Irish Champion Stakes Free Bets and Odds

Here at we’ll provide an in-depth look at the race, providing expert betting tips as well as the very best form, odds and free bets courtesy of our partners at BoyleSports.

Mark LeachMark Leach
September 6th, 2023
Irish Champion Stakes
Gabriel12 /

This weekend Leopardstown and the Curragh will host the Irish Champions Festival. The two-day event includes 16 races, including no fewer than six Group 1 renewals. The feature race of the weekend is the Royal Bahrain Irish Champion Stakes. Scheduled for 3:20PM on Saturday, there are nine confirmed runners for this 1m2f Group 1 race. Here at we'll provide an in-depth look at the race, providing expert betting tips as well as the very best form, odds and free bets courtesy of our partners at BoyleSports.

Irish Champion Stakes History

The Irish Champion Stakes was first run in 1976 and has been held at Leopardstown continuously since 1991. From 1976 until 1983 the race was contested at Leopardstown as the Joe McGrath Memorial Stakes before switching to Phoenix Park in 1984. The race was known as the Phoenix Champion Stakes from 1984 until the closure of Phoenix Park in 1990.

The Irish Champion Stakes serves as an excellent prep race for some of the biggest flat races scheduled for the autumn. In 2015, Golden Horn became the fifth race winner to go on and win the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe, whilst no fewer than six race winners have gone on to win the Champion Stakes at Ascot.

This Year's Renewal

Auguste Rodin tailed off to finish last of ten in his most recent race; the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Qipco Stakes at Ascot in July. However, the form shown when winning both the Betfred Derby at Epsom and the Irish Derby has seen him installed as the bookies' favourite for Saturday's feature race. Auguste Rodin's only previous run at Leopardstown ended in success as he landed last year's Group 2 KPMG Champions Juvenile Stakes over one mile.

As well as the Derby double over 1m4f, Auguste Rodin has also achieved Group 1 success over one mile by winning the Futurity Trophy at Doncaster last October.

Auguste Rodin's trainer, Aidan O'Brien has won a record 11 Irish Champion Stakes, including each of the past four renewals. Ryan Moore has ridden the last two winners and will be on board the race favourite.

Aidan O'Brien has three runners confirmed for this year's renewal with Auguste Rodin joined by last year's winner, Luxembourg and the race's outsider, Point Lonsdale.

The Roger Varian-trained King Of Steel seems the biggest challenge to Auguste Rodin and may still go off as favourite. King Of Steel was a surprise second in the Betfred Derby at 66/1 but improved further to land the King Edward VII Stakes at Royal Ascot.

King Of Steel finished third as Auguste Rodin flopped last time out but was over four lengths adrift of leading pair, Hukum and Westover.

Alflaila Supplemented 

Alflaila offers arguably the best form in the race, albeit against far more modest opposition. The Owen Burrows-trained four-year-old has won four successive races but he's set to run in a Group 1 contest for the first time on Saturday. Solitary run in 2023 saw him land the Group 2 York Stakes ahead of My Prospero. Having been supplemented at a cost of €75,000, we're excited about his prospects.

One horse with plenty of Group 1 experience is Nashwa. John and Thady Gosden's four-year-old has contested three successive Group 1 contests, winning the Falmouth Stakes before going close in both the Nassau Stakes and Juddmonte International. Whilst the leading pair in the market have a lot of positives, Nashwa is arguably the safest bet on Saturday.

Frankie Dettori is enjoying an excellent final season before retirement and Saturday he'll be on board Onesto. Unlucky not to win this race twelve months ago, Onesto made a return to action in a one mile Group 1 contest in Deauville last month. Outpaced in a straight mile but should fare far better back over Saturday's trip. Shortlisted.

Al Riffa also returns to Ireland following an encouraging run at Deauville. The three-year-old won three times at 7f last year, including the Goffs Vincent O'Brien National Stakes at this meeting. He's enjoyed two runs over 1m2f this year and may be slipping under the radar ahead of Saturday.

Royal Bahrain Irish Champion Stakes Odds

  • 11/4: Auguste Rodin
  • 3/1: King Of Steel
  • 6/1: Alflaila, Nashwa
  • 7/1: Onesto, Al Riffa
  • 11/1: Luxembourg
  • 50/1: Sprewell
  • 100/1: Point Lonsdale

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