06/16/2011 3:10PM

Royal Ascot: Fame and Glory cruises in Gold Cup


The question was whether Fame and Glory, the most talented horse in the Ascot Gold Cup, could stay the race’s demanding 2 1/2-mile distance. The answer was a resounding yes, as Fame and Glory captured the Group 1 Gold Cup by three lengths under Jamie Spencer. Opinion Poll finished second, Brigantin third, and Manighar fourth.

Fame and Glory raced in mid-pack much of the Gold Cup trip, with Spencer making his decisive move about a quarter-mile from home. Fame and Glory had control of the race a furlong from the finish and was ridden out to a comfortable victory.

Fame and Glory now has won seven of his last eight starts and is 12 for 18 over the course of an excellent career. Second to Sea the Stars in the 2009 Epsom Derby, Fame and Glory has been transformed this season into a top-level stayer, having won his 14-furlong prep for the Gold Cup late last May. But the Gold Cup probably was Fame and Glory’s last marathon race of the season, according to Aidan O’Brien, who trains Fame and Glory for a partnership. The 5-year-old, O’Brien said, will be freshened up and cut back in distance to point for the 1 1/2-mile Prix de l’Arc d’Triomphe in the fall.

Earlier on Thursday’s Royal Ascot program, Bapak Chinta scored a one-length win in the Group 2 Norfolk Stakes for 2-year-old sprinters. The Wesley Ward-trained Everyday Dave led early but faded in the final quarter-mile to finish 11th of 15.

Banimpire won the Group 2 Ribblesdale Stakes for fillies and mares over one mile by beating front-running Field of Miracles by a nose.