Coolmore Stud-based sire Zoffany (Dansili) netted his third Group 1 winner and 36th stakes winner on Sunday as the Joseph O’Brien-trained Thunder Moon (2 c ex Small Sacrifice by Sadler's Wells) landed the Vincent O'Brien National Stakes (Gr 1, 7f).
On paper it looked a tall order for the two-year-old to win the Group 1, having only had one other run in his career when breaking his maiden over seven furlongs at the Curragh on August 9.
However, the giant leap into elite company proved no issue for the two-year-old, showing an explosive turn of foot to beat Wembley (Galileo) by a length and a half, while St Mark's Basilica (Siyouni) finished another short-head away in third.
Thunder Moon is one of three winners out of the unraced Sadler’s Wells (Northern Dancer) mare Small Sacrifice, making him a half-brother to Sir Henry Cecil Stakes (Listed, 1m) winner Table Rock (Fastnet Rock).
Small Sacrifice herself is out of Trust In Luck (Nashwan), who is herself the grandam of Group 3 winner Love Lockdown (Verglas) and Saint-Cloud Criterium International (Gr 1, 2000m) winner Vert De Grece (Verglas).
The colt’s third dam is Irish 1,000 Guineas (Gr 1, 1m) winner Trusted Partner (Affirmed) - the dam of Grade 1 winner Dress To Thrill (Danehill).
Trusted Partner is also grandam of Search For A Song (Galileo) - who landed a second Irish St Leger (Gr 1, 1m6f) later on in the afternoon - while she is also the grandam of Group 1 winner and former Swettenham Stud shuttler Free Eagle (High Chaparral), Group 2-winning pair Custom Cut (Notnowcato) and Sapphire (Medicean) and Listed scorer Falcon Eight and Valac (Dark Angel), who landed the 2019 Queens Cup (Gr 3, 2500m).
Thunder Moon joins Albinga and Ventura Storm - who also landed the Moonee Valley Gold Cup (Gr 2, 2500m) - as Zoffany’s other Group 1 winners and he stood at Coolmore Stud for a fee of €22,500 in 2020.
Quality colt!— Racing TV (@RacingTV) September 13, 2020
The supplemented Thunder Moon steps up from maiden company to Group 1 level for a thrilling success in the Vincent O'Brien National Stakes at @curraghrace @JosephOBrien2 @declanmcdonogh#LICW2020 @IrishChampsWknd pic.twitter.com/Lwcox2TxEO