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Photo, photo! Series races have kept cameras clicking

31 Aug 2017

We look back at some of the closest finishes in year's exciting Series

Ulysses and Barney Roy lock horns in the Coral-Eclipse – one of three races in this year’s Series won by a nose. Picture:

This year’s QIPCO British Champions Series races have featured some wonderfully close finishes. Below are seven that have had us on the edge of our seats until the very final strides.

August 25: York – Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes

Winner: MARSHA 8-1 (Sir Mark Prescott/Luke Morris)
Category: Sprint. Distance: 5f. Going: good. 11 ran.

Winning Distance: A nose
Lady Aurelia, the 10-11 favourite, showed her customary dash and looked the winner virtually all the way. Indeed, crossing the line, Frankie Dettori, her jockey, was certain she had won – saluting the crowd and placing a finger on his lips. However, it was Marsha, owned by the 10,000 members of the Elite Racing Club, who had triumphed by a whisker.

July 8: Sandown – Coral-Eclipse
Winner: ULYSSES 8-1 (Sir Michael Stoute/Jim Crowley)
Category: Middle Distance. Distance: 1m 2f. Going: good to firm. 9 ran.
Winning Distance: A nose
Ulysses and Barney Roy flashed past the post as one at the end of an incident-packed renewal, many believing the latter’s late thrust had snatched him the verdict. However, the former had clung on by the minimum margin.

August 25: York – The Weatherbys Hamilton Lonsdale Cup Stakes
Winner: MONTALY 16-1 (Andrew Balding/JP McDonald)
Category: Long Distance. Distance: 2m. Going: good. 9 ran. (Group 2)

Winning Distance: A nose
A rousing finale, with Montaly, having his first run in a Champions Series race, getting his head in front right on the line under an exultant PJ McDonald. Montaly touched off Dartmouth, who had won the Yorkshire Cup by a neck at York earlier in the year.

Race 12: June 22: Royal Ascot – Gold Cup

Winner: BIG ORANGE 5-1 (Michael Bell/James Doyle)
Category: Long Distance. Distance: 2m 4f. Going: good to firm. 14 ran.
Winning Distance: A short head
Any shortlist of most exciting Champions Series race of the year would have to include this
epic clash, with front-running Big Orange being closed down late by Order Of St George, who was defending his crown. The print showed the courageous Big Orange had held on.

May 19: York – Betway Yorkshire Cup
Winner: DARTMOUTH 11-4 fav (Sir Michael Stoute/Ryan Moore)
Category: Long Distance. Distance: 1m 5f. Going: soft. 8 ran.
Winning Distance: A neck
The first race in the Long Distance category of this year’s Series could not have been any more exciting with about a length covering the first five home. Dartmouth, owned by Her Majesty The Queen, won at the main expense of Simple Verse – the pair separated by the width of the track. High Jinx was another head further back, with Endless Time another head behind him.

August 2: Goodwood – Qatar Sussex Stakes
Winner: HERE COMES WHEN 20-1 (Andrew Balding/Jim Crowley)
Category: Mile. Distance: Mile. Going: soft. 7 ran.
Winning Distance: A neck
Ribchester was expected to dominate but, after making the running, the 8-13 favourite was unable to put his stamp on the race and it was Here Comes When, a seven-year-old, who took advantage. Ribchester rallied but was still a neck behind at the finish.

June 24: Royal Ascot – Diamond Jubilee Stakes
Winner: THE TIN MAN 9-2 (James Fanshawe/To Queally)
Category: Sprint. Distance: 6f. Going: good to firm. 19 ran.
Winning Distance: A neck
The Tin Man quickened up smartly to edge out Tasleet, with Limato, squeezed by the pair late on, another three quarters of a length behind in third. There was a lengthy stewards’ enquiry into the incident near the end but the result was allowed to stand.