Champion Stakes Day at Leopardstown

The stewards were kept busy with enquiries after a couple of the big races.

ST MARK'S BASILICA winning the Irish Champion Stakes.
ST MARK'S BASILICA winning the Irish Champion Stakes. Picture: Pat Healy Photography

The afternoon started off with a surprise in the Champion Juvenile when Atomic Jones on 10/1 held off Stone Age and Absolute Ruler.  Atomic Jones is with Ger Lyons so the winning trainer was not named O'Brien.

The Matron saw the first of the enquiries which went in the end to No Speak Alexander 25/1 by a neck from Pearls Galore 7/1 and favourite Mother Earth allegedly blocked by the winner and kept back to third.

That was the start of a double for Jessica Harrington and Shane Foley who took out the Boomerang Mile with Real Appeal 14/1.  Fev Rover was second on 17/2 and Horoscope third on 11/1 with our selections still running except for Njord who was only a neck back on fourth.

The Irish Champion Stakes was always going to be a battle of tactics with only 4 runners and as expected it was very tight between St Mark's Basilica, Tarnawa and Poetic Flare.  St Mark's did drift across the track and took Tarnawa with him but that is not considered interference according to the current rules, and St Mark's got the trophy.

There was still the G3 Paddy Power and a really tight finish which was finally adjudged to have been won by Camorra 18/1 by a neck from Thunder Kiss 6/1 and a head away was Forbearance in third.

Racing and Sports