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Leopardstown: Eye Of The Storm strikes in Ballyroan

The Aidan O’Brien trained Eye Of The Storm got off the mark for the season with a tough staying performance to take the Group 3 Ballyroan Stakes at Leopardstown. The 4yo, a double Listed winner last season, had so far failed to build on last year’s form since returning, with connections trying a hood in his last few starts in an effort to rekindle his form of old.


The hood was off today however and a step back in trip seemed to bring the best out of the son of Galileo, as he made nearly all to score under Joseph O’Brien. Sent off the 7/4 favourite for the 1m 4f contest, Eye Of Storm originally looked like he would take a tow into the race as Joseph settled his charge behind a steady pace set by the only filly in the field, Roheryn.

Knowing that his charge has stamina to burn, Joseph quickly sent his mount to the head of affairs in an attempt to quicken what had become a sedate pace. Main market rival Streetcar To Stars was keen travelling down the back straight, giving jockey Declan McDonogh a tough time of things as he tried hard to settle the 3yo.


As the field made the approach to the turn for home, Eye Of The Storm was still travelling well out in front, with all bar Roheryn starting to struggle. Joseph eventually kicked his mount for home and having found themselves involved in a game battle with Roheryn, will have been happy to see the line coming as they just held on to win by 1/2 length.


Winning trainer Aidan said: “I’m delighted with that. He has only one eye so some days he gets a bit intimated. When he came out of the stalls he wasn’t sure where he was for a moment and he went a bit right.


“He settled into the race when he found out where he was. The other way suits him better as when he goes left handed he can’t see the rail.


“He is in the American Leger at Arlington and we will see how he is, he is a possibility for that.


By Kevin Walsh / Photo: Brian Lawless/PA Wire


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