicap. The 2007 winner Zaham was yet another Royal Ascot winner when scoring in the Tercentenary Stakes.

So load up your email race tracker with every runner from this race, pay special attention to the front two and get ready to back some decent winners at the big Festivals over the next couple of months....

Good luck,

1,663 total views, 7 views today

4 thoughts on “London Gold Cup

  • Thank for that Gavin, a absolute fantastic read, the one that caught my eye was the M Johnston runner, he even told you it would prefer further after this race, a very canny ride given, running on with minimum fuss to 3rd place, a winner in the waiting for sure.

    • Thanks William,

      Yes, the Johnston horse is on my list too. I expect we’ll see Time To Study at Epsom or the Musselburgh Handicap I mentioned at the end of my post.
      The way Johnston was talking about the horse it wouldn’t surprise me if he then goes for the Queens Vase at Royal Ascot. That’s an Ascot race Johnston has won a few times in the last decade with similar types so he might be worth keeping an eye on for that.

      Best of luck,

  • Hi Gavin
    Such a thorough and informative piece of work which saves us average punter an enormous amount of work. This was why I knew by signing up to all your services I was getting real value for money!
    Your two year old advices is not doing bad either.
    Many thanks Gav


    • Thanks Rob,

      Your kind comments are most appreciated.
      From the 2yo list I am most looking forward to seeing Initiative run again. A surefire winner in the near future.


Comments are closed.