Guineas Weekend At Curragh

First is off at 14h20

The Curragh racecourse hosts the Tattersalls Irish Guineas Festival over the weekend with the Irish 2,000 Guineas today and the fillies equivalent,  the Irish 1,000 Guineas on Sunday.

Track conditions, after watering by the clerk of the course, are posted as good.

A field of eleven colts compete for glory and the €285,000 first prize in the Gr1 Tattersalls Irish 2,000 Guineas (16h40).

The prospect of a second British-trained winner of Ireland’s opening Classic race in as many years is enhanced by the presence of the placed runners from the 2,000 Guineas at Newmarket.

2,000 Guineas runner-up Hi Royal, trained by Kevin Ryan, chased home Chaldean with those closest behind him, Royal Scotsman and Galeron also bound for the Curragh.

Hi Royal will once again be ridden by former British champion jockey Oisin Murphy, and this lighted-raced son of Kodiac would have finished closer to Chaldean had he not hung across the track over the final half furlong. Murphy will know a lot more about his ride now and with faster ground another positive, he sets the standard.

Aidan O’Brien can never be ignored, and he fields three in the feature with the Ryan Moore ridden Paddington the most fancied of the trio.

Ryan Moore rides Paddington (Pic – Chase Liebenberg)

A course and distance winner, he is open to any amount of progress after his listed course and distance win here earlier this month. However, his three victories have been on soft to heavy ground, so this quicker ground is an unknown.

A bigger threat to Hi Royal is the supplemented Royal Scotsman from the Cole yard. Only half a length behind the selection at Newmarket, where he over-raced and was hampered in-running, he must be considered. Jamie Spencer now rides as Jim Crowley is committed to ride at York.

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