Stradivarius capped a magnificent season when coming out on top in a dramatic race for the Qipco British Champions Long Distance Cup.

Winner of the newly-inaugurated Stayers' Million after four victories throughout 2018, Stradivarius completed a five-timer to confirm his status as the undisputed staying king.

It was hard work, though, as he had to be brave to go through a gap for Frankie Dettori on the inside turning for home, which had been left by the pace-setting Flag Of Honour.

After seeing that horse off, Stradivarius appeared to leave Thomas Hobson a little short of room when Willie Mullins' charge tried to sneak up the far rail in the final furlong.

However, Stradivarius (even-money favourite) would not be denied and the John Gosden-trained four-year-old crossed the line a length and a half to the good from the Irish raider.

Dettori said: "I had half a chance and took it, but you can only do that when you have plenty of horse. He's been a model of consistency and owns the crown of being champion stayer - you can't take it away from him. He's all heart, this horse."

Gosden was full of praise for Dettori's winning efforts.

"I said 'the ground is one thing, but we are going to get put in a box drawn in stall one - and he will have to be Houdini to get out of it' - but he did. He saw that glimpse on the bend and dived for it. Ryan (Moore, on Flag Of Honour) tried to shut it - but thank goodness ,it was too late."

Mullins said of his runner-up: "He ran a cracker. We are delighted. I thought Oisin (Murphy) gave him a super ride. He is full of guts. He stuck to the plan, and it nearly came off.

"We had one plan, and it didn't matter what the pace was. We knew what we were going to do, and it nearly worked.

"We were hoping to be in Melbourne this year. I thought I had him in terrific order. We've all next year to run in these races."

Ryan Moore rides Magical (white cap) to victory

Magical proved the pick of Aidan O'Brien's six runners to win the Qipco British Champions Fillies & Mares Stakes at Ascot, as hot favourite Lah Ti Dar fell short in the Group One showpiece.

Tenth when last seen in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe earlier this month, Magical (5-1) was happier back against her own sex and comfortably landed the spoils.

She was brought with a strong run early in the straight by Ryan Moore to head the John Gosden-trained favourite Lah Ti Dar over a furlong out.

The daughter of Galileo maintained the tempo to hold another Gosden runner, Coronet, by a length.

O'Brien said: "She ran a lovely race in the Arc, and we really fancied her for the Oaks last year - (but) she had a little setback and didn't get to run.

"Wayne (Lordan) rode her in the Arc and he loved her. Wayne came in after the Arc and he was brilliant, he said there was no doubt this filly does get a mile and a half as that was her first time over a mile and a half and that is why we came back here. She was working lovely - and we're really, really delighted.

"We were always going to take our time with her (in the race), and she had a lovely position and relaxed. So I couldn't have been happier.

"That is her first Group One. We thought she might handle ease in the ground as she had form with ease in the ground as a two-year-old.

Asked about a trip to the Breeders' Cup, the Ballydoyle trainer said: "It's possible. Obviously, the lads will decide what they want to do - like they always do.

"We see how they come out of races, then we suggest a plan we think might suit - then the lads will make the decision themselves.

"She is very valuable and as she had an injury we want to make sure she is OK if she was to go to America."

Paul Hanagan and Sands of Mali lead the field home

Sands Of Mali ran his rivals into the ground to spring a 28-1 surprise in the Qipco British Champions Sprint Stakes at Ascot.

Richard Fahey's three-year-old speedster had been disappointing since looking unlucky when beaten in the Commonwealth Cup, but bounced back in style.

Sands Of Mali got a great start and his jockey Paul Hanagan was soon setting the pace he wanted.

Harry Angel - who was rather reluctant to load at the start - came out of the pack to challenge, but Hanagan had left a bit in the tank and Sands Of Mali kept up the gallop to score by a length.

Donjuan Triumphant was a length and a quarter away in third place.

Fahey said of the winner: "I've always felt he is a Group One horse - but as you can see a couple of his runs have been very disappointing, and we don't know why.

"Today he got the soft lead he needed, and from half way I was happy. It's a good result for a small trainer up the north!"

Hanagan was emotional as he voiced his thanks to the trainer.

"I enjoyed that one," he said. "I can never describe it, to ride a winner like this for the boss. He's been with me from day one. To repay him like this is very special ... he's always been there."