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Parade of Champions at the Curragh

Top quality racing as part of Champions weekend will be experienced at the Curragh tomorrow, but there will also be an opportunity to meet 8 horses that have been champions for their owners and are held in the affection of many.  Treo Eile are very pleased to be assisting with the organisation of the parade and would like to thank Moyglare Stud Farm for sponsoring the event.

The parade includes Flat and National Hunt Group/Graded winners in Ireland, England and France, with history makers at Royal Ascot, Cheltenham and Aintree.

After the first race ALFREDO ARCANO, ROYAL DIAMOND, SEA THE LION and HURRICANE FLY will parade, and this will be followed by DOUVAN, GENERAL PRINCIPLE, ONE FOR ARTHUR and TIGER ROLL parading after the second race.

Through Treo Eile’s work it is very positive to see an increase of thoroughbreds in their second career and the parading horses continue to have a wonderful life since retiring from the track.

 

Alfredo Arcano (IRE)

While Alfredo Arcano won a handicap here at the Curragh, the David Marnane trained gelding became better known as an all-weather specialist.  The now 8-year-old, won or was placed 18 times from his 32 runs at Dundalk, with his best rating being 105.  He has won over 5, 6 and 7 furlongs and accumulated over €152,000 for owners Laurence O’Kane and Melanie Marnane.

Alfredo Arcano’s last race was in June of 2021 and through Treo Eile, he started his retraining for a showing career with Lindsay Carthy in April 2022.

 

Royal Diamond (IRE)

Royal Diamond was bred by Moyglare Stud Farm Ltd and sold at the 2007 Goffs Million yearling sale for €70,000 to Sir Mark Prescot.  He was a 4-time winner for the Newmarket handler and was placed over hurdles for John Joe O’Neill, before his journey took him to Tommy Carmondy on the Curragh in March 2012.  That season he was placed in the Ulster Derby and the Ebor at York.  He rounded it off by winning the Gr1 Irish St Leger here at the Curragh.

2013 saw Royal Diamond move to Johnny Murtagh’s care where he continued to show his ability in group company over 1m 4f – 1m 6f.  He won the St Leger Trial Stakes (Gr3) here at the Curragh and the Listed Challenge Stakes at Leopardstown, before travelling to Ascot to win the British Champions Long Distance Cup over 2m – partnered on this occasion by his trainer.

Royal Diamond’s last race was in June 2014 and he is now educating our future jockeys at RACE, where he heads the panel of ex-racehorses.

 

Sea The Lion (IRE)

Sea The Lion won his maiden here at the Curragh as a 3-year-old, when trained by Michael Halford for owner/breeder John Connaughton.  A break as a result of an injury did not hinder his enthusiasm for racing, returning to the track in 2017 with placings and two wins for Jarlath Fahey – which included the ‘Ragusa’ Premier Handicap, here at the Curragh.

2018 saw the son of Sea The Stars in the winner’s enclosure 3 times which included the Cork Derby and the back-to-back ‘Ragusa’ Premier Handicap.  He also was placed in the Ebor at York for local owners Kathleen Whelan and Suzanne Fahey.  A gallant performance saw Sea The Lion beaten by a neck when returning to contest the ‘Ragusa’ Premier Handicap for a third time in 2019.

His last race was in August 2020 and he joined Fiona Wentges in March 2022 to commence a showing career.

 

Hurricane Fly (IRE)

Foaled at the Irish National Stud and bred to race on the flat, Hurricane Fly commenced his racing in France, where he won an 1m listed race and he was 4th in a 1m 1f Group 3 contest.

In March 2008 he was returned in training with Willie Mullins, and commenced a career that would see the son of Montjeu win 24 of his 32 races over hurdles – astonishingly 22 of these wins were at Grade One level.  He holds the world record for the most Grade 1 victories.

He made the Irish Champion Hurdle his own, winning it 5 times from 2011 to 2015.  In 2011 and 2013 Hurricane Fly and Ruby Walsh romped up the Cheltenham hill to win the Champion Hurdle and, in both years, he returned to the Punchestown Festival to win the Rabobank Champion Hurdle, a race he won in total 4 times.

In August 2015, Willie Mullins called him the ‘horse of a generation’ when announcing his retirement as an 11-year-old.  Fortunately for his adoring fans, Hurricane Fly returned to the Irish National Stud to join the Living Legends team in their retirement.

 

Douvan (FR)

A win and placing over hurdles in France as a 4-year-old was the starting point for Douvan, before continuing his career with Willie Mullins from November 2014.  This was a racing career that saw Douvan unbeaten from his first run for the Closutton trainer on 22 November 2014 to February 2017.  Incorporating 14 wins over hurdles and fences, this feat included eight Grade 1 races and three Grade 2 races.  Douvan was cheered into the Cheltenham winner’s enclosure for the 2015 Sky Bet Supreme Novices’ Hurdle Gr1 and the 2016 Racing Post Arkle Challenge Trophy Chase Gr1, with a win also at Aintree in the Doom Bar Maghull Novice Chase Gr1 in 2016.  On home soil, Douvan added Grade 1 wins in the Champion Novice Hurdle and Ryanair Novice Chase in Punchestown, while at Leopardstown his name is on the Racing Post Novice Chase, the Arkle Novice Chase and the Paddy Power Chase.

Douvan last raced in November 2019 and he is presently enjoying a showing career with Clare Ricketts in Carlow.  He stood 4th in the Racehorse to Riding Horse class at this year’s Dublin Horse Show.

 

General Principle (IRE)

Following a point-to-point win as a 5-year-old, General Principle join Gordon Elliott and won his first bumper outing by 22 lengths.  He won and was placed over hurdles before being caught on the line in his opening outings over fences.  A win at Gowran Park was quickly followed by winning the Hugh McMahon Memorial Novice Chase Gr3, at Limerick.   General Principle got his first taste of the Irish Grand National at Fairyhouse when finishing 5th in 2017, but came out twelve months later to win this 3m 5f contest by a head from Isleofhopendreams.

General Principle last raced in November 2020.  The gelding is now with Seanin Mahon who looked after him when in training and the combination won the Racehorse to Riding Horse class at this year’s Dublin Horse Show.

 

One For Arthur (IRE)

Like many top chasers, One For Arthur won and was placed in the point-to-point field.  He had three wins in his hurdling career and was only once out of the placings in seven runs over the smaller obstacles.

One For Arthur made a winning debut over fences for trainer Lucinda Russell and in total won 4 chases.  2017 saw the gelding win the Betfred Classic Handicap Chase Gr3 as a prep race for the Grand National.  April 8th, 2017 saw One For Arthur overtake the favourite approaching the final obstacle and staying on up the run-in to win the Randox Health Grand National by four and a half lengths from Cause of Causes.  A re-visit to Aintree for the iconic race in 2019, resulted in a gallant 6th to Tiger Roll.

One For Arthur’s last race was in February 2020 and he returned to his breeder John Dwan in May 2022 for his daughter Aisling to ride. The partnership has been successful in showing classes and partake in Pony Club activities.

 

Tiger Roll (IRE)

After winning a hurdle race for Nigel Hawkes, Tiger Roll joined Gordon Elliott in January 2014.  He won four times over hurdles which included the Triumph Hurdle Gr 1 at Cheltenham, but it was not until he took to fences that he came into his own.  Tiger Roll won two novice chases before winning the 2016 Munster National and Lisa O’Neill partnered him to win the 2017 Cheltenham National Hunt Challenge Cup Amateur Riders’ Novices’ Chase Gr2.

The little bay won the hearts of the public when he won back-to-back Randox Health Grand Nationals at Aintree in 2018 and 2019 under Davy Russell.   He had the ability to adapt to different obstacles and he put his stamp on the Cheltenham Cross Country race, by winning it three times in 2018, 2019 and 2021 and placed second twice, once in 2020 and on his final outing in March 2022.

This summer Tiger Roll’s adaptability came to the fore again as the gelding and Ted O’Leary won in the show ring and stood third in the Racehorse to Riding Horse class at the Dublin Horse Show.

(Ted (son of Eddie and Wendy O’Leary) was a member of the Irish Bronze medal team at the European Pony Eventing Championships in 2021 and he was a member of the Irish Silver medal team at the 2022 European Junior eventing Championships)

 

 

 

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