Luxembourg came back into the big time as he landed the 2022 Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown for Aidan O’Brien and Ryan Moore.
Forced to miss the Derby with a setback after finishing third in the 2000 Guineas, the Camelot colt travelled in mid-division in the 10-furlong showpiece after starting at 7-2, allowing stablemate Stone Age to take a clear early lead before clicking into gear two furlongs from home.
After reeling Stone Age in, Luxembourg swept to the front and came out on top in battle with Grand Prix de Paris winner Onesto to prevail by half a length.
Fellow French raider Vadeni (7-4 favourite) did not have the clearest of passages in third, ahead of Mishriff in fourth.
A delighted O’Brien said: “It was unbelievable from a lot of people (to get the horse back) and Ryan gave him an incredible ride. We felt going to the Curragh (for the Royal Whip) that he was only ready for a racecourse gallop.
“He couldn’t come here unless he’d had a race, and that’s why we were so happy with him at the Curragh. He had 20 to 30 per cent to improve from the Curragh, and you usually don’t run a race in a Group race like that.
“The plan and the dream was, if we could get him back, we’d mapped out three races for him – if we could get him to the Curragh he could come here and if he came here he could go to the Arc. The pace was solid and it was an even pace. He’s obviously a very good horse.”
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Watch how events unfolded and hear from jockey Ryan Moore and O’Brien in conversation with Racing TV’s Fran Berry and Tom Stanley.
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