Tapestry to thread victory passage
Our Irish Eyes column previews Sunday's top-quality card at the Curragh, featuring the Moyglare Stud Stakes.
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The Curragh hosts the first of three consecutive weekends of Group One action this Sunday where the Group One Moyglare Stud Stakes for two-year-olds fillies' is the highlight.
Once Ballydoyle decided to stump up €22,500 in order to supplement Tapestry for the race earlier this week, that took the total prize fund on offer to over half a million Euros and the fact that entry is free for families (defined as a minimum of one adult and one child, under-16) should ensure a decent crowd, despite it clashing with the Dublin v's Kerry game in Croke Park.
Last year the race was annexed by the British-trained Sky Lantern who subsequently won the QIPCO 1000 Guineas and Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot. Britain again supplies two key players in the form of Royal Ascot heroines Kiyoshi and Rizeena, winners of the Albany and the Queen Mary Stakes respectively.
Kiyoshi was chalked up as the early favourite for the Moyglare Stud Stakes but this is a Group One that has not been particularly kind to favourite backers of late, with only two managing to land the odds over the past seven runnings.
For all that Kiyoshi was very impressive in the Albany, one cannot help be reminded of another Albany Stakes winner that came into this race and was sent off at Evens favourite. On that particular occasion, the Moyglare was to prove the first of many defeats in a slippery slope for Memory, who never won again - in fact she all but refused to start in three of her four subsequent starts.
Many punters were calling for Memory to spend the rest of her life as a guest of HRH The Queen and in a way, that is in fact what happened; rather than being jailed for crimes against punters however, HRH has in fact chosen to breed from 'the hamlet cigar filly' - good luck with that project Ma'am!
Lillie Langtry and Listen also got turned over at odds-on in this race over the last seven years but one filly who did land the odds for Aidan O'Brien, albeit it by a mere neck when sent off at 2/7, was Rumplestiltskin.
On Sunday, her unbeaten daughter Tapestry will bid to follow in her mother's hoof-prints and she is put forward as the nap selection in a competitive race that is more than worthy of its Group One status.
Tapestry has impressed on both her starts here to-date, particularly when she took the Group Two Debutante over course and distance last time out. Her subsequent work at home is rumoured to have been from the very top drawer, which was borne when connections forked out the aforementioned €22,500 in order to supplement her for this race. We expect her to take this and in doing so, usurp Kiyoshi as the 1000 Guineas favourite by the evening.
Sparkle Factor is the next best selection in the opening one mile maiden for two-year-old fillies'. Running in the colours of the sponsors, Moyglare Stud, this daughter of Arch made a very encouraging debut on yielding ground when faring best of the fillies and staying on nicely into second place behind Altruistic, a promising Galileo colt of Johnny Murtagh's.
Back in fillies' company and on ground much more suitable, given her pedigree, there will be a lot of disappointed faces if she fails to build on her debut by taking this.
In the €100,000 Cambridgeshire, Joanna Morgan's Moran Gra catches the eye as the each-way selection. He ran well in the Royal Hunt Cup, finishing six and a half lengths off Belgian Bill, who was just beaten by the narrowest of margins in a Group Three at Deauville last weekend.
Last season Moran Gra was beaten a little more than four lengths off a mark of 100 in the British Cambridgeshire. Competing off 95 and with last season's Champion Apprentice Ronan Whelan taking three off, he should give us a good run for our money.
Nap: Tapestry - Moyglare Stud Stakes, 4.15 The Curragh.
Next Best: Sparkle Factor - 2.10 The Curragh
Each-way: Moran Gra - Irish Cambridgeshire, 4.45 The Curragh