Racing: Leading Light cliches fourth St Leger victory

Doncaster Racecourse
Doncaster Racecourse

Favourite Leading Light eased the O’Brien family’s disappointment over Camelot’s failure to land the Triple Crown at Town Moor last year by winning the St Leger.

The 7/2 favourite secured a fourth Leger triumph for trainer Aidan O’Brien and a first for jockey son Joseph, winning by a length and a quarter.

Talent had to make do with runner up spot in her bid to become the first filly to win the race in 21 years.

And Galileo Rock continued his run of major race placings with a third at Doncaster.

A year ago, the entire focus of the Leger was on the expected triumph of Camelot which would have brought an historic and roar Triple Crown.

Encke proved the party-pooper, coming in ahead of the O’Brien trained and ridden Camelot.

But there was to be no disappointment a year on as Leading Light came home, despite a rather slow start to the mile, six furlong, 132 yard race.

“He’s quite lazy in his races - he wears cheekpieces - and I got him going plenty early,” Joseph O’Brien said.

“He jumped a bit slowly and I could see a couple of horses going forward.

“I knew we weren’t going to go much of a gallop, so I gave mine a kick just to get up there.

“I knew if I didn’t hit him until a furlong and a half out he would win.”

Aidan O’Brien added: “Last year was what it was.

“There’s no point looking back and history is no good to anyone.

“This horse stays and he quickens. He’s a very solid horse. ‘He’s versatile trip-wise.

‘’I keep saying it, but it’s a privilege for us to be involved with the team.

“We really appreciate it, to have good horses to ride and train.

“It’s a big team effort and we’re a very small part of it.’’

Galileo Rock was only confirmed for the race on the day with trainer David Wachman concerned over the soft ground - the decision proving somewhat justified.

Last year’s winning jockey Mickael Barzalona finished at the back of the 11 horse field aboard Cap O’Rushes.

Leading Light could now go on to contend the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe with stablemate Camelot unlikely to race.

Full result:

3.50 - The Ladbrokes St Leger Stakes (British Champions Series) (Group One) - 1m 6f 132y

1st (7) 7 Leading Light (IRE) A P O’Brien 3 9-0 p J P O’Brien 7/2f

2nd (4) 1¼ 11 Talent R M Beckett 3 8-11 Jim Crowley 9/1

3rd (1) ¾ 4 Galileo Rock (IRE) D Wachman 3 9-0 W M Lordan 6/1

4th (2) ½ 8 Libertarian C Appleby 3 9-0 p1 William Buick 5/1

5th (9) ¾ 3 Foundry (IRE) A P O’Brien 3 9-0 R L Moore 5/1

6th (5) ½ 10 Secret Number Saeed bin Suroor 3 9-0 S De Sousa 11/1

7th (8) 2½ 9 Ralston Road (IRE) J P Shanahan 3 9-0 T P O’Shea 100/1

8th (6) 5 6 Havana Beat (IRE) A M Balding 3 9-0 L P Keniry 40/1

9th (3) 3¾ 5 Great Hall B J Meehan 3 9-0 K Fallon 20/1

10th (11) 7 2 Excess Knowledge J H M Gosden 3 9-0 James Doyle 11/2

11th (10) 23 1 Cap O’rushes C Appleby 3 9-0 M Barzalona 20/1

Other results: Doncaster, Saturday:

2.05 - The At The Races Champagne Stakes (Group Two) - 7f

1st (5) 4 Outstrip C Appleby 2 8-12 M Barzalona 13/8j

2nd (6) 3 6 The Grey Gatsby (IRE) K A Ryan 2 8-12 G Lee 13/8j

2.40 - The Ladbrokes Portland Handicap - 5f 140y

1st (12) 22 Angels Will Fall (IRE) C Hills 4 9-2 R Winston 16/1

2nd (11) nse 4 Steps (IRE) R Varian 5 9-7 b William Buick 11/2f

3.15 - The OLBG Park Stakes (Group Two) - 7f

1st (10) 11 Viztoria (IRE) E Lynam 3 8-11 W M Lordan 7/2

2nd (9) ¾ 5 Lockwood Saeed bin Suroor 4 9-4 S De Sousa 5/1

4.25 - The Napoleons Casinos And Restaurants Handicap Stakes - 1m4f

1st (6) 8 Forgotten Hero (IRE) C Hills 4 8-12 h J P Spencer 12/1

2nd (10) nk 2 Greatwood L M Cumani 3 9-3 K Fallon 5/1

3rd (4) nk 4 Voodoo Prince E A L Dunlop 5 9-0 p G Lee 9/2

5.00 - The Agriargo UK Tractor Challenge Nursery Handicap Stakes - 1m

1st (5) 9 Photography (IRE) H Palmer 2 8-0 h P Mathers 20/1

2nd (6) s.h 4 Extra Noble R M Beckett 2 8-11 Jim Crowley 5/2f

3rd (2) 1½ 6 Dance Bid C E Brittain 2 8-6 Martin Dwyer 12/1

6.05 - The Harriet Powell Handicap Stakes - 1m

1st (1) 5 Ascription (IRE) H Palmer 4 9-1 ht William Buick 2/1f

2nd (4) 5 6 Gabrial The Great (IRE) L M Cumani 4 8-13 James Doyle 11/2

3rd (5) 5 8 Levitate J J Quinn 5 8-10 v R Winston 13/2