The 2000 Guineas Stakes is a Group 1 flat race ran over the distance of one mile.
The race is open to both fillies and colts aged three. The race takes place at the home of flat racing, Newmarket Racecourse, on the Rowley Mile course in springtime, typically late April or early May.
The 2,000 Guineas is one of the five English Classics and is the first one of the flat racing year. It is also the first leg of the British Triple Crown, the other two races include in this being The Derby and St Leger.
The race has seen many amazing performances. Recently it has been dominated by trainer Aidan O’Brien, whilst world-famous jockey Frankie Dettori has also enjoyed notable success on the Newmarket turf.
The 2020 winner was Kameko, ridden by Oisin Murphy and trained by Andrew Balding. who beat the previously unbeaten favourite Pinatubo.
Key Trials for the 2000 Guineas Stakes
Aside from the 2-yo-old horse racing season which is hugely informative (often the 2000 Guineas odds start mid-May the year before), key trials include The Craven Stakes and Greenham Stakes. These have previously been good indicators of possible winners. That said quite a few of the horses taking part in this first classic will be having their first outing of that season.
The race itself also acts as a key trial for the Derby, with the last horse to win the double being Camelot in 2012 (and there is an old saying “fourth in Guineas, first in the Derby”) other famous horses to achieve the notable double are Nijinsky, who took the coveted crown in 1970.
Prize money for the English classic stands at £523,750 in (2000 Guineas 2019 prize).
Most Successful Horse
Although the race can only ever be won once (with it being age-restricted), many horses have stood out over the years. Sir Ivor is a name that will stir the memories for the older racegoer and a name all racing historians will know.
The American horse travelled to England and made his three-yo-debut. Ridden by Lester Piggot, the 11/8 favourite accelerated past his main rival Petingo in the closing stages, running out the eventual winner by one and a half lengths. The double was achieved when Sir Ivor took the honours at Epsom Racecourse, winning the Derby. Sir Ivor was put to stud at the end of that season.
Considered to be the greatest flat racehorse of the 20th century, Nijinsky needs little introduction. Unbeaten in his hot two-year-old career, winning all of his five races, his prep run as a three year old was beating Deep Run in the Gladness Stakes at the Curragh. Under the guidance of Lester Piggot, Nijinsky went off the 4/7 in the Guineas. Two furlongs out, Nijinsky took the lead, and without being put under any pressure pulled clear and won by two and a half lengths from Yellow God.
Nijinsky then went on to win both the Derby and St Leger. The first horse to complete the English triple crown for thirty-five years, and a fete no other horse has achieved since.
Previous 2000 Guineas Winners (Last 10 Years)
Who won 2000 Guineas and when? Take a quick look at the most recent roll of honour:
- 2020 – Kameko
- 2019 – Magna Grecia
- 2018 – Saxon Warrior
- 2017 – Churchill
- 2016 – Galileo Gold
- 2015 – Gleneagles
- 2014 – Night of Thunder
- 2013 – Dawn Approach
- 2012 – Camelot
- 2011 – Frankel
- 2010 – Makfi
We have to go back to the eighteen hundreds to find the most successful horse racing jockey of all time in the race. James Robinson won it an unprecedented nine times between 1825-1848, the first on Enamel in 1825. Others include Cadland in 1828, Riddlesworth 1831, Clearwell 1833, Glencoe 1834, Ibrahim 1835, Bay Middleton 1836, Conyngham 1847, and Flatcatcher 1848.
Legendary jockey Lester Piggot took his place in the winners’ enclosure on five occasions. His first win is coming in 1957 on Capello. Wins followed this on Sir Ivor in 1968, Nijinsky two years later, Shadeed in 1985, and his final 200 win was on Rodrigo de Triano in 1992.
Kieron Fallon’s five victories between 2000- 2014 put him up there alongside Lester Piggot. Wins on Kings Best in 2000, Golan the following, twice a winner between 2005-2006 on Footstepsinthesand and George Washington, respectively, and Knight of Thunder in 2014. Other well-known jockeys to be successful include Ryan Moore, Frankie Dettori, Pat Summlen, Pat Eddery and Willie Carson.
Irish trainer Aiden O’Brien has had an impressive ten wins including the 2019 winner Magna Grecia. Before that, there was King of Kings in 1998, Rock of Gilbrator in 2002, followed by two consecutive wins in 2005 and 2006 with Footstepsinthesand and George Washington. The next win came two years later with Henrythenavigator, followed by Camelot in 2012, Gleneagles 2015, and another double whammy in 2017-2018 with Churchill and Saxon Warrior, which means the award-winning trainer had won the last three up to 2019 until Andrew Balding won it in 2020 with his star three year old Kamenko.
Why is It Called 2000 Guineas?
Back in the day horses races were typically named according to their original prize money, so basically the prize money was that. Back then a guinea was worth 21 shillings, or £1.05 in today’s money!
What is 2000 Guineas in Pounds?
A guinea is now worth £1.05… so x 2000 + £2100!
The first horse racing classic of the season it is always a race to saviour, held at probably the most prestigious track and well know racecourse in the world – Newmarket. The 2000 Guineas Stakes is a superb and hugely anticipated clash that kick starts the entire flat season or the best and most exciting colts clashing for prestigious and money. If you can get there we highly recommend that you do; the performances and atmosphere is often electric! It’s a race where stars are crowned and dreams are broken.
A top tip is if you are planning to go – make sure you book ahead as the town gets booked up months and months ahead!