Darley Irish Oaks – Key Trends
Some key trends have appeared in the race over the last 10 years and are worth focussing on;
- 10 of the last 10 winners had run in the last 45 days
- 10 of the last 10 winners had won over 1m+ in their career
- 9 out of the last 10 winners had run 2 to 5 times in their career
- 9 out of the last 10 winners had finished either 1st or 2nd in their last two races
- 7 out of the last 10 winners had finished in either 1st or 2nd in a Group 2 race previously
All of the declared field fall under the trends of having run in the last 45 days and having a career win over 1m plus. For the trend of having had between 2 and 5 career runs, the horses that fit this trend are Covert Love, Gretchen, Kissed By Angels, Speedy Boarding and Words. Off these horses, only Covert Love, Speedy Boarding and Words have finished in the first two in their last two races. From these three, Words is the only horse that fits four of the trends and has Group race winning form, not however at Group 2 level, but having been victorious at Group 3 level. Covert Love also fits four of the trends but as yet, has only won up to Listed level, winning well at Newcastle.
For those looking to focus on Group level form, the ante-post favourite Curvy has won a Group 2 contest whilst Qualify and Together Forever both have Group 1 winning form. Together Forever is perhaps the most interesting runner, having won the Group 1 Dubai Fillies Mile at Newmarket last October. Stepped up to 1m 2f in the Musidora at York in her seasonal reappearance in May, she was a running on second. She then ran in the Epsom Oaks, finishing seventh, but did not seem to enjoy the idiosyncrasies of the course at Epsom, hanging badly on the straight. If you can forgive that Epsom run and focus on her previous form, then she may well offer each-way value at 14/1.
Saturday evening sees the Darley Irish Oaks taking place at the Curragh. The Irish Oaks is a Group 1 contest run over 1m 4f and is competed exclusively by three-year old fillies. The Irish equivalent of the Epsom Oaks, the race often sees the winner of the Epsom Oaks competing and this year is no different with Qualify aiming to win both events.
The market is currently headed by the David Wachman trained Curvy. Four straight wins this season culminating with victory in the Group 2 Ribblesdale Stakes at Royal Ascot and the filly is 9/4 for victory at the Curragh. The current second favourite at 7/2 is Words, one of four entries for trainer Aidan O’Brien. With only two racecourse appearances so far, both have resulted in victory including the Munster Oaks Stakes at Cork last time out. Epsom Oaks winner Qualify, another of O’Briens runners, is a best price of 8/1 at present. A shock winner 50/1 at Epsom, where she caught the favourite Legatissimo on the line, she then finished down the field in the Irish Derby. The Hugo Palmer trained Covert Love has progressed well this season, with three victories from her three runs, progressing from a maiden to handicap to Listed company and she’s currently 9/1. Britain is also represented by the John Gosden trained Gretchen and the James Fanshawe trained Speedy Boarding who are both available at 16/1 at present.