Just like any other big racing festival, Royal Ascot is not adverse to the odd surprise winner going in at gigantic odds.

Since the horse racing authorities started recording the official starting prices in the 1970’s, several results have left punters feeling both gobsmacked and ecstatic at the same time.


Here are just a handful of examples of those halcyon moments that Royal Ascot connections and bettors have enjoyed down the years:

The Biggest Of Them All

Nando Parrado became the biggest-priced winner in Royal Ascot history when springing a 150-1 shock in the 2020 Coventry Stakes.

After finishing a well-beaten fifth at Newmarket earlier that month Nando Parrado had been written off by the odds compliers, but he stayed on best to finish a length clear of the 3/1 second favourite Qaader.

His trainer Clive Cox was totally unfazed by the result saying afterwards: "The only surprise was the price. I think we shouldn't treat it as a fluke because we had a positive plan for him anyway”.

After going on to place in two Group One races in France, Nando Parrado never won another race and now stands at the Irish National Stud.

However, 150/1 shot Valiant Force matched the feat in 2023 when claiming the Norfolk Stakes in the opening race of Day 3 at the Royal meeting.

He was the rank outsider of the field but everything fell into place on the day to give trainer Adrian Murray and owners Amo Racing a famous winner.

Whether he can go on to win a Group 1 race after clinching his first Group 2 success is up for debate but punters who latched onto Valiant Force will be celebrating long into the night.

Racing fans will be keeping a close eye on the rest of the 2024 Royal Ascot meeting to see if any other huge shocks occur on the biggest flat racing stage of all.

100/1 Bashers

In 1990 the Britannia Stakes was won by a 100-1 outsider in the Royal Ascot betting - Fox Chapel, trained by Richard Hannon Snr and ridden by Gary Hind.

Fox Chapel won seven races from 77 races under rules, including five over hurdles. He won five of those races as the favourite and only ever won once at 100/1.

Flashmans Papers provided yet another shock result when winning the Windsor Castle Stakes at 100-1 in 2008.

He ran at Ascot as a maiden for trainer John Best after finishing third at Windsor and Kempton.

Jockey Steve Drowne rode the speedy son of Exceed And Excel out over the 5f minimum trip to beat the strongly-fancied Bushranger. 

Clickety-Click 66

Amfortas looked to have immense potential when landing the 1996 Group 2 King Edward VII Stakes, but had only one more run, finishing last in the Irish Derby.

Clive Brittain's horse made all the running in the 1m4f contest to win by half a length for jockey Brett Doyle.

On a day were the bookies were taking a hammering because the favourites kept obliging, Cosmic Sun handed them a measure of relief with a 66-1 win in the 2009 King George V Handicap.

The Richard Fahey-trained three-year-old shed his maiden tag at the 11th time of asking and gave Paul Hanagan his first Royal Ascot victory.

The 50 Club

There has been a total of six 50/1 scorers down the years at Royal Ascot. Hopefully one or two of you backed them in your own horse racing online bets

  • Night Of Wind 1983 Queen Mary Stakes

  • Jacamar 1988 Chesham Stakes

  • Pontenuovo 1990 Royal Hunt Cup

  • Assatis 1990 Hardwicke Stakes

  • Lucayan Prince 1996 Jersey Stakes

  • Nijoom Dubai 2007 Albany Stakes


Steven is a sports and horse racing enthusiast and is a member of the Horseracing Writers and Photographers Association (HWPA) in the United Kingdom.

He is a regular visitor to Paris Longchamp for the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe and a lifelong fan of the Aintree Grand National, a subject he writes about 52 weeks of the year. Last year he reached the impressive milestone of attending the last 30 renewals of the Grand National.