Curragh Sunday Preview
War Command’s stunning victory in the Coventry Stakes was the outstanding juvenile performance of the meeting and he was instantly promoted to favourite for the 2014 2000 Guineas. Aidan O’Brien’s colt is set to return to action in the Group One Phoenix Stakes at 3.15.
O’Brien also saddles Wilshire Boulevard, a good winner over course and distance last time out. The biggest threat may come from David Wachman’s Sudirman who got the better of Big Time by half a length here in the Railway Stakes.
Ballydoyle are strongly represented in the Group 2 Debutante Stakes with three promising fillies. Joseph O’Brien partners Tapestry who beat Chroussa snugly on her debut. Perhaps ran on well last time and could provide the biggest threat under Seamie Heffernan.
Jim Bolger’s Scintillula was slightly disappointing when only third of four behind Ernest Hemingway earlier this week. That followed a fine run in the Irish Oaks and a shock victory over O’Brien’s Mars.
She could be asked to turn out again for the Group 3 Royal Whip Stakes at 2.45 where her main rival would appear to be Maputo. Mark Johnston’s tough colt was winning for the fifth time this season when landing the odds at Hamilton recently.
That victory followed an impressive win in a competitive handicap at Newmarket’s July meeting and he will take some stopping if he arrives here in the same form. The four-year-old Caponata has been keeping good company and cannot be discounted.
The Group 3 Phoenix Sprint Stakes at 3.15 could go the Slade Power for Ed Lynam. The son of Dutch Art won the Sapphire Stakes here before finishing a highly creditable third in the July Cup.
O’Brien will be hoping to round off a successful day with Australian import Sea Siren who came good at Fairyhouse last time. Mass Rally ran on well behind Jack Dexter at Newcastle and could run into a place again here.
Selections: 2.15 Scalabrina, 2.45 Maputo, 3.15 Tapestry, 3.45 War Command (NAP), 4.15 Slade Power (nb), 4.45 So Devoted, 5.15 Stronger Than Me.