CHAMPIONS WEEKEND CURRAGH DAY TWO SUNDAY 15-9-2019
1.20 6f Irish Stallion Farms EBF “Bold Lad” Sprint Handicap (Premier Handicap) (3yo+)
A very competitive handicap to start the card and many of the followers of my previews will know that BLAIRMAYNE is an old favourite of mine and there is no reason why he won’t go very close here. He has won twice this season over the course and distance and his a sprinter who is at the top of his game. He has only been raised 2lb for his last win and that will leave him very competitive here. The ground wont be an issue and with luck in running he could give us a decent run.
1.55 1m2f Moyglare ”Jewels” Blandford Stakes (Group 2) (Fillies & Mares) (3yo+)
GODDESS who is a filly really on the improve and she could give the O’Brien team another big win after a fantastic day at Leopardstown on Saturday for them. She stayed on really well in the “Hurry Harriet” at Gowran Park and then improved again when winning the Snow Fairy at the Curragh last time out. Her stamina is a strong point in her make up and she could bring that into play tomorrow. A strong pace will play straight into her hands. A slight step up in trip should again be in her favour and she should prove very hard to beat.
2.25 5f Derrinstown Stud Flying Five Stakes (Group 1) (3yo+)
The former Australian trained flying sprinter HOUTZEN looks a very interesting runner here and she could be the value. She ran an absolute cracker when second to Battaash last time out in the Qatar Stakes at Goodwood and will need another bit of improvement to trouble some of the principals here. That was her second run since arriving from Australia and Martyn Meade could have got her back to peak fitness and the booking of Colin Keane is a very decent one indeed. Solid chance in a competitive race. Id expect her to go very close.
3.00 7f Moyglare Stud Stakes (Group 1) (Fillies) (2yo)
Aidan O Brien goes for a four pronged attack at this race and one of the likely outsiders of his battalion could be the value. SO WONDERFUL is a filly that I have been following this season and she is battled hardened but struggling to get her head in front in the bigger races. She is a maiden going into this race and while it may take a very good performance its not beyond the realms of possibility. She finished second to Cayenne Pepper at the Curragh last time out and for me she was given plenty to do and she took her time in doing it. She has seen the back of a Harrington filly a couple of times this season and while she might do again here she looks solid each way value to run her race.
3.35 7f Goffs Vincent O’Brien National Stakes (Group 1) (Entire Colts & Fillies) (2yo)
While this race centres on how good Pinatubo actually there could be value in the betting without market. GEOMETRICAL is a colt who produced a very good performance in Gowran Park to beat Mogul, and we seen yesterday that Mogul has stepped up twice since and franked the form. Mogul looks a work in progress but Geometrical looks like a horse who will need a step up in distance in time. He kept on well behind Armory last time in the Futurity and while this is a step up in class again it wouldn’t surprise me if he was the one to chase the favourite home.
4.10 1m6f Comer Group International Irish St. Leger (Group 1) (3yo+)
The long distance feature of the day and it looks a cracking race in prospect. Godolphin look to hold the ace in the pack here but the father and son duo of Aidan & Joseph O Brien have a decent chance to keep the prize on Irish soil. KEW GARDENS is one of those horses that I thought we would see a little bit more this season but he hasn’t been seen since his second to Defoe in the Coronation Cup at Epsom back in June. He won the St Leger at Doncaster last season and he was the sort of horse that I thought would contend most of the long distance cup races this year. He comes here a very fresh horse and that could be vital. He has the type of horse who could improve again this season. Will be very hard to beat here.
4.50 1m Pat Smullen Champions Race For Cancer Trials Ireland (3yo+)
With many of the legends in the saddle returning here for one race only for their colleague and good friend Pat Smullen this race looks one to enjoy and savour as Walsh v Mc Coy and Murtagh v Fallon renew rivalries. Ger Lyons set up a gofundme page to get Johnny Murtagh to ride for him and people were extremely generous as all monies donated would go to Cancer Trials Ireland. The have reached over 18.5k and that is extraordinary. RED STRIKER is a horse I think will give Johnny Murtagh a very good spin and could give Ger and Johnny the perfect result on what will be an emotional day. The horse finished third at Killarney last time out and that was a very good run with many of the horses in opposition that day have gone on to run well at Listowel during the week. He was formerly trained by Sir Michael Stoute and was very lightly raced. Solid each ay value here in a competitive race.
5.25 6½f (6f63y) Tattersalls Ireland Super Auction Sale Stakes (Plus 10 Race) (2yo)
These Sales races are very competitive and this race is no different. HAMISH MACBETH has done nothing but improve for UK trainer Hugo Palmer and this could be one race that goes across the water. He won nicely at Newmarket and Salisbury this season and with Ryan Moore booked, connections look like they fancy their chances of landing a decent pot. He is a progressive colt who has improved with racing and should he step up again it will take a decent performance to beat him. He showed an excellent turn of foot to win comfortably last time out and if he shows that turn of foot today he could win impressively here aswell. Big chance.
6.00 1m2f Irish Stallion Farms EBF “Northfields” Handicap (Premier Handicap) (3yo+)
A very competitive handicap to finish Champions weekend and there is plenty of value to be had. Joe Murphy has his team in flying form and INSIGNIA OF RANK could give him another big day here. If any of ye watched the Bar One sponsored coverage of Listowel Races on TG4, Joe Murphy mentioned that he was disappointed with the horses run behind Lancaster House but he said he is one to watch out for. The return to handicap company could give him the chane to get back to form and I would expect him to go close here. The last time this horse ran at the Curragh he was a winner and the return to the track here could be exactly what he needs. He is a nice double figure price and after the week we had in Listowel it would be a nice to finish on a high.