The Irish St. Leger - Your #1 Guide

The Irish St. Leger is the last leg of the Irish Triple Crown series preceded by the Irish 2,000 Guineas and the Irish Derby. As the series finale, the St. Leger takes place in September during the Irish Champions Weekend at Curragh.

A Breakdown of
the Race

The Irish St. Leger is a group one event styled after the British Classic it is named for covering a mile and six furlongs of the right-handed Curragh Racecourse, where the races Irish Derby and Irish Oaks also take place. Unlike its English counterpart, which restricts the age to three, the Irish St. Leger is open to horses aged three or older. The weight requirement differs based on age and gender. For three-year-olds, males are required to carry 9st-1lb and females 8st-12lbs. Four-year-olds carry 9st-10lbs and 9st-7lbs respectively.

fact file

location: Curragh Racecourse

grade: Group 1

race type: Flat

History and Past Champions of the Irish St. Leger

This race was established in 1915 and is an important finale to the Irish Triple Crown series. It is also the last of five Irish Classic races held each season. Originally, the age requirement was restricted to three-year-olds in much the same way as its English counterpart. However, it has been open to older horses since 1983 giving competitors the chance to win more than once.

With a purse of €500,000 (as of 2017), the Irish St. Leger isn't the richest race of the Irish Triple Crown series, but it is by far the most grueling. The distance of one mile and six furlongs tests the high profile contenders' limits like no other Irish Triple Crown meeting.

Records

Have a look at the records of the race (as of 2017). The fact that many of these records remain intact, despite being set decades ago, is a testament to the intense difficulty of the Irish St. Leger.

  • The most successful horse is the outstanding Vinnie Roe with four consecutive wins from 2001 to 2004.

  • The leading trainer is legend Vincent O'Brien who produced nine winners from 1959 to 1988.

  • The leading trainer is legend Vincent O'Brien who produced nine winners from 1959 to 1988.

  • The honour roll for repeat winners includes Vintage Crop (1993, 1994), Oscar Schindler (1996, 1997), Kayf Tara (1998, 1999), Vinnie Roe (2001-2004) and Order Of St. George (2015, 2017).

Best Moments

Below are a few of the best moments in history of the Irish St. Leger (as of 2017).

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  • Each year a competitor wins the Irish Triple Crown series is a momentous occasion in the history of this race. To date, only two have managed to do so. The first was Museum in 1935, followed shortly after by Windsor Slipper in 1942.

  • The 2011 race resulted in a dead heat between Duncan and Jukebox making for a historic occasion as the first and only dead heat in the history of the race.

  • Since 1915, only three horses have won both the English and Irish St. Leger Stakes races. The first was Royal Lancer in 1922, followed by Trigo in 1929, and finally Touching Wood in 1982.