King George VI & Queen Elizabeth QIPCO Stakes 2019

Lester Piggott statue Royal Ascot 2019

Lester Piggott unveils his statue at Royal Ascot 2019. (Pic: Courtesy of Ascot racecourse).

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PRIZE money of £1.2 million is carried for this year’s renewal of the Group 1 King George VI & Queen Elizabeth QIPCO Stakes on July 27 at Ascot.

Ribot, Nijinsky, Mill Reef, Brigadier Gerard, Dancing Brave, Montjeu and last year’s winner Enable are some of the big names to have won the one-and-a-half-mile contest.

Nijinsky (1970) was one of seven winners for Lester Piggott who also won the valuable event on Meadow Court (1965), Aunt Edith (1966), Park Top (1969), Dahlia (1974), The Minstrel (1977) and Teenoso (1984) at Ascot where a statue of Piggott was unveiled at the royal meeting in June.

The statue is one of nine life-size Lester Piggott statues which were sculpted by William Newton. The first was unveiled at Epsom on Derby day, with others to be located at other racecourses throughout the UK.

The statues have been created in celebration of Piggott’s record nine Derby wins, 65 years since his first on Never Say Die in 1954.

Piggott recorded a record 116 victories at Royal Ascot. His first win came at the meeting in the 1952 Wokingham aboard the Walter Nightingall-trained Malka’s Boy.

Piggott also won the Gold Cup at Ascot a record 11 times, which included three successive victories aboard Sagaro (1975, 1976, 1977).

Speaking at the unveiling at Royal Ascot on June 18, Piggott said: “It is a fantastic statue and it has a great likeness to me – William has done a very good job with it.

“I have enjoyed some great days at Royal Ascot. Everybody looked forward to this meeting. To win the Gold Cup once is special and I was very lucky to win the race on so many occasions.

“I rode some brilliant horses in the race including Sagaro, but probably the best was a filly called Gladness. It has been a very lucky course for me.”

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