Saturday preview

'Ryan Was Very Impressed': O'Brien Champions Content Ahead Of Irish Oaks Quandry

In the absence of Ezeliya (Fr) (Dubawi {Ire}), Saturday's G1 Juddmonte Irish Oaks already had an open feel before Ryan Moore decided to give up the ride on the winner of one of this Classic's key pointers in Port Fairy (Ire) (Australia {GB}). Two of the last five Irish Oaks heroines had captured the G2 Ribblesdale Stakes en route, so the rejection of such a promising and unexposed winner of that Royal Ascot feature can only point to the strong claims of his pick from the Ballydoyle trio. Much more...

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Can Inisherin Pass the July Test?

After Sheikh Mohammed Obaid Al Maktoum's Inisherin (GB) (Shamardal) had crossed the line in Royal Ascot's G1 Commonwealth Cup, all logic pointed to Newmarket and Saturday's G1 My Pension Expert July Cup. Imperious there, as he had been in Haydock's G2 Sandy Lane Stakes the previous month, Kevin Ryan's latest sprinting luminary is unbeaten over this six-furlong trip and open to abundant improvement from a family which breeds class acts at a ridiculous rate. Whatever his obvious merits, the fact is that with the ground drying out by the hour...

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Is Rosallion The Answer In The Guineas?

Logic dictates that the G1 2,000 Guineas is the standard when it comes to assessing the form of the G1 Irish 2,000 Guineas, so in all likelihood the case for Sheikh Mohammed Obaid Al Maktoum's Newmarket runner-up Rosallion (Ire) (Blue Point {Ire}) is an open-and-shut one. The odds and all the noise from the Richard Hannon yard certainly suggest so, but this is The Curragh we are talking about and Saturday's Tattersalls-sponsored renewal will not be done and dusted until Sean Levey gets past seven peers and to the line....

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Back In The Big Time

Saturday sees the return of the sensational G1 Queen Elizabeth II S. winner Big Rock (Fr) (Rock Of Gibraltar {Ire}) in Newbury's G1 Al Shaqab Lockinge S., where it is a case of in at the deep end for the trainer if not for the colt in question. While Yeguada Centurion's 4-year-old has obviously been there and has the t-shirt, new handler Maurizio Guarnieri is in maiden territory with the powerhouse who so memorably destroyed the subsequent G1 Dubai Turf winner Facteur Cheval (Ire) (Ribchester {Ire}) by six lengths on...

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Doncaster: St Leger Holding Out For A Hero

   It would be brave to call the winner of Saturday's G1 Betfred St Leger and at this stage difficult to even decide what will start favourite for a wide-open renewal of the Doncaster Classic. There is very little separating the obvious trio of Continuous (Jpn) (Heart's Cry {Jpn}), Arrest (Ire) (Frankel {GB}) and Gregory (GB) (Golden Horn {GB}), while even Desert Hero (GB) (Sea The Stars {Ire}) could yet threaten for pole position in the market given his Royal status. Each one has yet to prove themselves at this...

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Goodwood: All Boxes Ticked For Free Wind In The Lillie Langtry

Saturday's closing card of the Qatar Goodwood Festival sees the focus fall on one of Britain's most prestigious handicaps in the Stewards' Cup, with just the one pattern race being the G2 Qatar Lillie Langtry S. George Strawbridge's Free Wind (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}), who met with a reversal for the first time in two years when fifth in the G2 Hardwicke S. at Royal Ascot, lost nothing in defeat there when fifth from a compromising position on too-fast ground. The G2 Park Hill S., G2 Lancashire Oaks and G2 Middleton...

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The Curragh: Irish Oaks Compensation For Savethelastdance?

For many, there was an element of surprise in the failure of Chester sensation Savethelastdance (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) to conquer her Oaks rivals and Saturday's G1 Juddmonte Irish Oaks offers the opportunity for the Ballydoyle starlet to put herself back in the spotlight. Streaking up the short Roodeye straight to wrap up a 22-length annihilation of the Listed Cheshire Oaks on a dour day at the May Festival, the daughter of Daddys Lil Darling (Scat Daddy) appeared lost in the more familiar summer sun as she floundered at Epsom three...

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Saturday Preview: Rubber Match in the Alabama

There is plenty to play for in Saturday's 142nd running of the $600,000 GI Alabama S. at Saratoga, where Nest (Curlin) and Secret Oath (Arrogate) face one another for the third time head-to-head--each with one victory to their credit--with divisional supremacy awaiting the winner. An 8 1/4-length tour-de-force tally in Keeneland's GI Central Bank Ashland S. accorded Nest the role of favoritism in the GI Longines Kentucky Oaks, but she was no match for the somewhat forgotten Secret Oath, dropping a two-length decision. A meritorious second to stablemate Mo Donegal...

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Trail Leads Back To The Curragh

The emphasis is on speed on Saturday, with a quartet of Europe's six pattern races being sprints and only one taking place beyond a mile. Glinting in the midst of them is the jewel that is the first of the Curragh's 2022 Classics, the €500,000 G1 Tattersalls Irish 2000 Guineas. With a distinct form edge, it seems on paper to be simply be a case of going through the motions for Native Trail (GB) (Oasis Dream {GB}) with Godolphin's Guineas treble hanging tantalisingly within reach. However, this is a tough...

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