Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby
Group 1, Curragh 15:40
€1,250,000 guaranteed,
3yo only, 1m, 4f   
Saturday 2nd July 2023

1 Auguste Rodin 4/11F
2 Adelaide River 33/1
3 Covent Garden 80/1
9 ran Distances: 1½l, 2¼l, 5½l
Time: 2m 33.24s (slow by 0.64s)

Auguste Rodin gave Aidan O’Brien his 100th European Classic win as he fended off stablemate Adelaide River at the Curragh.

The Epsom hero was also a first winner in the race for Ryan Moore as he came home a length and a half clear, with Covent Garden ensuring a clean sweep of the places for the Ballydoyle team in third.

However, the race was marred by a serious injury to San Antonio, another O’Brien runner, who broke down badly on the turn for home, giving Wayne Lordan a nasty fall.

Adelaide River set the pace under Seamie Heffernan with Moore happy to take a lead into the straight.

When he loomed upsides two furlongs from home it looked as if Auguste Rodin would go away and win impressively, but it was not until the final 100 yards that he eventually put the race to bed.

Auguste Rodin is the first horse since Harzand in 2016 to follow up victory at Epsom in the Irish equivalent.

Trainers Quotes

“It was hard to judge the pace with the wind and Ryan said it was all happening a bit too slow for him. He would be much better in a faster run race,” said O’Brien.

“We wanted a strong, even pace and he was just in second gear. He never got into third gear at all. When he got to the front he was all starry eyed.

“We knew the second horse would handle this course much better than Epsom and it wasn’t a surprise that he ran much better.

“This horse is real classic blood. He can cover that mile and a half in a strong, fast pace, move well and do everything right. The Curragh is very fair and very straightforward.”

Regarding the future, O’Brien added: “We will do what we usually do which is wait about seven days and we will talk with the lads and see what they want to do.”

Part-owner Michael Tabor paid tribute to the O’Brien family after another Classic success.

“The whole (O’Brien) family and their work ethic is tremendous, it doesn’t happen just by luck,” he said.

“The work that he puts in every day, and I mean every day, and he loves what he does. He gets up in the morning and he enjoys his work, you have to as life is too short.

“I don’t think you saw the real Auguste Rodin, but it’s always a great thrill to win the Irish Derby.”


Moore was pleased to secure his first Irish Derby win and told RTE: “I’ve been looking forward to riding this horse since Epsom and hoping to tick this race off.

“It’s a hard one, because poor Wayne there – I just hope he’s OK.

“It didn’t suit this horse because it was a messy race. I ended up getting to the front early after us not going quick. He was just waiting when he was in front then.

“He’s a lovely horse and I’m very lucky too. I’m grateful to win this race, it’s just a shame the way it turned out there.

“He’s a lovely horse and that’s what it’s about really, it’s about the horses. He’s a beautiful horse.”

Lordan was taken to Tallaght Hospital for tests.

Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby (Group 1)
€1,250,000 guaranteed, 3yo only, 1m 4f, Class 1
9 ran
Going: Good, Good to Firm in places

1 (1)    Auguste Rodin 3 9-2 A P O'Brien Ryan Moore 4/11F
2 (3)
Adelaide River 3 9-2 A P O'Brien Seamie Heffernan 33/1
3 (6)
Covent Garden 3 9-2 A P O'Brien Declan McDonogh 80/1
4 (9)
Peking Opera 3 9-2 A P O'Brien Tom Marquand 66/1
5 (7)
Up And Under 3 9-2 Joseph O'Brien Mikey Sheehy 28/1
6 (5)
¾ Sprewell 3 9-2 Mrs John Harrington Shane Foley 13/2
7 (4)
Proud And Regal 3 9-2 Donnacha O'Brien Gavin Ryan 33/1
8 (8)
White Birch 3 9-2 John Joseph Murphy Dylan Browne McMonagle 6/1
UR (2) San Antonio 3 9-2 A P O'Brien Wayne Lordan 16/1

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