marked on base and cover
The base with 'Ascot, 1906' in applied gold letters and gold plaques with the Royal Arms, 'Won by Mr S.B. Joel's Bachelor's Button Aged. 9 st 4 lb.', and "Ridden by D. Maher. Trained by C. Peck, Record Time 4 Min 23 1-5 Sec.'
This cup commemorates one of the greatest upsets in British racing history.
"The Ascot Gold Cup [of 1906] was supposed to be the final jewel in the crown for the greatest of all racemares. Five-year-old Pretty Polly was unbeaten in 20 starts in England and started at 4-11. But she had had a close call against Bachelor's Button in the two and a quarter mile Jockey Club Cup the previous year and this time he wore her down to score by a length. The winner was a good and gallant horse but he had shattered a public idol and was greeted with a stony silence" (Sue Montgomery, "Royal turning points - six milestones that defined the festival" The Independent, 17 June 2001).
The horse's owner was Soloman Barnato Joel, son of an East End publican and nephew of diamond millionaire Barney Barnato. After Barney's 1897 "suicide by drowning", Soloman became head of Barnato Brothers. In 1903 he bought an estate at Maiden Erlegh and founded a stud of the same name.
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