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Order of St George, Minding and Air Force Blue give Aidan O’Brian a Group One race treble

September 13, 2015

AIDAN O’BRIEN and his son Joseph O’Brien recorded a Group 1 double at the Curragh this afternoon, with two stunning performances on day two of the Longines Irish Champions Weekend. The headline display came from Order Of St George in the Palmerstown House Estate Irish St Leger, the final classic of the season in Ireland. The winner was the only three-year-old in the field of 11 but was sent off a very warm 5-4 favourite. O’Brien always looked comfortable on Order Of St George and moved to the front just over two and a half furlongs from home before powering clear to win by 11 lengths. It was a clean sweep of weekend Classics for Aidan O’Brien, after his victory with Bondi Beach in the Ladbrokes St Leger at Doncaster yesterday. The race did have a sad foot-note: last year’s winner Brown Panther suffered a fatal injury.

The O’Briens also teamed up for a Group 1 success earlier in the afternoon when Air Force Blue solidified his position as the clear ante-post favourite for next year’s 2000 Guineas with a three-length success in the Goffs Vincent O’Brien National Stakes. Sent off the 10-11 favourite, he always looked to be travelling well and went right away from his five rivals in the closing stages to leave the Coolmore partners, his owners, dreaming of big things next season, while Minding landed the Moyglare Stud Stakes for jockey Seamus Heffernan.

SOLE Power grabbed a rare victory on home soil today when recording a memorable success in the €200,000 Group 2 Derrinstown Stud Flying Five. The 5-1 co-favourite is best know for his exploits on quick ground across the water but the softer surface didn’t inconvenience him today as he swooped late and fast under a perfectly-timed challenge from Chris Hayes to beat Maarek by a head. Sole Power, who is owned by the Power family, is trained by Eddie Lynam and will now head for the Abbaye at Longchamp next month for which LAdbrokes make him a 7-1 shot for.

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