Manchester United on the brink of becoming the most successful team in English Premier League history.
|Brown Panther owner and footballer Michael Owen celebrated victory in the King George V Stakes [GALLO/GETTY]
Fame And Glory gave Irish trainer Aidan O’Brien a fifth victory in the prestigious Gold Cup race at Royal Ascot on Thursday.
The 11-8 favorite, ridden by Jamie Spencer, won the 2½-mile (4km) race by three lengths ahead of 16-1 shot Opinion Poll. Brigantin, which also went out at 16-1, was 4½ lengths further back in third.
“We didn’t go very fast early,” Spencer said.
“My fellow wasn’t keen, but because he has so much class he is used to going that bit quicker… Aidan’s a great trainer and his first two races this season were all about bringing him on.”
“Everybody was doubting him for the last few weeks, but we never had any doubts and I’m absolutely tickled pink.”
“Everybody was doubting him for the last few weeks, but we never had any doubts and I’m absolutely tickled pink”
Fame and Glory jockey Jamie Spencer
The five-year-old Fame And Glory’s stablemate Yeats won the Gold Cup four consecutive times for O’Brien between 2006 and 2009.
Queen Elizabeth II, who unveiled a statute of Yeats at Ascot on Tuesday, presented the Gold Cup to O’Brien.
“Very few mile-and-a-quarter Group One winners run in the Gold Cup,” O’Brien said.
“(But) when horses have so much class they can often stay. Class makes them stay and it’s the ultimate test when you go that extreme distance.”
In the King George V Stakes, Manchester United striker Michael Owen was celebrating when Brown Panther finished six lengths ahead of Census.
The 4-1 joint-favorite, which is trained by Tom Dascombe and ridden by Richard Kingscote, is part of Owen’s Manor House stables in northern England.
It was Owen’s second victory at this year’s festival and the footballer was in tears following Brown Panther’s win on Thursday. The victory came just 24 hours after he celebrated his first Royal Ascot victory as an owner with Rhythm of Light.
“When I play football I don’t get nervous because I can do something about it,” said Owen, whose United side won the Premier League last month.
“With racing you are in the lap of the gods.”
“I don’t deserve any credit. Obviously I’ve invested a lot of money, but it’s all down to Tom, Richard and the staff, I’m just the owner, but I’m delighted to have such a nice horse. There’s not many better feelings than this.”
On Ladies’ Day, showers did not dampen the spirits of racegoers, with ornate hats out in full force.
Queen Elizabeth II, clad in pink, was present at the races for the third day in a row. Princesses Anne and Beatrice were among the other royals present at the 300-year-old course.