The 2020 Irish Oaks takes place over a mile and four furlongs at the Curragh on Saturday 18 July. Unlike many of the Irish Classics, it is a race that has not been dominated by Aidan O’Brien in recent years, with seven of the last 10 editions being won by horses trained in England and another by a French-trained horse. However, with no English representatives this year, Aidan O’Brien will be hoping to claim his third Irish Oaks in the last seven years.
Only eight runners are set to go to post for the 2020 Irish Oaks and Aidan O’Brien saddles four of them. The opposition includes Yaxeni, but she has already been beaten by one of the O’Brien quartet over this distance. Ger Lyons goes in search of a second Irish Classic win with Even So, and this daughter of Camelot could enjoy her first run at 12-furlongs.
Joseph O’Brien runs New York Girl, but she didn’t look to stay the trip in the Irish Derby. That means the biggest danger to the Aidan O’Brien runners looks to be Cayenne Pepper who is trained by Jessica Harrington. This daughter of Australia is another that should relish the step-up in trip, but O’Brien has a good line of form as his star filly Magical beat her comprehensively last time.
Jockey bookings of for the Aidan O’Brien runners don’t always point to backing the right horse, but Laburnum looks the least likely winner. She was beaten by Even So last time but could find plenty of improvement having run just twice. Passion also looks down the pecking order after being well-beaten on her last two runs.
Derby winning jockey Michael Hussey gets another chance to shine on Snow and she’s already proven herself over 12-furlongs. However, Wayne Lordan rode her to victory last time and he jumps ship to get aboard Ennistymon.
That’s why Ennistymon is our 2020 Irish Oaks tip. She’s also already proven her stamina by staying on strongly to claim second in the English Oaks. The Curragh puts even more emphasis on stamina, which should suit her even better, and the O’Brien quartet looks sure to set the fractions to suit her.
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