2019 Irish Oaks Tips and Preview by Dave Stevos
The big race of the day on Saturday at the Curragh is the Irish Oaks. There is also a decent card at Newbury, check out our tips here. A total of nine fillies will go to post after rank outsider Operatic Export was withdrawn. The ground is going to be on the quick side and that will suit some more than others. Dave Stevos has previewed the race, check out his free 2019 Irish Oaks tips and preview below…
2019 Irish Oaks Tips and Preview
As ever, the O’Brien family look to hold a very strong hand for this year’s Irish Oaks. Iridessa has drifted out to 4/1 for Joseph and Wayne Lordan and that looks a very fair price. She is having her first run at 12f, so she has to prove her stamina. The daughter of Ruler Of The World won the 10f Pretty Polly here last time, staying on strongly. On that evidence, she is worth a crack at this trip but the dam side of her pedigree raises stamina doubts.
Her only winning half siblings won over 7f and 9.6f, while her Grand dam was best at 6f to 10f. Her dam’s half sister won over 13f, but apart from her there is very little stamina in her pedigree. Pink Dogwood, on the other hand, is far more stoutly bred. By dual Derby winner Camelot, she is a full sister to Irish derby winner Latrobe. She ran really well in the Epsom Oaks, her sole career start at 12f. Dropping back to 10f last time in the Pretty Polly didn’t suit when Iridessa comfortably had her measure. However, over today’s trip of 12f she could reverse the form.
Star Catcher represents the all conquering Gosden/Dettori team and she beat Fleeting last time at Royal Ascot (12f sft). The daughter of Sea The Stars is 2/4 so far, both wins coming on soft. She ran well on her only start on good ground, finishing a close 3rd in a Listed heat at Newbury. However, the suspicion lingers that soft ground may be her preferred surface and at 9/2 she is overlooked.
Beckett Pair Have Each Way Claims
The two Lope de Vega fillies, trained by Ralph Beckett, deserve their places in this field. The mount of Harry Bentley, Manuela De Vega, ran a massive race in the Oaks at Epsom. She didn’t get the clearest of runs but stayed on well for 4th. That leaves her with a length to find with Fleeting and Pink Dogwood, and it is hard to see her turning that around. A place is a real possibility though and any rain would help.
Colin Keane rides Antonia De Vega for the same yard and she looked mightily impressive last time. It was her first run back after getting injured as a 2yo and she showed no ill effects. She won on quick ground on debut, but again, given her pedigree and how good she looked on soft ground last time, she would possibly like to see the rain arrive too. She has the assistance of a top jockey though and a big run would not surprise.
Fleeting Can Floor Them
However, my idea of the most likely winner here is Fleeting. I thought she was really unlucky in the Oaks at Epsom. She was denied a clear run at the most inopportune moment and only for that, she would have won. She has nothing to find with Pink Dogwood on that run and though she was behind Star Catcher last time, that was on soft ground. This daughter of Zoffany is more effective on quicker ground and she will relish conditions at the Curragh.
Donnacha O’Brien gets the leg up and he is 1/1 on this filly, winning the May Hill on her at Doncaster last season (8f good). Although many thought she wouldn’t get 12f due to being by Zoffany, Fleeting has proved the doubters wrong on her last two runs at the distance. She deserves to get her head in front after a couple of cracking efforts this season and at odds of 11/2 she could take some beating.