Subjectivist and Mythical cut out a strong gallop in Saturday’s St Leger, which placed the emphasis firmly on stamina.
That proved key to the outcome, with the rapidly improving GALILEO CHROME (122p from 115p) – the most unexposed runner in the line-up – staying on strongly to prevail by a neck having come off the bridle before some of his rivals also involved in the finish.
Third-placed Pyledriver, in particular, will be seen to better effect over shorter, but Galileo Chrome could come into his own next season if going down the Cup route.
He has not yet shown the limit of his ability or stamina and ought to take high rank in that division next season, which is not a strong one barring the six-year-old Stradivarius, whose future beyond an attempt at the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe next month is unclear.
Thunder Moon is the best juvenile we have seen this season
Battleground was a significant non-runner in the National Stakes at the Curragh on Sunday but, even without the presence of the Vintage Stakes winner, it still looked like the strongest two-year-old race of the season.
The field of ten included Lucky Vega, who was the highest-rated juvenile colt in training courtesy of his Phoenix Stakes success, and Master of The Seas, who had been so impressive when winning the Superlative Stakes. But, once-raced maiden winner THUNDER MOON (120p from 106p) proved up to the task, recording a figure that catapulted him to the top of the division.
Lucky Vega wasn’t able to show his full worth having met trouble in running, but Thunder Moon was also hampered, which made his effort all the more meritorious.
He travelled powerfully and deployed an excellent turn of foot to pull clear in the final furlong, winning by a length and a half, looking like a top-notch talent. He is deservedly ante-post favourite for next season’s 2000 Guineas.
Sonnyboyliston another Group-race performer for in-form Johnny Murtagh
Johnny Murtagh has been having the best season of his training career and he achieved a landmark victory on Saturday when bagging a first Group 1 success with Champers Elysees in the Matron Stakes at Leopardstown.
Champers Elysees (120 from 112) started the season by winning off a mark of 86, but she has been hugely progressive and has climbed the ranks.
She is by no means the only horse within Murtagh’s stable that has excelled this year however, and SONNYBOYLISTON is another who looks destined to make his mark at Group level having produced a career-best effort on Irish Champions Weekend – landing the concluding mile-and-a-quarter handicap at the Curragh by four-and-a-quarter lengths.
It looked like a competitive handicap, but it was blown apart by Sonnyboyliston, who stormed clear after hitting the front inside the final furlong.
He earned a Timeform rating of 118 (from 111p), which, for context, is only 2lb lower than the figure Irish Derby runner-up Tiger Moth (120p) achieved when so impressive at Leopardstown the previous day.
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