Bondi Beach (3c Galileo-One Moment In Time, by Danehill) became another Classic winner for Galileo on Saturday when taking the G1 Ladbrokes St Leger at Doncaster.
The Aidan O’Brien-trained colt (pictured) was awarded the race after a stewards’ enquiry having initially lost out by a head after suffering interference.
It was a first British Classic victory for Colm O’Donoughue, who commented: “He is a lovely big colt and that is only the fifth start of his life – he can only improve.”
“He is a big rangy colt. He only does the bare minimum but I have tried two times to get him to the front and two times he was only doing the bare amount. He should have won at York [in the G2 Great Voltigeur], and again in this race, he changed his legs, lost his balance and again he has come back. I would have preferred it if the pace was a bit stronger but that is the way it goes.”
“It is important to win my first St Leger. I need this. I want this. I want to thank Mr Tabor, Mr Magnier and Mr Smith and thank Aidan for sending me here and giving me this chance. I wanted it. I received interference twice, with my horse receiving the most interference of all.”
Paul Smith, whose father Derrick jointly owns Bondi Beach, added: “It was a great horse race with two fabulous horses fighting to the line – that is what horse racing is about. It is a very special moment. This is a Classic horse race and Ladbrokes have done very well in promoting it. It is an honour to win this race. I would imagine he will stay in training next year. The lads will go home and talk about it but I imagine he will.”
A great day for Galileo continued at Leopardstown when Bondi Beach’s stable companion Johannes Vermeer (2c Galileo-Inca Princess, by Holy Roman Emperor) took the G3 Willis Champions Juvenile Stakes
“I’m delighted with him,” said Aidan O’Brien. “He was a bit disappointing first time in Tipperary but that can happen over seven furlongs there. He came forward great from that and won nicely in Killarney where Emmet (McNamara) liked him.
“Joseph was very happy with him today. He picked up plenty when he asked and battled well.”