TWO NAPS UP AT 5-1 AND 4-1: After a 5-1 winning nap on Thursday, Shamrock served up another ace yesterday when his best bet at the Curragh was Sportsmaster (WON 4-1).
32-1 IN DAQ MULTIPLES SEQUENCE: He slammed in a 32-1 double at Tipperary on Thursday – Adiynara (WON 5-1) and Jamesie (WON 9-2) – following six doubles and a treble last week, when he landed four naps.
30-1 DOUBLE BID TODAY: After a downpour at The Curragh, leading to the Pretty Polly withdrawal of Snow Fairy, Shamrock has two soft-ground lovers lined up for a 30-1 double.
There’s no Fairytale in the rain today. The English and Irish Oaks winner has been withdrawn after heavy downpours. That seems to leave a Pretty Polly match between Midday and Misty For Me at The Curragh this afternoon.
The first three races are for two-year-olds: I can judge them only on their fast-ground form but be warned that the change of going, possibly to soft-heavy, could see known form torn up. Best to watch the horses go down and see their action, get some idea if they can cope with the mud.
2.0 The Curragh This is one of the big Ballydoyle launchpads, with Roderic O’Connor, Rip Van Winkle and Duke Of Marmalade among Aidan O’Brien’s five winners in the last eight seasons.
And the grapevine this morning says Among Equals will be the latest O’Brien star to be born on this track today. The Oasis Dream colt has stormed to the front of the market, with Afraz seen as the likely threat.
But, though they are legitimate in lower class, I can’t fancy a horse to have Pattern pretensions in blinkers, as Afraz wears second time on the track.
2.30 The Curragh O’Brien goes for a hat-trick in this and again, it seems, punters can be trusted to get it right, since there has never been a losing favourite in this race.
But it’s not Ballydoyle they want this morning; instead they are banking on Moone shine and Jessica Harrington with Princess Sinead.
She will certainly take some stopping after running up to Maybe, the subsequent Chesham heroine and already favourite for the 2012 fillies’ Guineas at Newmarket.
Princess Sinead has also run second to Teolane, whose sire, Teofilo, is represented here by Rigoletta.
The Galileo fillies Oh Happy Days (David Wachman) and Soon (O’Brien) make up a fair party of future Paddocks babes, with Sinead seemingly the princess at this stage of their development.
3.00 The Curragh Kevin Prendergast is two out of three in this race, which has another fine set of fillies. Much as I respect his Aaraas, I fancy the David Wachman runner, Experience by name and, in fact, by virtue of her narrow defeat by Somasach.
That was over 5f on the sharp Tipperary track and she ran on, and almost caught the subsequent Queen Mary runner, as if today’s 6f was already needed.
3.35 The Curragh (Pretty Polly Stakes) Older fillies and mares are 7-3 up over the three-year-olds and the English are five out of nine but Misty For Me is the official top rating and it was Aidan O’Brien who last won it for second-season fillies with Peeping Fawn.
Midday has won the Nassau and the Vermeille on soft ground among five Group-1s but has to give away 12lb to a home filly here, with a 1,000 Guineas to her name.
And I shall not forget seeing Misty For Me pulverize the French in very soft terrain at Longchamp for the two-year-old championship Marcel Boussac (fillies’ Criterium) last autumn.
She didn’t seem to get the trip, or was it that she didn’t act on the peculiar Epsom track, in the English Oaks but at 3.72 Misty (and 1.29 the favourite), there is no value in Midday.
Having taken my naps to value heights, with 4-1 and 5-1 in the last couple of days, and since I can’t rely on the two-year-olds to show their firm-ground on the soft, I shall stand and be counted for an Irish victory in the big race here, as I try to maintain the odds-against sequence.
4.10 The Curragh (Curragh Cup) At last a colt and a gelding, after four races on the trot for fillies. This time, three-year-olds are rarely good enough (just one win this century); 1m 6f is a long, long way at this stage of their careers, and Admiral Of the Red is very short on experience.
Nebula Storm may take some catching but he was caught sure enough on firm ground in a Leopardstown Listed and the mud may stop him. I’m taking my cue from way back in history and I’m going to bet that it’s right because Betdaq offers me tremendous value if I go for it.
I’m reading a race at Doncaster on soft ground in August, 2009. It is won by Red Cadeaux ‘with the emphasis on stamina’. Fifth beaten nearly 10 lengths was Times Up ‘reported to be unsuited by the ground.’
Yet here we are on the soft with Times Up 2.73 this morning and Red Cadeaux 8.0. A lot of water has passed under the bridge since August, 2009, but a lot of water has fallen on The Curragh and I know how I’m going to bet.
At 3.72 Misty For Me and 8.0 Red Cadeaux, I’m looking for another big double, potentially around 30-1.
NAP: Misty For Me (3.35 The Curragh)
NEXT BEST: Red Cadeaux (4.10 The Curragh)
DAQ MULTIPLES: Among Equals (2.00 The Curragh), Princess Sinead (2.30 The Curragh), Experience (3.00 The Curragh), Misty For Me (3.35 The Curragh) and Red Cadeaux (4.10 The Curragh)