Strong hand should Enable John Gosden to land the Darley Irish Oaks
By Thom Malone
The Darley Irish Oaks is the second fillies’ classic of the Irish season and Enable is looking to become the first filly since Snow Fairy in 2010 to back up her Epsom victory with a win at The Curragh.
This daughter of Nathaniel looks to be improving and is a short price to give John Gosden his second Darley Irish Oaks and sixth Irish Classic success.
Enable is reported to be in good form, her trainer added, “We have freshened her up after the Oaks at Epsom and she is building up nicely for the Darley Irish Oaks”.
A single stable dominating the market ahead of an Irish Classic is nothing new. However this weekend it’s not Aidan O’Brien’s Ballydoyle team, but rather Gosden, whose Coronet looks the biggest danger to her stablemate.
Coronet broke many punters’ hearts by downing favourite Mori in the closing stages of the Ribblesdale at Royal Ascot last month (below) and has reportedly come out of that race well. The manner of her victory under Olivier Peslier suggests a step up in class at a galloping track will not be beyond her. Being by Dubawi, Darley’s marquee sire, a victory for Coronet would undoubtedly please the sponsors.
Aidan O’Brien will have several runners - Rain Goddess is shortest in the market after her second-place finish behind Nezwaah in the Pretty Polly. She was eye catching but was arguably just picking off beaten horses and didn’t trouble the winner in any way. Alluringly has been beaten twice by Enable and once by Coronet on her last three runs, the way she faded at Ascot would not fill her supporters with confidence.
Beyond those the only filly in the race with notable Group form is Intricately. She won the Group One Moyglare Stud Stakes at the track last year and steps up in trip to a mile and a half for the first time on Saturday.
Realistically making a case for any of the fillies in this race not trained by John Gosden would have even the O.J. Simpson defence team looking at their shoes and mumbling about full diaries and existing engagements. Check out all the prices with Ladbrokes here.
The Boodles Ladies’ Derby is the most valuable race for female jockeys in Europe. It follows the Darley Irish Oaks and Adrian Keatley’s Zeftan will be looking to add a second Ladies’ Derby to his roll of honour alongside the Apprentice Derby win earlier in the month. Elsewhere on a cracking card, in the Friarstown Stud Sapphire Stakes, Son of Rest makes an exciting step back into pattern company for Fozzy Stack.
Boodles generously sponsor the Ladies Derby and there is a prize worth €3000 to the winning rider. There also a chance for racegoers to get their hands on an incredible €5000 worth of Boodles jewellery with a VIP Champagne day in the store and a weekend at The Westbury. That’s all on offer for the Boodles most stylish Lady on the day.
A brilliant day of sport and style await at the Curragh on Saturday - for tickets and dining opportunities check out www.curragh.ie.