There is some fantastic racing in Ireland this weekend and the highlight is undoubtedly tomorrow evening’s 150th renewal of the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby (6.30pm).
This race has been dominated by Aidan O’Brien over the past decade. He has won the race an astonishing eight times in the last nine years and 10 times in the past 14.
You have to go all the way back to 1993 to find the last British winner when Sir Henry Cecil’s Commander In Chief followed up his Epsom success.
That long wait could be about to end as John Gosden’s Jack Hobbs is surely going to take all the beating after his excellent second to stablemate Golden Horn in the Investec Derby earlier this month.
The problem is that he’s a 4/6 shot with Betway and I’m certainly not going to be backing him at that price.
Highland Reel has been well supported after his excellent second in the French Derby, but he isn’t guaranteed to stay this trip and I really can’t look past Jack Hobbs.
The best option is to save your money for Sunday as Investec Oaks runner-up LEGATISSIMO has a huge chance in the Sea The Stars Pretty Polly Stakes (4.30pm).
David Wachman’s daughter of Danehill Dancer has been a revelation this season. She was a mightily impressive winner of the 1,000 Guineas and was then heartbreakingly reeled in right on the line by Qualify in the Oaks.
She didn’t quite stay the 1m4f trip, so this drop back to 10 furlongs is perfect for her. She also has absolutely no worries about the likely quick ground, while plenty of her potential rivals are better with some give underfoot.
Those looking to oppose her at the general 7/4 mark will point to the fact that only two of the past 10 winners were three-year-olds.
However, not many of the best fillies from the Classic generation have targeted this race in recent years, as they have tended to wait for the Irish Oaks.
The three-year-olds get a huge weight allowance and I simply can’t look past Legatissimo, who can get back on the winning trail.
LEGATISSIMO 4.30pm Curragh (Sunday)