Ruby Walsh and Fran Berry are on the Paddy Power panel of experts giving their top tips for the final day's racing at the Curragh, Photo by David Fitzgerald/Sportsfile
The expert tips for the final day of the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby festival from Fran Berry and Ruby Walsh.
The second race at 2:10, the Airlie Stud Stakes first on the lad’s agenda to mention and all of the panel were high on the quality of this six furlong race but Ruby kicked it off and reckons it will be hard to look past Aidan O’Brien’s odds on favourite Statuette. But called the race “one for horse racing lovers.”
Fran Berry was hesitant to recommend anything beyond the favourite but complemented many of the other runners. But it looks like Stauette’s to lose in this one.
It’s another six furlong trip up next with Sherry FitzGerald Country Homes Handicap. Ruby is out of action for this one as his choice Goodnight Girl who he predicted to run well in the soft has been withdrawn. Fran fancied the favourite Heavenly Power ridden by Conor Hoban and he reckons this horse has come on a lot and should take him victory in this one.
Fran’s first runner to mention was 16-1 shot Laugh a Minute who could run a big race in this one, but the two to handicappers to the forefront of his mind in this one were Additional trained by Sarah Lynam at 5-1 and Alligator Alley formerly trained by Joseph O’Brien and now by David O’Meara which sits at 6-1. A wide open race in regards to betting.
The experts paid mention to the English that usually have success on Irish soil in these handicaps although that has dwindled in recent years. Ruby, although he was unaware at the time, opted for the favourite at the time of writing 9-2 shot Erosandpsyche. Ruby cited the horse’s higher draw for this one, especially if it rains.
3:45, The big race
The big race on the final day of the Curragh, the Group 1 Alwasmiyah Pretty Polly Stakes. The general consensus was that this one is a “cracker” race and displays a nice blend of Irish versus English horses.
La Petite Coco was the favourite early in the week but has since drifted to third in the betting at 5-1. The current top two in the betting are both trained by Englishman William Haggas with My Astra and Purplepay who sit at 3-1 and 10-3 respectively.
But it’s My Astra who is Fran Berry’s choice for this one. Ruby stayed away from all the aforementioned picks and discussion and opted for Concert Hall. The three-year old is trained by Aidan O’Brien and ridden by Ryan Moore. Ruby reckon the mile and two furlongs will suit Concert hall and the filly currently sits at 11-2.
The Irish Stallion Farms EBF "Ragusa" Handicap and straight out of the gate not much love for Willie Mullins’ Berkshire Royal who Ruby described as “having plenty of ability but has his problems” and 22-1 price probably reflects that.
Ruby has opted for Dancila and it’s a second time unlucky for the Kildare man’s pick as Dancila has since been withdrawn.
Fran’s choice was Michael Halford horse that is drawn in stall two for this one and that is Golden Twilight. Fran cited the horse's maiden win in Dundalk, a track where he has won on two occasions. 16-1 shot that could be worth a go each way according to our expert.
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