Great Britain & Ireland Preview: Irish Guineas weekend

May 20th, 2022

Most attention this weekend is on The Curragh, where the Irish 2,000 Guineas (G1) and 1,000 Guineas (G1) are being staged. There are several other top races as well, including the Tattersalls Gold Cup (G1) for older horses.

TwinSpires has a Rest of the World Bet Back offer on for Saturday and Sunday’s racing at The Curragh, where bettors who opt in to the offer can get up to $10 back on their win bets if their horse finishes second.

With that in mind, here are some spot plays for the Group races at The Curragh this weekend.

Saturday, May 21

Race 2: Marble Hill Stakes (G3), 6 furlongs, 2-year-olds

One of the first graded stakes races of the year for two-year-olds. For a five-runner event, it’s surprisingly open, but I’m going for #4 Tough Talk, who showed plenty of heart to win his debut. #1 Blackbeard, unbeaten in two starts, should be the hardest for him to beat.

  • $10 win: #4 Tough Talk

Race 3: Greenlands Stakes (G2), 6 furlongs, 4-year-olds and up

If this goes to known form, #1 A Case Of You should have too many guns for this field. The winner of last year’s Prix de l’Abbaye (G1) is fresh from a clear victory in the Al Quoz Sprint (G1) on Dubai World Cup day, and his form is well above most of his opponents. He has a three-pound penalty for his Group 1 victories, but if he’s in top form that shouldn’t be enough to stop him here. #2 Brad the Brief, #3 Glen Shiel, and #7 Power Under Me are the most likely to fill the minor slots.

  • $10 win/$30 show: #1 A Case Of You

Race 4: Irish 2,000 Guineas (G1), 1 mile, 3-year-olds

It’s pretty difficult to go past #7 Native Trail here. He lost his unbeaten record in the 2,000 Guineas (G1) to his stablemate Coroebus and without that rival here, it would be a surprise if he didn’t account for his rivals on a track where he decisively won the National Stakes (G1) last year. #2 Buckaroo’s four-length triumph in the Listed Tetrarch Stakes May 2 is probably the best form of the locals; he looks to be progressing well but will need further improvement to win. #1 Atomic Jones, #4 Imperial Fighter, and #5 Ivy League look the best of the others.

  • $10 win: #7 Native Trail
  • $2 trifecta: 7 with 1, 2, 4, 5 with 1, 2, 4, 5

Sunday, May 22

Race 3: Tattersalls Gold Cup (G1), 1 5/16 miles, 4-year-olds and up

An interesting collection of horses are potentially lining up here. The top two, however, look to be #6 Lord North, fresh from dead-heating for first in the Dubai Turf (G1) after nearly a year off, and the well-traveled #8 State Of Rest, seeking a first top-level score at home after victories abroad in the Saratoga Derby (G1), the Cox Plate (G1) in Australia, and the Prix Ganay (G1) in France. I give the slight advantage to State of Rest as a horse who seems to still be improving. Last year’s 1-2 in this race, #3 Helvic Dream and #4 Broome, should be competitive but look most likely for exotics, as does #1 Alenquer.

  • $10 win/$30 show: #8 State of Rest

Race 4: Lanwades Stud Stakes (G2), 1 mile, 4-year-olds and up fillies and mares

The best-performed runner here is #4 Pearls Galore, twice a runner-up in Group 1 company before finishing sixth to Space Blues in the Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1). She won nicely on resuming in the Listed Heritage Stakes April 6 and should go a bold race here. #8 Twilight Spinner is clearly her toughest rival, having won the Athasi S. (G3) well when resuming, but I’m going with proven class here.

  • $10 win: #4 Pearls Galore

Race 5: Irish 1,000 Guineas (G1), 1 mile, 3-year-old fillies

The fillies’ classic has an open look to it. Aidan O’Brien’s #13 Tuesday is the likely favorite after finishing third in the English 1,000 Guineas (G1) behind Cachet and Prosperous Voyage; that form looked decent, if not outstanding, after Cachet was narrowly beaten in the French guineas equivalent last weekend. However, I’m going for Dermot Weld’s #6 Homeless Songs, a decisive winner of the Irish 1,000 Guineas Trial (G3) April 2; she has a great turn of foot and may be better suited at one mile.

O’Brien’s best chance may actually be #5 History, a very good winner of the Cornelscourt Stakes (G3) on resuming. Don’t ignore #9 Mise En Scene, running for the first time this season; though she didn’t handle Del Mar in the Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1), she wasn’t far from second behind Inspiral in the Fillies’ Mile (G1) the start beforehand, and a similar effort will take her close. #1 Agartha is also a must-include for exotics.

  • $10 win/$30 show: #6 Homeless Songs
  • $1 trifecta: 6, 13 with 1, 5, 6, 9, 13 with 1, 5, 6, 9, 13