A coveted Cheltenham Gold Cup trophy (similar to the one seen here) has been stolen during a £150,000 raid on a exclusive country home, police confirmed.
The prize – one of the most prestigious awards in the racing world – is made of solid gold and worth at least £10,000.
The ‘Challenge Cup’ and the ‘Britannia Handicap Cup’ horse racing medal was also taken during a raid on the home of multi-millionaire Raymond Mould.
Burglars struck at property developer Mould’s country pile in Wormington, near Broadway, Glos., on Wednesday morning.
A new replica of The Gold Cup is cast every year.
The cup stolen belonged to Raymond Mould, 70, who won the trophy in 1988 after his horse Charter party, ridden by Richard Dunwoody, romped to victory.
Thieves are thought to have broken into the home of Mr Mould between midnight and 6.50am this morning.
Other items taken in the raid include bronze ornaments in the shape of a hare, a spaniel with a pheasant in its mouth and two horses being ridden by jockeys.
A dark wooden clock with gold sides and a gold mechanism, two silver trophies, a silver fisherman ornament and a cigarette case was also taken.
The combined value of the break-in is said to be around £150,000.
Police today appealed for anyone with information to come forward.
Raymond Mould, a racehorse owner whose Bindaree won the Grand National in 2002, features in The Sunday Times Rich List with a net worth of £60m.
He and business partner Patrick Vaughan set up Arlington Securities in the 1980s – which became the largest property company in Europe – and then Pillar Property, which they set up in 1994 and sold in 2005.
The pair sold Arlington to British Aerospace for £278m in 1989 just before the 1990s crash.
With backing from General Electric and an investment trust, they then set up Pillar Property, which cashed in on the boom in out-of-town retail parks.
Pillar went public in 1994 with a value of £170m, returned £438m to investors over the next 11 years and was eventually sold to Sir John Ritblat at British Land for £811m in 2005 – two years ahead of the market crash.
In 2007 they set up London & Stamford – now the fourth-biggest company on the junior AIM market and with a value of £660m – and about to move into the FTSE 250.
Gloucestershire Police yesterday confirmed the trophy, which is the showcase of Cheltenham race week, was stolen and appealed for help in tracing it.
* The Cheltenham Gold Cup is a National Hunt (Grade 1) chase held on the new course at Cheltenham over a distance of three miles, two-and-a-half furlongs with twenty-two fences to be hurdled.
The race is the feature of the Cheltenham Festival held each year in March.
It’s prestigious status in the racing calendar means it is commonly referred to as a the Blue Riband of chases.
Previous winners of the Cheltenham Gold Cup include Cottage Rake (3 times 1948 – 1950), Arkle (3 times 1964 – 1966), L’Escargot (2 times 1970 – 1971), Desert Orchid (1 time 1989), Best Mate (3 times 2002-2004).
The most recent holder of the Cheltenham Gold Cup is Imperial Commander.
The Gold Cup is presently the most highly paid, non-handicap chase in the UK, with a £500,000 prize pool.