CURRAGH CLASSIC BATTLE OF THE SEXES: There are 16 left in but the Irish Derby at the Curragh on Saturday could be a match between filly and colt, Tuesday and Westover. Before the draw, three horses fully fit the ABC bill on form but there are doubts about Aidan O’Brien’s squad, with Stone Age likely to wait for the Eclipse and Changingoftheguard having run so close to the race, a winner at Royal Ascot last week.

TODAY: Three bets on Wednesday starting with a nap at Salisbury.


⭕ 3.45 The Curragh, Saturday (Irish Derby ABC guide)

A: Winning official-ratings 112-124
B: Has won a Group race
C: Won 1m 2f plus
D: Running within 36 days
F: Favourite: 16 out of 20 favourites placed
T: Trainer: Aidan O’Brien 14, Dermot Weld 3
X: Stalls: 1 to 5 win 80%


Colin Keane takes over on the Derby third, who stepped up at Epsom on his Sandown Classic Trial victory in April but was denied a clear run, galloping on strongly when finally in the clear but the winner, Desert Crown, had flown.


Impressive in the Leopardstown Derby Trial but probably beat nothing well. At Epsom, Stone Age and his Leopardstown runner-up, Glory Daze, finished 6th and 14th.

Was Stone Age uncomfortable on the track or was it that he didn’t get the trip? I think he is more likely to miss this race and run in the Eclipse.


An Oaks winner placed in two 1,000 Guineas, but Tuesday now has the same rating that Desert Crown had before he won the Derby. Also on 117 is Emily Upjohn, who was short-headed by Tuesday at Epsom after stumbling at the start. Third home, Nashwa, won the French Oaks on Sunday.

All that, and a 3lb allowance, puts Tuesday on a par with Westover for Saturday. The Oaks and Irish Derby double was last done by Balanchine (Saeed Bin Suroor) in 1994.


His only defeat in four starts this year is when wearing cheekpieces, fifth in the Epsom Derby. Either side of that he won the Chester Vase on soft ground and the King Edward V11 (‘Ascot Derby’) last week on firm. This comes quickly after Ascot and he must be considered a doubtful runner.


Futurity winner for Brian Meehan (Doncaster soft), his first run of the season, switched for 500,000gns to Joseph O’Brien, was when winning the Gallinule Stakes, Curragh, good to yielding, confirming his quality. See Anchorage.


Unlucky half-length defeat (‘bad interference’) by Duke Of Sessa, with Anchorage third, at Leopardstown in October. Improved on that to win the Ballysax in April; Buckaroo second and Duke De Sessa third. Disappointed in the Epsom Derby.


See Piz Badile.


Behind Duke De Sessa last season; well beaten in the Newmarket 2,000 Guineas, and third to Hannibal Barca in the Gallinule. See Vega Magnifico.


Twice adrift of Duke De Sessa as a 2yo; had that one behind when five-lengths runner-up to Stone Age in the Leopardstown Derby Trial.


Held in high regard; came to prominence when winning the final English Derby Trial, the Cocked Hat, at Goodwood on the soft. Galloping track at the Curragh will suit.


Third to Boundless Ocean at Leopardstown in April; broke his maiden in a Chester handicap in slow time on good to soft.


Group-3 third to Duke De Sessa as a 2yo; stepped up to win in fine style, before well-beaten third to Stone Age and Glory Daze in the Leopardstown Derby trial.


Impressive when breaking his maiden at Navan in May after fourth at Leopardstown behind Boundless Ocean, with Temple Of Artemis third.


Short-headed by Piz Badille in the Ballysax (Group 3) before easy winner of the (Listed) Tetrarch Stakes. Disappointing sixth in the Irish 2,000 Guineas, a couple of lengths behind Duke De Sessa.


Eighth to Piz Badille in the Ballysax; 6th to Stone Age in the Derby trial (led until two out).


Behind twice in races won by Duke De Sessa as a 2yo. Fifth, nearly five lengths off Hannibal Barca (Boundless Ocean third) in the Gallinule in May.


⭕ 3.45 Salisbury Shame to see the featured Bibury Cup that follows this race cut up to three runners and it now looks a coin flip between First Officer and Al Azhar.

The margins shouldn’t be as close here as Asaassi looks a solid bet to get off the mark on his third attempt.

Both his efforts at Kempton (narrow defeats) represent form strong enough to land this on his first run since wind surgery.

American Flag improved on first start to finish fourth to subsequent Royal Ascot winner Secret State but I’m not convinced about the step up in trip today.


⭕ 7.50 Kempton James Fanshawe likes to target this race and has had four from the last seven winners.

He has a fair chance of extending that domination with Jasmine Joy who is partnered by Benoit De La Sayette who is terrific current form himself with 7 winners from his last 26 rides.

We might not have seen the best of Jasmine Joy yet who is relatively lightly raced and should be better for her spin around Kempton last month (first start for 228 days) where she ran respectfully, despite being a beaten favourite.

The big danger to all is obviously the four-timer seeking Najeeba but this one has been noticeably weak in the early Betdaq Betting Exchange trading.

Hollie Doyle has partnered the Team Charlton trained filly in all three of her wins, the latest coming at Wolverhampton in April in a much weaker race than this when she was sent off long odds on.

This is tougher and she’s up another 7lb in the handicap so you can perhaps see why the layers are stepping in. The stable have also had their last five favourites beaten so there are plenty of reasons for giving this one the swerve.


⭕ 8.20 Kempton Whatever the fate of Najeeba and Hollie Doyle in the previous race, the pilot looks to have a big chance in the finale with Maridadi.

The Hughie Morrison trained bumper winner (Wetherby, 1m 4f) was no match for the runaway winner Emotion when she finished second here in May but is of much greater interest now in handicap company off what looks a very workable opening mark of just 64.

She is preferred to Riggbsy. Julie Camacho does well on her raiding missions here and whilst her runner tonight has won twice on the all-weather, both those successes have come on Tapeta rather than Polytrack which she doesn’t seem to enjoy as much.


3.45 Salisbury (win 10, nap)
BET 10.5pts win ASAASSI

7.50 Kempton (win 10)
BET 2.7pts win JASMINE JOY

8.20 Kempton (win 10)
BET 4.1pts win MARIDADI

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