This Saturday’s racing is something to savour. The feature meeting is the Curragh, which stages the Group 1 Irish Oaks, alongside Group 2 Sapphire Stakes and Group 3 Anglesey Stakes. There’s also ITV action, with Newbury and Market Rasen the other courses on terrestrial television.
We’ll have horse racing tips for all the action, but the Irish Oaks has to be the focus. A race won by the likes of Snow Fairy, Seventh Heaven, Enable, Sea of Class and Even So in recent years, it’s steeped in history. This year features a heavy favourite, with Snowfall nearing 1-4 in the market.
For many, trends are the principle angle for finding winners. Although they shouldn’t be treated as gospel, they can point us in the right direction and I’ll be looking at all the key trends for this year’s Irish Oaks. They are taken from the last 10 renewals and can be found below.
9/10 – Had won a pattern race that season
Group 1 races are the pinnacle of our sport, and as such, they’re usually won by horses with proven quality. That’s why nine of the last 10 renewals have been won by a horse who had already secured pattern honours that term.
Staying on the winning thread, nine of the last ten renewals were also won by a horse who had secured at least one victory that season. The only horse to buck that trend is Chicquita back in 2013.
8/10 – Finished top two in their most recent start
Coming into the Irish Oaks in good form is essential, with eight of the last ten winners arriving of a top-two finish. That includes the last four renewals, with Even So winning the Oaks Trial before landing the feature event.
8/10 – Adjusted RPR of at least 121 last time
As with any Group 1 contest, you need to be hugely talented to scoop the prize. It also takes a big performance, as the RPR figures show. Eight of the last ten winners had an adjusted RPR of 121 on their most recent start, which ties in nicely with the previous trend of arriving in good form.
7/10 – Had won over 1m 2f or beyond
Proven stamina is another essential part of winning the Irish Oaks, with seven of the last 10 winners having won over at least ten furlongs. Surprisingly, that knocks out several horses from the reckoning from a trends perspective. Nicest, Divinely, Mariesque and Ahandfulofsummers are all yet to win a race at ten furlongs or beyond.
Irish Oaks 2021 trends selection
There is only one horse who fits all the trends, and that is Snowfall. She’s the heavy odds-on favourite and that’s for good reason, given the manner of her victories in 2021. She returned with victory in the Musidora at York and she simply destroyed her rivals in the Oaks at Epsom last month. It’ll be different ground on Saturday, but she’s versatile in that sense and remarkably, she’s 21 pounds clear on ratings.
Beyond Snowfall, the most trends matched by another horse is just two, which makes her the only horse who can be put forward from a trends perspective.
If you back any of our selections you can watch them live on the free Racing Post app or racingpost.com. Simply log in to one of your bookmaker accounts and click ‘Watch live’ on the racecards.