Johnny Charron. Eyeing a second Grand Steeple

19 May 2023

Johnny Charron, partners Rosario Baron in Sunday's Grand Steeple de Paris

Winning the Grand Steeple-Chase de Paris last year with Sel Jem, at the age of 42, was the highlight of Johnny Charron’s career. On Sunday, he will be on Rosario Baron, winner of his last three, including the important Prix Troytown in March.

A year on and Charron reflects on the importance his family played in his career. “The moral support I received from my mother and sisters was beneficial, and still is. I wouldn’t be where I am without them.

My parents built their own house with a big, very big garden. It was then that my father bought some ponies. Needless to say, I rode them…and it all began there! It wasn’t long before I was riding in pony races.

It was not long either before Charron found himself carrying out his apprenticeship with Etienne Leenders. After four years, it was time to turn professional, but the initial period was not easy. With only a handful of winners came doubt, but the confidence of a trainer could change all that. After having worked for a number of handlers, it was Philippe Peltier and Guillaume Macaire who had a particular impact on his career.

With Peltier, Charron won, among others, the Grand Steeple d’Enghien and the Prix Léopold d’Orsetti with Miss De Champdoux. Now in Royan, he has found a new mentor in Macaire.

Sharing much in common, “We see horses in the same way. We communicate well, and spend a lot of time in discussion. Working with him is a joy.” Of course, Hector de Lageneste is the other half of the training duo responsible for Charron’s big success. In 2022, Sel Jem won the Prix Troytown before landing the Grand Steeple. Perhaps Rosario Baron’s March victory can be seen as a good omen for Sunday’s feature?


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