Auguste Rodin Wins The Group 1 Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown

Auguste Rodin Back To Brilliant Best In Irish Champion Stakes

Auguste Rodin (3c Deep Impact - Rhododendron, by Galileo) returned to his brilliant best to lead home a 1-2 for Ballydoyle in Saturday’s Group 1 Champion Stakes at Leopardstown.

The son of Deep Impact came into the race with three Group 1 wins to his name and was sent off favourite to provide Aidan O’Brien with his fourth straight win in the €1.25million feature. Tracking the leaders under Ryan Moore, he quickened approaching the turn for home and was last to come off the bridle. Ridden from the two furlong marker, he led a furlong later and ran on strongly to deny stablemate Luxembourg (Camelot) by half a length.

“He is a great horse, that's the bottom line,” O’Brien later summarised. “He was always a brilliant horse from the first day he worked. Everyone knows what he is worth and how important he is to the breed because he brings two continents together with his pedigree.”

“It never really felt in any real doubt,” Ryan Moore later revealed. “I'm delighted with him. It's a fantastic job to get him back. He's beaten some proven Group 1 horses so it's satisfying.”

As eluded to by Aidan O’Brien, Auguste Rodin boasts a top-class pedigree, being a son of Deep Impact and out of three-time Group 1 winner Rhododendron (Galileo). Fittingly, O’Brien has an international range of options in mind for Auguste Rodin, namely the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, should it be run on good ground, with the Breeders’ Cup is the ultimate aim.

Bred by Coolmore, who own the colt with Westerberg, Auguste Rodin led a four-timer on the card for Ballydoyle. Diego Velazquez kicked things off when making it two from two in the Group 2 Champions Juvenile Stakes, in which stablemate Capulet (Justify) finished second. Group 1 performer Adelaide River (Australia) completed the third leg in the Group 3 Paddy Power Stakes, while the progressive Broadhurst (No Nay Never) flew from last to first in the valuable Sovereign Path Premier Handicap.