Auguste Rodin Reigns Supreme In Breeders Cup Turf
Auguste Rodin (3c Deep Impact - Rhododendron, by Galileo) showed his class when beating a stellar field in Saturday’s Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Turf at Santa Anita.
Ten Group/Grade 1 winners lined up for the mile and a half contest, in which Aidan O’Brien’s dual Derby victor was sent off favourite under Ryan Moore. Ridden patiently, the son of Deep Impact raced behind a wall of horses as they turned from home, after which Moore sluiced up a gap on the inner. Ballydoyle’s star produced a smart turn of foot to lead a furlong and a half from home and was driven out to deny triple Grade 1 winner Up To The Mark by three parts of a length, with another half a length back to Japan’s dual Group 1 winner Shahryar (Deep Impact) in third.
“It was incredible and Ryan had incredible confidence in him,” O’Brien said after his unequalled seventh success in the race. “He's so important to the breed. He brings the best of two continents together and we're so lucky to have him.”
Many applauded Moore’s confident ride, though the jockey himself attributed credit his mount. “Ending up on the rail was Plan F really,” he explained. “He was getting a bad trip and I think he won because he's so good.”
Continuing, Moore said, “He's been an unbelievable horse and we've always thought the world of him. He's a brave horse who has won a Group 1 as a two-year-old, a Derby, an Irish Derby, an Irish Champion Stakes and it was a deep field, but Aidan had him in unbelievable shape. He's been a pleasure to ride and I've enjoyed every minute of him.”
MV Magnier later revealed that Auguste Rodin may stay in training next year, saying, “I have this lovely romantic idea about maybe bringing him back for the Classic next year. Like Aidan said on Thursday, he was floating over the dirt. So there's a lot of options open. We'll have to decide in the next week or so.”
Adding to the special nature of Auguste Rodin’s success is that he was bred by Coolmore out of their top-class homebred Rhododendron. Connections won three Group 1’s with the daughter of Galileo, as they did with Auguste Rodin’s grand-dam Halfway To Heaven.