With the 2,000 Guineas kicking off the Irish Classics on Saturday, the 1,000 Guineas follows almost immediately after on Sunday with fourteen top-class fillies aiming for victory at the Curragh.
Joseph O’Brien’s PRETTY GORGEOUS (2/1) heads the betting, with her form as a two-year-old producing a compelling case.
The filly landed some black type with a convincing performance in the Debutante Stakes, pushing clear of rival Shale to win by two and a half lengths.
She claimed Group 1 honours on her last outing back in October, travelling incredibly well and finding just enough in the final stages to claim victory in the Fillies’ Mile by half a length.
The daughter of Lawman has shown a preference for tougher conditions and she could well relish the heavy ground at the Curragh.
Stablemates SENSE OF STYLE (20/1) and THINKING OF YOU (25/1) holds an entry for Joseph O’Brien as well, as the latter making the step up in class after finishing third in the Irish 1,000 Guineas Trial at the beginning of the month.
The winner of that trial JOAN OF ARC (5/2) makes her first start in Group 1 company and carries form on several ground types.
Aidan O’Brien’s filly claimed a 7f maiden on soft to heavy ground at the Curragh back in March and also won over a mile at Leopardstown earlier this month on good ground.
The daughter of Galileo is a sister to three Group 1 winners and she should show further improvement here.
The Ballydoyle trainer has two more entries in EMPRESS JOSEPHINE (16/1) and FRIENDLY (100/1), both aiming to land their first success in Group company.
Richard Fahey’s FEV ROVER (9/2) carries some useful form into the contest, including a third-place finish in the British renewal of the contest three weeks previously.
The daughter of Gutaifan landed his only Group success abroad, winning the Prix Du Calvados on very soft ground at Deauville.
The three-year-old could produce a big performance in the tougher conditions and could well be one to watch here.
Jessica Harrington’s NO SPEAK ALEXANDER (10/1) will want to follow up her Athasi Stakes victory with success here and is joined by stable companion ZAFFY’S PRIDE (20/1) who finished second in the same contest.
MISS AMULET (8/1) makes her first start since making the trip across the Atlantic to compete in the Breeders’ Cup for Ken Conlon, while Paddy Twomey’s FANTASY LADY (20/1) may want further in time after finishing fifth in the Irish 1,000 Guineas Trial.
Sheila Lavery’s BELLE IMAGE (66/1), John Joseph Murphy’s SWEET GARDENIA (66/1) and David Bergin’s SZIGET (100/1) complete the field of 14 runners.
An intriguing renewal of the Irish 1,000 Guineas lies in wait at the Curragh, with the heavy ground likely to play a major part in the outcome of the contest.
– Fev Rover @ 9/2
– Thinking Of You E/W @ 25/1