Kyprios broke the hearts of spectators as he fought off star stayer Stradivarius to win the Goodwood Cup on Tuesday.
Huge roars greeted Stradivarius’ final-furlong effort as he bravely attempted to close down the Gold Cup winner but he failed by just a neck under Andrea Atzeni, who had picked up the ride after owner Bjorn Neilsen blamed Frankie Dettori for his Royal Ascot defeat.
This time there was no blame being apportioned in the aftermath of the race as Stradivarius was beaten again by a horse who had not been born when he was tearing up this track for his first Goodwood Cup success.
Kyprios is undoubtedly the new staying king and he thrilled owner Paul Smith, a member of Coolmore’s top team, although he admitted that the race may not have gone the way most onlookers would have wanted.
“Unfortunately that’s racing and sometimes you have to spoil the party,” Smith said. “I do appreciate the crowd probably wanted a different winner and Stradivarius has been a fantastic servant. Long may he continue, it was a great race.
“We love the game and we love the pure art of racing horses and trying to beat each other, that’s what we’re in the game for.
“We get a big kick out of this and we’ve had a lot of fun with stayers such as Yeats and Fame And Glory and now this horse has come along, so it gives us a lot of fun.”
Kyprios’ trainer Aidan O’Brien has handled many champions in more than 25 years of training and he knows exactly why his new champion stayer is the king of his division.
Congratulations to Kyprios for defeating Stradivarius in the Goodwood Cup (G1). pic.twitter.com/szbIEZv5yY— Longines WBRR (@worldsbesthorse) July 26, 2022
“He’s a horse who loves a battle,” O’Brien said. “He’s lazy and he won’t get out of first gear unless you want him to. That’s the way he has always been. He saves everything for the track and he’s very professional.
“There’s a lot more to come from him. He loves racing and we’ve had his campaign planned for a long while, so he’s going through them well.
“He has a lot of class, even though he’s been running over two miles, or further in the Gold Cup. We would have had no problem starting him off over a mile and a quarter this season. He has pace but he doesn’t show it unless you really want it.”
Elsewhere on the card, Hong Kong-based owner Marc Chan was just denied another big-race British success when Kinross was beaten just a neck by Sandrine in the Group Two Lennox Stakes (1,400m).
Ridden by Chan’s good friend Dettori, the five-year-old had a lot to do turning for home and was closing with every stride but the line came just too soon for trainer Ralph Beckett.
“We were just a little bit further back than we would have liked. He hit a flat spot and in another stride or two he might have got there, but it wasn’t to be,” Beckett said.
Chan and Beckett are forming a formidable partnership with a host of proven top-class performers and the trainer is delighted with how things are going.
“[Marc’s] had a couple of great years and is having a terrific time of it so we’ll keep going. He’s an easy man to train for and he leaves it all to his team, which makes life very easy,” Beckett said.