Qipco 2000 Guineas: Ryan Moore says Auguste Rodin could prove ‘special’ in Classics to come

Ryan Moore has high hopes of Qipco 2000 Guineas and Betfred Derby favorite Auguste Rodin will go on and prove himself as a “special” horse.

Since finishing second on his debut, the Deep Impact colt won his maiden before taking a Group Two on Irish Champions Weekend and signing off for the season in the Vertem Futurity Trophy at Doncaster.

“He’s obviously a very exciting horse, he should be unbeaten but we missed the first day. Apart from that, he’s done everything right, every start and the Vertem Futurity wasn’t a straightforward race, but he did everything right and showed a good attitude,” said Moore on the Betfair Betting Podcast.

Auguste Rodin is ante-post favorite for the Derby at Epsom next year
Auguste Rodin is ante-post favorite for the Derby at Epsom

“I think he beat a fair horse, the horse of (John and Thady) the Gosdens (Epictetus) and I think he’s going to be a better horse this year again. Obviously, he’s by Deep Impact out of Rhododendron.

“He ticks all the boxes, he’s a real good moving horse and has a beautiful rhythm. So we’re looking forward to this season.”

Despite being as low as 5-2 for the Guineas, Moore and trainer Aidan O’Brien have always viewed him as more of a Derby type.

“We always thought that’s what he was, he got an awful lot of class and hopefully he’s a special horse,” said Moore.

“I don’t think he’s going to struggle for pace [in the Guineas]. He’s got plenty of speed, his dam won’t be Lockinge. There’s plenty of pace there. He’s moving beautifully at the moment and seems to be in a good place.”

Auguste Rodin (green cap) leads the Aidan O'Brien string in a workout at the Curragh
Auguste Rodin (green cap) leads the Aidan O’Brien string in a workout at the Curragh, including Little Big Bear

Second-favorite for the Guineas is stablemate Little Big Bear, who has not run since a setback prevented him from building on his stunning seven-length Phoenix Stakes win over six furlongs.

“When he got into top gear and he opened up in the last furlong there, he was very impressive and ran through the line. You know, his last furlong was his best furlong,” said Moore.

“All he’s done is finish off his race well, he’s a very exciting horse. By No Nay Never out of a Bering mare. He’s one that we’re very much looking forward to and he could be a very good miler, but we’ I’ll see as we haven’t asked him a serious question yet.”

Regarding the trip, Moore said: “You never know until you try, but he’ll give himself every opportunity. He does everything right, he’s got a super attitude and the way he ran through the line at the Curragh, you’d like to think that a mile should be within range.”