Jukebox Jury completes memorable St Leger double for Montjeu

Barely 45 minutes after the success of Masked Marvel (3 c Montjeu-Waldmark, by Mark Of Esteem) in the Ladbrokes St Leger, Jukebox Jury (5 h Montjeu-Mare Aux Fees, by Kenmare) completed a Classic double for Montjeu when dead-heating for the Group 1 Irish Field St Leger at the Curragh.

Mark Johnston’s tough and consistent performer had previously proven his stamina with a comfortable Group 2 success over a mile and seven furlongs at Deauville in August, and he once again displayed his battling qualities as he duelled with fellow British raider Duncan throughout the final quarter-mile.

In a thrilling finish, both horses flashed past the post together with the judge unable to separate the pair.

“I thought that he was beaten but he is a typical Mark Johnston horse,” said Jukebox Jury’s jockey Johnny Murtagh afterwards.

“He was very brave because there was a pretty strong headwind and I was racing from a long way out. Both horses stuck their heads down and it is a fair result for everybody – we stretched right away from the rest of the field.

“I just felt that his last run was so good and that he was on an upward curve. It was great to get the win and I am over the moon.”

Johnston’s wife Deirdre was also full of praise for their stable stalwart. “My life was going before me waiting for the photo finish but he such a brave horse. He has been with us for such a long time and deserves to win a race like this.

“The Melbourne Cup has been talked about alongside the Canadian International. We will go home and discuss where we go from here.”

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