Ryan Moore confident Luxembourg can challenge Vadeni in Irish Champion Stakes

Ryan Moore believes Vadeni has every right to be favourite for the Royal Bahrain Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown, but expects his mount Luxembourg to improve leaps and bounds.

A Group One winner at two, Luxembourg ran a race full of promise when third in the 2000 Guineas at Newmarket but picked up a problem which kept him off the track for over three months.

While he returned with a victory in the Royal Whip Stakes, he only scrambled home by a neck from Insinuendo but Moore expects him to prove a different proposition this weekend.

"Obviously it hasn't been a straightforward year for him. He had a lovely two-year-old career, a very good run in the Guineas but unfortunately he wasn't right after that race," said Moore, on a call hosted by Horse Racing Ireland.

"He needed his run at the Curragh last month and he got the job done. We'd be hopeful he can come forward from that run. A mile and a quarter at Leopardstown, with rain around which shouldn't be a problem, should suit."

Looking towards the opposition, Moore pointed to the Eclipse winner, Jean-Claude Rouget's Vadeni, as the main challenger.

"Vadeni has clearly improved from the French Debry to beat the older horses in the Eclipse and he's probably entitled to be favourite. Maybe Mishriff was a little unfortunate that day but he's still open to improvement," he said.

"Obviously Jean-Claude Rouget has an excellent record in the race and he likes to target it. It's always a good race."

The other Group One on Saturday is the Coolmore America 'Justify' Matron Stakes with Moore set to ride Tenebrism against the likes of Homeless Songs and Saffron Beach.

"She's still a three-year-old filly, still getting better so I'm sure she'll run a good race. A mile around a bend might suit her better, that's what we'd be hoping. She was still a little bit green when she went to Ascot but the last day (when second to Saffron Beach at Deauville) didn't quite go as smoothly as I would have liked," said Moore.

On Sunday at the Curragh, Moore can look forward to the likes of Kyprios in the Comer Group International Irish St Leger and Meditate in the Moyglare Stud Stakes, while the unbeaten Aesop's Fables looks a likely type in the Goffs Vincent O'Brien National Stakes.

"Aesop's Fables is one I've always liked. He started off early at Navan, he won comfortably but unfortunately he had a minor setback and we couldn't get a run into him before the Futurity," said Moore, who divides his time between Britain and Ireland, as well as riding in France and America regularly.

"I think the whole weekend is great racing, it's in a really nice place in the calendar. I'm lucky to be a part of it, hopefully it will get stronger.

"I'm very lucky to ride for Aidan. Aidan says it himself, it's the whole team at Coolmore and Ballydoyle that make the whole thing possible. It's the hard work of everyone involved in the operation that makes the success possible.

"They have great owners who put a lot of time, money and effort into it and it's a privilege to ride for them for quite a few years now. I'm very thankful for the opportunity they've given me.

"A lot of people help me to make things as easy as they can, booking flights and moving things around, which takes a lot of pressure off me. They get stressed from time to time working out if things are possible, but it's part of the job.

"With every job there are things that aren't easy, but we try to be sensible. I don't mind a few long nights and early mornings, it has to be done sometimes."

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