St Mark's Basilica Irish Champion Stakes double

By Andrew Atkinson

Hurricane Lane landed the Cazoo St Leger Group 1 Stakes at Doncaster on Saturday- tipped by under William Buick for Godolphin.

Irish Derby and Grand Prix de Paris winner, Charlie Appleby trained Hurricane Lane, landed Britain’s oldest race ahead of Mojo Star with The Mediterranean, third.

“A lovely performance and a jockey’s dream – a lovely horse to ride,” said jubilant Buick.

“He put the race to bed and I’m sure there’s more room for improvement. We were very confident going into the race,” said Buick.

“I’m privileged to ride the horse,” added Buick.

“He was the class horse in the race – worked out beautifully,” said Buick.

“He took me into the race so nicely and he had that turn of foot at the end. He’s a great horse – it was lovely to win the Leger with him.

“I knew I was on the best horse and it was just a case of keeping it smooth and not setting him too hard a task,” said Buick.

Godolphin collected a seventh St Leger, with Sheikh Mohammed clocking-up an 11th winner – to pocket the £421,355 winner’s purse.

“It was a fantastic performance and it’s great to win any Classic,” said Appleby.

“To win the final Classic and such an historic race is extra special. The great thing about this horse is he quickens.

“For a staying horse he has a gear change – it was a great performance – and the Derby form has held up as well, with Mojo Star running a great race in second.

“I have to give a lot of credit to the team at home,” said Appleby.

Hurricane Lane’s odds for the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe were slashed as low as 9-2: “We mooted after the Grand Prix de Paris that potentially we might look towards an Arc.

“We know it’s never been done – but that doesn’t mean it can’t be done – that’s what I’m a big believer in.

“He’s gone and won well there. We’ll let the dust settle and see how he comes out of it, then start to formulate plans.

“Adayar is the main Arc contender – I’d say we could just be looking towards Hurricane Lane joining him as well,” added Appleby.

Irish Champion Stakes

St Mark’s Basilica tipped by won the Group 1 Irish Champion Stakes for trainer Aidan O’Brien, under jockey Moore.

St Mark’s Basilica gained a 3/4 lengths win over Tarnawa – surviving a Stewards Enquiry after interference in the €1m Irish Champion showpiece.

“It was great – because it was tactical – they sprinted up the straight and he did well,” said O’Brien.

“One thing we knew that he does is quicken – he really quickens. His strong qualities are that he relaxes and can really turn it on and has done that in every race.

“He is an exceptional horse and we’re very lucky to have him,” added O’Brien.

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