Champion stayer Stradivarius moves owner Nielsen to tears

AFP

London (AFP) - The extraordinary stayer Stradivarius collected a second successive one-million-pound bonus by winning the Lonsdale Cup on Friday, prompting owner Bjorn Nielsen to burst into tears.

Frankie Dettori had sobbed after the John Gosden-trained mare Enable had won the Yorkshire Oaks -- her 10th Group One victory -- on Thursday, setting herself up for a tilt at winning a record third Prix de L'Arc de Triomphe on October 6.

The 48-year-old Dettori and Gosden teamed up again to deliver for Nielsen at York as Stradivarius stretched his winning streak to nine races dating back to October 2017.

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Dettori shadowed Stradivarius's perennial rival Dee Ex Bee before sending him to the front just over a furlong out of the two-mile contest.

Dettori punched the air in celebration as Stradivarius completed the treble of Ascot Gold Cup, Goodwood Cup and Lonsdale for the second year running and in doing so picked up the million-pound ($1.2 million) bonus.

"Of course we will be celebrating tonight and it will be a pretty good one," said Nielsen.

"It is just a privilege, a privilege... he is a special horse," added the United States-based South African, bursting into tears.

Dettori paraded Stradivarius down the finishing straight, as he had done with Enable, to applause and raucous cheers from the crowd in the packed stands.

"I'm not crying today, I used up all my tears yesterday," said Dettori, who with 15 wins is just one off equalling his personal record of Group One victories in a season.

"I waited for a bit and then I said to him 'let's go, let's put this to bed and he went 'whoosh' past them.

"I like the spectators to see these horses because they get attached to them. They are special."

Gosden said it would be up to Nielsen whether he fancied running Stradivarius in the Arc.

"He has a turn of foot like all the great stayers," said Gosden.

"He is not one for grandstand finishes, he just gets to the front and says 'that is my job done.'"

As to whether Stradivarius would give his fellow five-year-old Enable a run for her money, Gosden was fairly certain the mare would have the upper hand.

"It is an unfair question," he said.

"To be honest although I don't like to demean another horse, Enable definitely does operate at a different level."

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