The 1000 Guinea's is a Group 1 race open to three-year-old fillies. Run over a mile at Newmarket in late April/early May, the 1000 Guineas was inaugurated in 1814 and is the first of the British Classic races contested by three-year-old horses. The other Classics are the 2000 Guineas (open to colts and fillies), the Oaks (fillies), the Derby (colts and fillies) and the St Leger (colts and fillies).
The 1000 Guineas is the first leg of the Fillies' Triple Crown, the other races being the Oaks and St Leger. This feat is rarely achieved. The last filly to win all three races was Oh So Sharp way back in 1985. Only eight other fillies had won the Fillies' Triple Crown prior to Oh So Sharp, the greatest of them arguably Sceptre. Sceptre not only won the 1000 Guineas, Oaks and St Leger in 1902, but she also won the 2000 Guineas and finished fourth in the Derby. Imagine that happening nowadays?
StanJames.com enjoyed a successful sponsorship of the 1000 Guineas from 2006 - 2010, during which time we demonstrated our support for quality British racing. The final year of our sponsorship of the race saw a renewal of the 1000 Guineas that was mired in controversy.
The 1000 Guineas was won by the 9/2 favourite Special Duty, but only after the intervention of the stewards. First past the post was the rank outsider in the 1000 Guineas betting, the 66/1-shot Jacqueline Quest. Trained by the very popular Henry Cecil, Jacqueline Quest was deemed to have interfered with the French-trained Special Duty in a very tight finish so, consequently, the first two places were reversed.
It is unlikely that the 2011 1000 Guineas will feature as contentious a finish. But you never know...