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Kyprios wins Ascot Gold Cup as Stradivarius hits traffic again

Kyprios joined the list of greats to have won the Ascot Gold Cup as he held off Mojo Star and three-time champion Stradivarius to claim victory for Aidan O’Brien and Ryan Moore.

Having gone a slow pace, there were plenty in with chances turning into the straight as the mare Princess Zoe just about hit the front a furlong out, looking to go one better than 12 months ago.

She was soon headed by Kyprios, but Mojo Star, second in the Derby and St Leger last year, and eventually Stradivarius having had to be switched for a run, threw down their challenge.

In a remarkably similar finish to last year’s race, when John and Thady Gosden’s star stayer lost his title to Subjectivist having been caught behind horses turning in, Frankie Dettori moved his mount wide to get a clear view of the line and stayed on strongly.

But it was not to be, as the 13/8 favourite held on for a famous win by half a length with another three-quarters of a length back to Dettori and Stradivarius, who was bidding to join the O’Brien-trained Yeats as a four-time winner.

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Ascot Gold Cup-winning jockey Ryan Moore believes there could be more to come from Kyprios after victory over Mojo Star and Stradivarius on Thursday.

Winning rider Moore told Sky Sports Racing: “He’s a lovely horse and I was quite confident about him staying the extra distance. He’s from a great family.

“He’s done that despite it being a bit messy and we had to make our challenge out wide.

“He’s a lightly-raced horse so hopefully there’s more to come.

“Aidan had him earmarked for this a year ago so he’s identified the right fella and it all worked out today.”

Earlofthecotswolds leads the Ascot Gold Cup field away from the packed grandstand

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Earlofthecotswolds leads the Ascot Gold Cup field away from the packed grandstand

O’Brien added: “It’s a difficult race to win and get a horse that can go that extra distance. We always thought this horse could be.

“Ryan gave him a marvellous ride and he’s a horse we can really look forward to.

“We always thought he was courageous and Ryan had belief in him. When he really wanted him, the horse answered.

“Hopefully he could do it for some years to come.”

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Jockey Rossa Ryan gave his immediate reaction to Mojo Star’s runner-up effort in the Ascot Gold Cup and says Richard Hannon’s horse could dominate the staying division in years to come.

On runner-up Mojo Star, rider Rossa Ryan told Sky Sports Racing: “He’s run super. He’s the most genuine horse I’ve ever ridden. For his first run of the year against hardened, fit horses – he is only going to improve.

“He’s a different horse this year and definitely better than last year. In good time, he might come and dominate this category.”