herald

Thursday 8 December 2016

Arc' for Oaks

Aidan O’Brien is the only Irish trainer to win the race since 2003 when Vintage Tipple provided Paddy Mullins with a memorable success. Pic: Sportsfile
Aidan O’Brien is the only Irish trainer to win the race since 2003 when Vintage Tipple provided Paddy Mullins with a memorable success. Pic: Sportsfile

Ireland's penultimate Classic of the flat season, the Darley Irish Oaks, has so often been a happy hunting ground for overseas challengers over the years and today's supplementary stage is likely to see inclusions from both Hugo Palmer and Roger Varian.

Aidan O'Brien is the only Irish trainer to win the race since 2003 when Vintage Tipple provided Paddy Mullins with a memorable success, but even O'Brien has only won the race four-times and once in the last seven runnings.

With Minding not attempting to do the Oaks double, Hugo Palmer and his connections look likely to fork out €40,000 to add Epsom Oaks runner-up Architecture to the field this morning.

Just a maiden winner from five starts, Architecture, was just a length and three-parts off Minding at Epsom although she disappointed when meeting O'Brien's main hopeful for this Saturday, Even Song, at Royal Ascot in the Ribblesdale Stakes.

Ajman Princess was runner-up to Even Song at Royal Ascot and Saturday's €400,000 contest is believed to be under consideration by Roger Varian and his team.

The daughter of Teofilo is still a maiden but defied her odds of 33/1 to finish just a length and a half off Even Song in the Ribblesdale Stakes.

O'Brien is again likely to be well represented in the race and he said yesterday: "We've been pleased with Even Song since Ascot and the plan is that she will run on Saturday with possibly a few others.

"Even Song had a little break after Ascot and is well and is entitled to step up now."

The ground was described as good to yielding yesterday with something similar expected on Saturday according to Paul Hensey of the Curragh.

O'Brien added: "Even Song seems to handle most ground so that shouldn't be a problem.

"Pretty Perfect won nicely at Cork and is after really progressing with every run and loves a mile and a half so she is another possible runner on Saturday."

Promoted articles

Entertainment News