second day of Irish Champions Weekend sees the glorious surroundings of the
Curragh take centre stage, writes Jack Lacey-Hatton.
As well as the feature race, the International Irish St Leger at 4:40pm, a host of other top quality racing will take place with part two of Longines Irish Champions Weekend containing four Group 1s.
Here are five to watch out for on Sunday afternoon.
Petite Coco -Moyglare “Jewels” Blandford Stakes (Group 2) -
While much of the focus will be on superstar filly Love, punters won’t be ignoring Paddy Twomey’s La Petite Coco.
The three year-old has three wins from six starts on the Flat, including an impressive display at Cork last month, winning five and a half lengths clear of Thunder Kiss.
Daughter of the 2013 derby winner Ruler Of The World, she should also benefit from any overnight rain.
Slippers – Flying Five Stakes (Group 1) - 2:55
One of four Group 1s on the card, the Flying Five Stakes is packed full of in-form runners, making picking just one to keep an eye on a tough task.
But Glass Sippers, who won this race last time out, won’t fear the rest when aiming to retain her crown from 2020.
Trained by Kevin Ryan, she has always run her best races when crossing the Irish Sea, and this weekend should no different.
She ran well to finish third at Goodwood last time out in a highly competitive field and looks set to go close once more.
Songs – Moyglare Stud Stakes (Group 1) - 3:30
She may have not been seen since beating Agartha (also involved) in Leopardstown back in July but that shouldn’t be a problem for Dermot Weld’s Homeless Songs.
The Moyglare-owned two year-old will again have Oisin Orr on board, and will be looking to make it two wins from two starts.
Weld is normally extremely selective when entering his horses, so don’t take the break as a sign of weakness.
Unless Agartha can make a huge jump, it could be Homeless Songs’ race to lose.
River – National Stakes (Group 1) – 4:05
Ebro River’s intriguing season will have one final run out in the group 1 National Stakes for colts and fillies.
Trained by Hugo Palmer and with James Doyle piloting, the two year-old has strong recent pedigree on this track having won the Phoenix Stakes here last time out, just five weeks ago.
Although she is stepping up to seven furlongs for the first time, Ebro River is well-run this season and fit enough to compensate.
Aidan O’Brien’s unbeaten colt Point Lonsdale will provide a stern contest but it is worth keeping an eye on the Al Shaqab-owned runner.
Blandford Stakes (Group 2) – 2:20
Not an unknown quantity of course, but on a weekend made for champions you can’t ignore Love.
Aidan O’Brien’s superstar filly will be looking to add to her lengthy list of major wins after a summer which hasn’t gone entirely her way.
An awkward start cost her badly at York in the Juddmonte International Stakes last month and she also looked a little award in a third place finish in the King George at Ascot.
But you can’t rule out a horse that has won so much, including the 1000 Guineas last year and the Prince of Wales’s Stakes, to round off the season with another memorable performance.