Malabar to give Channon a second Irish Guineas

TOP CLASS flat action takes place across the Irish Sea this weekend, with three Group One contests at the Curragh.

I’d expect Gleneagles to double-up on his Classic success at Newmarket with a win in tomorrow’s Irish 2,000 Guineas at the Curragh (3.20pm). However, he is 2/5 with Betway and I’m happy to sit the race out.

On Sunday, plenty of promising fillies battle it out in the Irish 1,000 Guineas (3.55pm). Aidan O’Brien is seeking a seventh win in the race and saddles the field’s highest rated filly, Found.

She left favourite backers with burnt fingers on her seasonal reappearance at the beginning of the month but, like many of O’Brien’s team, is expected to come on for the run. Again though, she is just 9/4 and I’d rather look for better value.

MALABAR is the filly that I’ll be backing at 11/1 with Betway, therefore. Trainer Mick Channon regards this daughter of Raven’s Pass as one of the best he’s ever trained and he won this race in 2012 with Samitar.

Malabar didn’t disappoint when finishing fourth in the QIPCO 1,000 Guineas at Newmarket ahead of some very good fillies. Irish Rookie, sixth that day, went on to claim second in the French version earlier this month.

The Curragh’s stiff mile will suit a sure-staying filly and she will appreciate a little bit of dig in the ground.

In the preceding race Al Kazeem will be reunited with James Doyle in a bid to regain the Group One Tattersalls Gold Cup (3.20pm). However, he’s not getting any younger and I’d expect others to be hot on his heels.

THE GREY GATSBY is the one for me. If this horse was handled by an O’Brien, Stoute or Gosden he’d be much shorter in the market. Kevin Ryan’s colt is the highest-rated horse across the UK and Ireland and should be too good for his opposition on Sunday.

Sandown Park stages its Cantor Fitzgerald Brigadier Gerard Evening next Thursday and City AM readers can get two tickets for the price of one. Tickets are normally £18 so they will be just £9 if you use the promo code CITYAM241 when booking online at www.sandown.co.uk.

▪ Pointers…
THE GREY GATSBY 3.20pm Curragh (Sunday)
MALABAR e/w 3.55pm Curragh (Sunday)