I was a massive fan of Nicest’s mother, Chicquita, and she actually won this race in 2013. Adding to her stellar pedigree is the American Triple Crown winner, American Pharoah and the eternally revered Montjeu. I’d be surprised if she didn’t win something at some point. She will be bolstered by the firmer ground and she was arguably unlucky in the Ribblesdale, when finishing on strongly after losing a shoe. She might have some trouble beating the favourite but I wouldn’t be surprised to see her improve.
Divinely was well beaten by Snowfall when placing third in the Oaks and probably looks to sit behind her in the placings in this race. She’s no stranger to the Curragh, after she shed her maiden tag here last August, beating the aforementioned Nicest. She’s incredibly well bred, being by the late and great Galileo and Red Evie, and thus being a full sister to Arc winner Found. I’d imagine she will be the best of the rest.
Let’s be realistic here, it would be a gigantic surprise to see Snowfall defeated and not do the Oaks double. She was a surprising and emphatic winner of the Musidora Stakes at York and she was simply the best when absolutely storming to a record breaking 16 lengths victory in the Epsom Oaks. Of course, there’s the slight question that the ground is Good today, which is the opposite of when she won the Oaks, but her opposition would need to improve a substantial amount to get anywhere near her, even in faster ground.
written by Kieran McHugh