Aidan O’Brien’s Churchill the headline act as ten go to post for the Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown racecourse


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Aidan O’Brien’s dual 2,000 Guineas winner will be having his second crack at this trip having last been seen finishing runner-up to Ulysses in the Juddmonte International

CHURCHILL is the headline act as ten go to post for the QIPCO Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown on Saturday.

The dual 2,000 Guineas winner was last seen finishing second to Ulysses in the Juddmonte International at York.


Churchill heads the entries for the Irish Champion Stakes

Aidan O’Brien also runs Derby runner-up Cliffs Of Moher and Secretariat Stakes second Taj Mahal.

Martyn Meade sends over Eminent who will be partnered by Frankie Dettori for the first time.



Eminent had a confidence-boosting win last time out

Sir Michael Stoute’s Poet’s Word and Decorated Knight from Roger Charlton’s yard also make the trip over.

Dermot Weld’s saddles The Grey Gatsby and Zhukova with Jim Bolger’s Moonlight Magic and Ken Condon’s Success Days completing the field.

Meanwhile Winter has swerved a clash with Churchill and will instead run in the Matron Stakes.

O’Brien is strongly represented as Hydrangea, Roly Poly and Rhododendron are also set to run.

Winter ascot

Getty Images

Winter is one of four runners for Aidan O’Brien in the Matron

The Ballydoyle quartet are among 12 fillies and mares declared for the Group 1 contest.

Last year’s runner-up Persuasive, trained by John Gosden, is one of three British challengers along with Hugo Palmer’s Unforgetable Filly and the Charlie Appleby’s Wuheida.

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Jean-Claude Rouget’s Qemah, who finished third when a hot favourite 12 months ago, makes the journey from France for another tilt at the one-mile contest.

Fozzy Stack’s Diamond Fields, the Tony Martin-trained Laganore, Jim Bolger’s Bean Feasa and Intricately from Joseph O’Brien’s yard make up the field.

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