The first of this season’s classics is upon us already and, with so many different form-lines with so little to link them, the 2,000 Guineas poses a difficult puzzle for us to solve – so let’s get straight into it.
Ryan Moore takes over from Joseph O’Brien in the saddle as he bids to win his first 2,000 Guineas and trainer Aidan O’Brien’s 7th. Could easily win – but I won’t lose any sleep if he does at 3/1.
Trainer Andrer fabre bids for a 3rd 2,000 Guineas after Pennekamp and Zafonic in the 90s. Finished one place behind Gleneagles when the pair met in France last year but Gleneagles was demoted afterwards. Won his comeback run and shouldn’t be far away from wherever Gleneagles finishes, but doesn’t look in the same league as his trainer’s other winners.
Ol Man River 8/1
Aidan O’Brien’s supposed second string, but his son Joseph has ridden one winner of the 2,000 Guineas for his dad and may well be better than Gleneagles.
Looked to be crying out for a mile in his prep race over 7 furlongs – and should be a tough nut to crack. A solid each-way chance, which could prove a winning one if there’s no superstar in the field, though his trainer was convinced that Ivawood was the better horse before the trials.
Impressive winner of a Newbury maiden on his seasonal debut, and connections have paid 30,000 to supplement him – but retained jockey Paul Hanagan rides Estidhkaar.
Disappointing seasonal debut behind Estidhkaar but went off at 13/8 that day. Connections say he’ll be at least 10lb better today.
Celestial Path 20/1
It’s rare that trainer Sir Mark Prescott readies one so early, and that’s probably a tip in itself, and will love the ground.
A race full of imponderables and, as there have been no big market moves in the build-up this week, it seems no connections are brimming with confidence. The connections of Estidhkaar had a good season last year however and, with Paul Hanagan growing in confidence all the time in his new role, he may be able to claim another classic.