/ Racing

British duo eye Irish Champion Stakes prize at Leopardstown

Updated: Friday, 07 Sep 2012 15:47

So You Think and Seamie Heffernan (r) move clear of Snow Fairy in last year's Irish Champion renewal
So You Think and Seamie Heffernan (r) move clear of Snow Fairy in last year's Irish Champion renewal

Nathaniel and Snow Fairy will be trying to end the home team's dominance in the Red Mills Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown.

The prestigious Group One prize has stayed on home soil since 2003, but the British challengers lead the market and rightly so, because Nathaniel so nearly successfully conceded weight to Danedream in the King George, while Snow Fairy made a sparkling return from injury in France last month.

So You Think beat Snow Fairy to give Aidan O'Brien his seventh Irish Champion last year and the Ballydoyle handler this times relies on the durable St Nicholas Abbey and the three-year-old Daddy Long Legs.

Born To Sea and Light Heavy also represent the Classic generation and complete the select line-up.

Dermot Weld's Emulous is back to defend her Coolmore Fusaichi Pegasus Matron Stakes crown, but she hasn't been seen since performing below her best in the Windsor Forest Stakes.

Duntle enjoyed a better Royal Ascot, winning the Sandringham, and is Emulous's biggest threat, having landed the Desmond Stakes here on her most recent appearance.

The first running of the ICON Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Trial has attracted a decent field, and Orgilgo Bay and Dibayani cross swords for the third time, with the score currently one all.

Weld's Speaking Of Which, so impressive in the Gallinule Stakes, missed the Irish Derby on account of the testing conditions and he reappears after a summer holiday in the KPMG Enterprise Stakes.

His stablemate Big Break got no luck on her Galway introduction but is out to make amends in the opening Irish Stallion Farms EBF Fillies Maiden at 3.40, and another Weld representative, Mouteab, arrives at a potentially informative Irish Stallion Farms EBF (C & G) Maiden on the back of two second placings.

Smart filly Lily's Angel has her first outing for Ger Lyons in the Leopardstown September Handicap, while Willie Mullins' Call Me Bubbles is on a hat-trick mission in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Handicap.