Royal Hunt Cup
Heritage Handicap, Ascot 15:35
Winner: £48,518,
3yo plus,
7f 213y, Class 2   
Wednesday 17th June 2020


1 Dark Vision 15/2
2 Montatham 8/1
3 Pogo 25/1
4 Vale Of Kent 22/1
23 ran NR: Jahbath Distances: 1¼l, ½l, 1¼l
Time: 1m 38.32s (fast by 0.28s)

Dark Vision, winner of the G2 Vintage Stakes at Goodwood in 2018, bounced back to form today when landing the ultra-competitive Royal Hunt Cup.

Running the famous blue silks of Godolphin, Dark Vision was a 46th Royal Ascot win for trainer Mark Johnston and a 24th for jockey William Buick. He was delivered to challenge entering the final furlong of the mile contest and went on to score by a length and a quarter from Montatham.

Mark Johnston said: “If you remember this horse winning as a two-year-old at Goodwood, he made that look pretty easy as well, but he’s been nothing but a frustration since he changed hands, so I feel great for Sheikh Mohammed, who bought the horse as a two-year-old and who has had nothing but disappointment since until today. It is a drop in class to handicap company, but the best of handicaps, and he’s done it so well.

“We were the unlucky ones on the far side with Cardsharp, so we have suffered from this draw, so we did expect it would be faster this side. Vale Of Kent’s run a tremendous race up front, as they’ve gone hard all the way. William [Buick] said he just left the horse alone, he needed a bit of luck in running because he was a bit short of room to get through, but he’s been working brilliantly at home so we were not surprised by it – it’s just been a frustration waiting for it to come.

“Remember, he is a G2 winner already. He has come down enough to get into handicaps; whether he goes back up to Group races, we will leave that for the handicappers to decide for us.

“It is very, very different. You can’t say there’s any great atmosphere, but at the same time I’ve been wondering about the logic of having so many runners when the prize-money is so low and the racing is still so competitive, but it’s still great to get one on the board. I am sure in the future being able to say you had a winner at Royal Ascot Behind Closed Doors, like having a winner at Royal Ascot at York, is going to be a great thing for the history books.”

Trainers Quotes

William Buick said: “Dark Vision was bought by connections to be a good horse and now he has rewarded them with a Royal Ascot win.

“He travelled through the race beautifully today. I was always happy with where I was throughout the race today. I was tracking the right horses and it was just all about getting the split at the right time. When he got that split, he quickened up very well. It was a strongly run race and everything fell in place for him today.

“We got a glimpse from Dark Vision as to what we saw from him as a two-year-old. He ran very well at Newcastle and off that run, you could see he was getting back to his best. Today we saw the true horse that he is.

“It is not ideal at all not having spectators. But it is great to be racing and it is fantastic racing at Royal Ascot, as it always is. It is very well organised and very responsible. We have got the show on the road and, under these circumstances, that is great. We can’t wait for the normality to come back and the crowds to come back.”


Royal Hunt Cup Heritage Handicap (Str)
Winner: £48,518, 3yo plus, 7f 213y, Class 2
23 ran
Going: Good

1 (11)     Dark Vision 4 9-1 Mark Johnston William Buick 15/2
2 (5)
Montatham 4 8-12 William Haggas Dane O'Neill 8/1
3 (23)
½ Pogo 4 9-6 Charles Hills Kieran Shoemark 25/1
4 (12)
Vale Of Kent 5 9-9 Mark Johnston Joe Fanning 22/1
5 (19)
Baltic Baron 5 8-12 David O'Meara Daniel Tudhope 33/1
6 (10)
nk Bell Rock 4 9-4 5ex Andrew Balding Oisin Murphy 13/2
7 (18)
nk Afaak 6 9-7 Charles Hills Cieren Fallon 11/1
8 (3)
½ Raising Sand 8 9-9 Jamie Osborne Nicola Currie 40/1
9 (22)
2 Qaysar 5 9-8 Richard Hannon Ryan Moore 16/1
10 (13)
½ Alrajaa 4 9-10 John Gosden Jim Crowley 15/2
11 (14)
¾ Lord Tennyson 4 9-8 John Gosden Frankie Dettori 6/1F
12 (7)
½ Fox Power 4 9-0 Richard Hannon Pat Dobbs 66/1
13 (15)
hd Kynren 6 9-8 David Barron Ben Curtis 16/1
14 (17)
½ Fox Champion 4 9-8 Richard Hannon Sean Levey 40/1
15 (1)
hd Cardsharp 5 9-8 Mark Johnston Adam Kirby 100/1
16 (16)
nk What's The Story 6 9-9 Keith Dalgleish Callum Rodriguez 50/1
17 (2)
nse Beatboxer 4 9-0 John Gosden James Doyle 33/1
18 (20)
nse Petrus 5 8-13 Brian Meehan Martin Dwyer 33/1
19 (4)
Willie John 5 9-5 Roger Varian Andrea Atzeni 25/1
20 (8)
Indeed 5 9-8 Dominic Ffrench Davis Liam Keniry 28/1
21 (9)
Walhaan 4 8-12 Ian Williams Richard Kingscote 80/1
22 (21)
Wargrave 4 9-3 George Baker Pat Cosgrave 66/1
23 (24)
13 Fox Premier 4 8-12 A M Balding S De Sousa 10/1
NR 17 (6) Jahbath 4 9-1 William Haggas NON RUNNER


Past results



2017-WINNER-ZHU FENG 4-9-00 Owner-John Connolly & Odile Griffith; Trainer-Amanda Perrett; Jockey-Martin Dwyer; SP-25/1
2ND-Blair House 4-8-11 Owner-Godolphin; Trainer-Charlie Appleby; Jockey-Mickael Barzalona; SP-16/1
3RD-Tashweeq 4-9-06 Owner-Hamdan Al Maktoum; Trainer-John Gosden; Jockey-Dane O’Neill; SP-66/1
4TH-Ballet Concerto 4-9-02 Owner-Saeed Suhail; Trainer-Sir Michael Stoute; Jockey-Ryan Moore; SP-20/1
29 ran; Time-1m 37.82s; Dist-½, nk, 1¾ 13/2 Fav Abe Lincoln (15th)

2016-WINNER-PORTAGE 4-9-05 Owner-Godolphin; Trainer-Michael Halford IRE; Jockey-James Doyle; SP-10/1
2ND-Librisa Breeze 4-8-11 Owner-Tony Bloom; Trainer-Dean Ivory; Jockey-Robert Winston; SP-8/1
3RD-Mitchum Swagger 4-9-08 Owner- Paul Dean & the Mitchum Swagger P’Ship; Trainer-David Lanigan; Jockey-George Baker; SP- 14/1
4TH-Azraff 4-8-13 Owner-Saleh Al Homaizi & Imad Al Sagar; Trainer-Marco Botti; Jockey-Andrea Atzeni; SP-20/1
28 ran; Time-1m 43.01s; Dist-11⁄4, nk, 1⁄2 13/2 Fav Convey (22nd)

2015-WINNER-GM HOPKINS 4-9-03 Owner-Robin Geffen; Trainer-John Gosden; Jockey-Ryan Moore; SP-8/1
2ND-Temptress 4-8-12 Owner-The Pyoneers; Trainer-Roger Charlton; Jockey-James Doyle; SP-9/1
3RD-Chil The Kite 6-9-08 Owner-Hazel Lawrence & Graham Doyle; Trainer-Hughe Morrison; Jockey-George Baker; SP-16/1
4TH-Balty Boys 4-8-12 Owner-Koo’s Racing Club, Carr & Jacobs; Trainer-Brian Ellison; Jockey-Silvestre de Sousa; SP-25/1 30 ran; Time-1m 40.30s; Dist-nk, 11⁄2, 1⁄2 7/1 Fav Ayaar (9th)

2014-WINNER-FIELD OF DREAM 7-9-01 Owner-N Jackson; Trainer-Jamie Osborne; Jockey-Adam Kirby; SP-20/1
2ND-Chil The Kite 5-9-09 Owner-Hazel Lawrence & Graham Doyle; Trainer-Hughie Morrison; Jockey-George Baker; SP-14/1
3RD-Steeler 4-9-06 Owner-Godolphin; Trainer-Charlie Appleby; Jockey-Silvestre de Sousa; SP-33/1
4TH-Sea Shanty 4-8-12 Owner-The Queen; Trainer-Richard Hannon; Jockey-Richard Hughes; SP-14/1
28 ran; Time-1m 37.88s; Dist-11⁄4, 11⁄4, sh 7/2 Fav Abseil (8th)

2013-WINNER-BELGIAN BILL 5-8-11 Owner-PJL Racing, Byrne, Baker; Trainer-George Baker; Jockey-James Doyle; SP-33/1
2ND-Premio Loco 9-9-09 Owner-Bernard Westley; Trainer-Chris Wall; Jockey-George Baker; SP- 40/1
3RD-Arsaadi 4-8-12 Owner-Sultan Ali; Trainer-William Haggas; Jockey-Liam Jones; SP-50/1
4TH-Don’t Call Me 6-9-05 Owner-Matt & Lauren Morgan; Trainer-David Nicholls; Jockey-Pat Dobbs; SP-25/1
28 ran; Time-1m 38.68s; Dist-3⁄4, 1⁄2, 1⁄2 10/1 Co Favs Two For Two (12th), Fury (18th), Stirring Ballad (22nd)

2012-WINNER-PRINCE OF JOHANNE 6-9-03 Owner-David Storey; Trainer-Tom Tate; Jockey-John Fahy; SP-16/1
2ND-Excellent Guest 5-8-11 Owner-John Guest Racing; Trainer-George Margarson; Jockey-Tom Queally; SP-33/1
3RD-Don’t Call Me 5-8-08 Owner-Matt & Lauren Morgan; Trainer-David Nicholls; Jockey-Sam Hitchcott; SP-50/1
4TH-Field Of Dream 5-9-00 Owner-Ken Gundlach; Trainer-Jamie Osborne; Jockey-Jamie Spencer; SP-66/1
30 ran; Time-1m 38.24s; Dist-1⁄2, 3⁄4, nk 9/2 Fav Dimension (8th)

2011-WINNER-JULIENAS 4-8-08 Owner-Peter Harris; Trainer-Walter Swinburn; Jockey-Eddie Ahern; SP-12/1
2ND-Dance And Dance 5-9-03 Owner-Mohammed Rashid; Trainer-Ed Vaughan; Jockey-Ryan Moore; SP-7/1 Fav
3RD-Invisible Man 5-9-06 Owner-Godolphin; Trainer-Saeed bin Suroor; Jockey-Frankie Dettori; SP-20/1
4TH-Pendragon 8-8-04 Owner-Dan Gilbert & Kristian Strangeway; Trainer-Brian Ellison; Jockey-Jimmy Quinn; SP-33/1
28 ran; Time-1m 38.53s; Dist-1⁄2, 2, ns

2010-WINNER-INVISIBLE MAN 4-8-09 Owner-Godolphin; Trainer-Saeed bin Suroor; Jockey-Frankie Dettori; SP-28/1
2ND-Riggins 6-9-00 Owner-Dubai Thoroughbred Racing; Trainer-Andrew Balding; Jockey-Jimmy Fortune; SP-12/1 3RD-St Moritz 4-8-07 Owner-Renata Jacobs; Trainer-Mark Johnston; Jockey-Joe Fanning; SP-12/1
4TH-Tryst 5-8-05 Owner-Ms L A Morgan; Trainer-John Hammond FR; Jockey-Hayley Turner; SP-12/1
29 ran; Time-1m 37.16s; Dist-1⁄2, 1, 1 8/1 Fav Dandy Boy (21st)

2009-WINNER-FORGOTTEN VOICE 4-9-01 Owner-Susan Roy; Trainer-Jeremy Noseda; Jockey-Johnny Murtagh; SP-4/1 Fav
2ND-Huzzah 4-8-10 Owner-J Gale, J Finch, D Cole, Robin Dollar, David Powell; Trainer-Barry Hills; Jockey-Michael Hills; SP-25/1
3RD-Mia’s Boy 5-9-03 Owner-Iraj Parvizi; Trainer-Chris Dwyer; Jockey-Ryan Moore; SP-9/1
4TH-Nanton 7-8-06 Owner-Stuart Morrison; Trainer-Jim Goldie; Jockey-Daniel Tudhope; SP-16/1
25 ran; Time-1m 40.41s; Dist-21⁄4, 3⁄4, 11⁄2

2008-WINNER-MR AVIATOR 4-9-05 Owner-Sue Brendish; Trainer-Richard Hannon snr; Jockey-Richard Hughes; SP-25/1
2ND-Docofthebay 4-9-06 Owner-Paul Dixon; Trainer-Jamie Osborne; Jockey-Shane Kelly; SP-10/1
3RD-Royal Power 5-8-12 Owner-David Nicholls; Trainer-David Nicholls; Jockey-Adrian Nicholls; SP-25/1
4TH-Kavachi 5-8-04 Owner-Bryan Pennick & Roy Martin; Trainer-Gary Moore; Jockey-Franny Norton 33/1
29 ran, Time-1m 39.63s, Dist-nk, nk, 3⁄4 13/8 Fav Bankable (5th)