- Three-year-olds and upwards. Five furlongs. First run 1911
A showcase for raw speed, this prestigious sprint was introduced in 1911 to mark the previous year’s succession of King George V to the British throne.
The Audi Stakes is Goodwood’s top sprint and in 2002 was named the King George 200th Anniversary Stakes to celebrate 200 years of racing at Goodwood.
Sir Gordon Richards rode the winner in six consecutive seasons from 1947 to 1952, including on the great Abernant in 1949 and 1950. Right Boy and Lester Piggott emulated Abernant’s feat in 1958 and 1959, while the brilliant mare Lochsong defeated Paris House in a thrilling finish to the 1993 renewal and saw off Mistertopogigo 12 months later. She won the Group One Prix de l’Abbaye at Longchamp in both those years.
Another great mare, Hever Golf Rose, triumphed in 1995 and capped a great season with victory in the Prix de l’Abbaye at Longchamp. Fillies and mares are etched in the folklore of the Audi Stakes, with the likes of Land Of Dreams (1998), Cassandra Go (2000), Agnetha (2002) and La Cucaracha (2006) also beating the boys in recent years. Soba, ridden by Dandy Nicholls who is now known as a trainer of sprinters, succeeded in 1983, the year after her victory in the bluesquare.com Stewards’ Cup, while Enticing continued the trend in 2008 as the William Haggas-trained filly scored by a length.
Kingsgate Native, a dual Group One winner, was most impressive when successful in 2009, beating Total Gallery who subsequently captured the Group One Qatar Prix de l’Abbaye de Longchamp.
The race was promoted to Group Two status for 2010, with the average rating for the first four in the previous three years having been 111.08.
Borderlescott, winner of the 2006 Stewards’ Cup and twice victorious in the Group One Nunthorpe Stakes (2008 & 2009), landed the Tanqueray King George Stakes for trainer Robin Bastiman as the 9–2 favourite. Another northern trainer Kevin Ryan went onto the scoreboard in 2011 when he sent out Masamah to win in great style.
Ahonoora (1978/1979) is the only other horse apart from Soba to achieve the back-to-back Stewards’ Cup/King George Stakes doubles since the Second World War.
Lester Piggott rode an amazing nine winners of this race between 1958 and 1984, while Sir Michael Stoute sent out his third winner in 2009 and is catching up to Paddy Prendergast’s achievement of training four victors.
The age of the winners since 1946 has been 3yo – 29; 4yo – 19; 5yo – 10; 6yo – 6; 8yo – 1, while 25 out of the 65 markets leaders have triumphed.
Tanqueray switched sponsorship from the Richmond Stakes to this race in 2012.