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The three-day Newmarket July meeting ranks highly amongst Europe’s flat racing festivals and is one in which features the prestigious Group One July Cup over six-furlongs for horses aged three years or older. A capacity crowd of 45,000 routinely flock to the Suffolk track to witness some of the world’s leading sprinters do battle on the famous July course and we have free horse racing tips for the meeting.
Notorious for it’s vibrant burst of fashion, the Newmarket July festival offers a fantastic blend of world class flat racing action as well as a perfect setting for all social occasions. It’s historic surroundings coupled with beautiful scenery makes the widely-regarded home of British horse racing an experience like no other.

The cluster of Britain’s finest training facilities, the Tattersalls sales, National Stud and National Horse Racing Museum rank Newmarket as the leading racing experience in Europe and one which sees people from all walks of life descend upon the area for three days in July.

july cup - the race's rich history

Established in 1876, the July Cup is renowned for being one of the premier sprint contests in the racing calendar and consistently attracts elite profiles from Britain, Ireland, America, Australia and Asia. During the 1971 introduction of the current grading system, the July Cup was originally given Group Two status before being upgraded to a Group One in 1978.

Run on the third and final day of Newmarket’s July showcase, the six-furlong highlight represents the great power and speed of the thoroughbred racehorse in a contest that frequently produces Europe’s champion sprinter at the Cartier Racing Awards each year.

With a recent winner’s list that features the likes of Stravinsky, Oasis Dream, Fleeting Spirit, Dream Ahead and Slade Power, the July Cup stands as one of the leading races in the sprinting division and continuously produces a worthy victor. The open nature of Newmarket’s July setting offers an even playing field for each entrant to perform to the best of their abilities.

july cup expert betting tips

Since 2008, the July Cup has been a part of the Global Sprint Challenge, a series of the ten best sprint races from across Australia, Japan, Hong Kong, Dubai and the United Kingdom. A prize fund of $1,000,000 is awarded to the horse that wins three separate Group One’s in three different countries during the campaign with $750,000 going to the respective trainer and $250,000 to the owner. 

The inclusion of the July Cup in such a series shows the standing that the contest has on the world scene. With some of the sport’s leading trainers targeting the July highlight in recent seasons, winning the Group One has become a notable feather in the cap of some of the world’s best handlers.

Not only do you need a horse with an immense level of speed to win the July Cup, but you also need them to overcome the unusual test that the July course at Newmarket presents. Run over a straight six-furlongs, the July Cup begins with a steady downhill run for the best part of five-furlongs before a strong uphill final furlong finish to the line. It means a horse must possess the correct use of balance and pace to be prepared for an uphill run-in that can be underrated by jockeys.

Dream Ahead.

On many occasions you will find front-runners burn too much energy in the frantic downhill charge towards the one-furlong pole, which leaves them gasping for air, and a last ditch resurgence, inside the final 200 yards. It has been reiterated by riders over the past decade that the need to manage the pace efficiently in this Group One is critical to any winning claims. Racing too fast, too early is a frequent habit that many fail to overcome.

The success of the three-year old Dream Ahead in 2011 showcased the necessary tactical awareness needed in a July Cup. Ridden by jockey Hayley Turner, Dream Ahead was waited with in the rear of the field before using his reserved energy inside the last 100 yards to topple those that had raced prominently. 

Despite being regarded as a sprint, it is somewhat crucial that a horse boasts the necessary ability to see out the full six-furlongs. The downhill nature of the track can catch riders off guard as being a lenient test for their horse. However, the fact that Dream Ahead went on to triumph in a Group One over seven-furlongs following his July Cup victory in 2011 proves that an overall mixture of pace, balance, speed and stamina is strongly required to win Newmarket’s six-furlong highlight.

Expert July Cup tips

Read our expert selections for the July Cup at Newmarket.

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An ever-growing prize fund of £500,000 for the Group One July Cup provides evidence that the overall showcase of Newmarket’s July festival continues to thrive in popularity. Year on year, the country’s leading figures from the worlds of sport, fashion and showbusiness attend the famous three-day meeting making it not only a racing meeting, but a real British event. 

The historic background that the festival boasts offers a unique experience for its spectators that is rarely found elsewhere. 

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