The Irish 2,000 Guineas (Saturday 27 May, 16:10) is the first Irish Classic of the season, and it takes place at the Curragh. It was first run in 1921, and the most famous winner is super-stallion Sadler’s Wells, whilst it has also been won by other top stallions like Dubawi. Meanwhile, 8 horses have completed the English 2,000 Guineas and and Irish 2,000 Guineas double, with the last being Gleneagles in 2015.
5 winners won last time out
Aidan O’Brien has trained 6 of the last 10 winners
Winners ran 15 to 21 days previously
SPs have ranged from 2/5 to 5/1
Churchill bids to follow in the footsteps of Rock of Gibraltar, Henrythenavigator and Gleneagles in completing the English and Irish 2,000 Guineas double for Aidan O’Brien, and is likely to be very hard to beat having shown his form on all types of ground, and having been impressive in two wins at the Curragh. He also has a couple of stablemates to try and dictate the perfect pace.
Maiden winner at two who flopped behind an unentered Aidan O’Brien horse when second favourite in a 2,000 Guineas Trial. Regained the winning habit last time on the all-weather at Dundalk, but even a 10lb hike in the ratings leaves him with plenty to find to trouble the best of these.
Has won his two races in fetching style, but the form of those races has yet to be boosted in a way that suggests he’s up to winning a classic. At least has the potential for further improvement though, unlike the majority of the contenders.
Solid performer having finished in the first four at the Breeders’ Cup, the UAE Derby and the English 2,000 Guineas. However, it’s worrying that his worst three runs have all been here at the Curragh.
Spirit Of Valour
Big prices for his last two races, which highlighted Aidan O’Brien’s third-string isn’t up to this class. Likely pacemaker.
Flopped in America on his last start, but had been progressing nicely before that, including a win in the UAE Derby. Is the second-highest rated horse in the field, and could give Churchill most to think about.
2017 Irish 2,000 Guineas Summary
Irishcorrespondent is the unknown factor in the race, but he’ll probably have to be a superstar to beat Churchill, for whom the money is likely to arrive in security vans if the Coolmore boys know he’s fit and well. More interesting for the forecast is Thunder Snow, who has every right to finish second on the ratings, whilst the booking of Christophe Soumillon catches the eye.
Banker: Churchill to win @ 7/19 with Unibet
Value Play: Forecast Churchill to beat Thunder Snow @ 5/2 Paddy Power