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Irish Champions Weekend Tips - Tips for every race on Sunday at the Curragh

  • We take a look through the card on day two of Irish Champions Weekend
  • Four fantastic Group One races will be staged at the Curragh on Sunday
  • The Irish St Leger is the feature race
  • The Flying Five Stakes, National Stakes and Moyglare Stud Stakes also share top billing
  • We have the full card covered on the final day of Irish Champions Weekend
curragh September
Curragh races. (Getty)

If you thought day one of Irish Champions Weekend was packed with quality, wait until you see the card on day two. Sunday's card at the Curragh features four superb Group One races, as well as a strong Group Two and a couple of lucrative handicaps.

Without further ado, let's get stuck into this fantastic card.

Irish Champions Weekend Day Two Schedule


Time
Title
2:00pmIrish Stallion Farms EBF "Bold Lad" Sprint Handicap (Premier Handicap) 6f
2:35pmMoyglare ''Jewels'' Blandford Stakes (Group 2) 1m2f
3:10pmDerrinstown Stud Flying Five Stakes (Group 1) 5f
3:40pmMoyglare Stud Stakes (Group 1) 7f
4:10pm Goffs Vincent O'Brien National Stakes (Group 1) 7f
4:40pmComer Group International Irish St. Leger (Group 1) 1m6f
5:15pmTattersalls Ireland Super Auction Sale Stakes (Plus 10 Race) 6½f
5:50pmIrish Stallion Farms EBF "Northfields" Handicap (Premier Handicap) 1m2f

Irish Champions Weekend Tips Day Two


Race 1 - Bold Lad Handicap Tips


A thrilling way to start Sunday's card at the Curragh, with many of the best sprint handicappers from across Ireland and England going toe-to-toe. I always prefer a longer-odds, each-way punt in handicap sprints, and the one who catches my eye further down the market is NORDIC PASSAGE.

Johnny Levin's five-year-old has won three of his six starts in handicaps this term, two of those wins coming here at the Curragh. Nordic Passage stayed on to finish fourth behind Make A Challenge in a Listed race over five-furlongs last time out. He should be more comfortable back up over six, and Donagh O'Connor takes three valuable pounds off his back.

Race 2 - Blandford Stakes Tips


One Voice and Magic Wand bring solid form to the table and either would be worthy winners. I have, however, backed CAYENNE PEPPER on all three of her starts so far this term, and I'm going to side with Jessica Harrington's filly again here.

In both the Irish Oaks and the Give Thanks Stakes, Cayenne Pepper looked the most likely winner two furlongs from home. The favourite was eventually run down by Even So in that Classic, before suffering a similar fate at Cork last time out, where defending champion Tarnawa stormed home late on to resign Cayenne Pepper to her fourth-straight defeat.

On her only previous start over ten furlongs, Harrington's filly finished second to Magical on her reappearance in the Pretty Polly Stakes. Recent performances over 12-furlongs would suggest this is her optimum trip, and I remain confident Cayenne Pepper is a filly of the highest calibre.

glass slippers
Glass Slippers (left) chasing Battaash home at Glorious Goodwood. (Getty)

Race 3 - Flying Five Stakes Tips


Glass Slippers3:10pm Derrinstown Stud Flying Five Stakes (Group 1) 5fGET 5/1 HERE
+18 only. Gamble Responsibly. Ts and Cs apply. Ladbrokes is operated by LC International Limited (Suite 6, Atlantic Suites, Gibraltar) and licensed (ref 54743) and regulated by the British Gambling Commission for persons gambling in Great Britain. For persons gambling outside Great Britain, Ladbrokes is licensed (ref 010, 012) by the Government of Gibraltar and regulated by the Gibraltar Gambling Commissioner.

A'Ali got the better of Make A Challenge when they met in the Sapphire Stakes earlier in the season, and the bookies feel they are the two to beat once again. Neither have ever produced the goods at Group One level, though.

The same cannot be said for GLASS SLIPPERS, who completed a hat-trick last autumn with a stunning triumph in the Abbaye on Arc day. Kevin Ryan's filly has followed Battaash home twice this season, getting within two-and-a-quater lengths of her rival in the King George at Goodwood last time out.

Glass Slippers came into her own at this point last season. A return to the Abbaye may be her main objective, but there's an argument to say she's the classiest sprinter in this race, and another Group One looks to be hers for the taking.

Race 4 - Moyglare Stud Stakes Tips


Teresa Mendoza3:40pm Moyglare Stud Stakes (Group 1) 7fGET 12/1 HERE
18+ only. Ts and Cs apply. Gamble responsibly.

Pretty Gorgeous dominates the market here, having comfortably seen off both Shale and Mother Earth last time out. While the form is difficult to knock, I'd rather take an each-way gamble on Ken Condon's TERESA MENDOZA.

Shane Foley's mount was an 18/1 shot on debut here at the Curragh, and proceeded to sweep his rivals aside in impressive fashion. Teresa Mendoza was beaten by a 66/1 shot last time out, but still impressed with a good showing on bottomless ground which was always going to be challenging.

First time out, Teresa Mendoza destroyed 99-rated Monaasib without breaking a sweat. New Treasure may have been the market backmarker in the Tower Stakes, but connections think highly enough of his to hand him a Dewhurst entry, and Condon's colt still beat 98-rated Coulthard by over a length.

This is a big step up in class, and Teresa Mendoza is untested over further than six-furlongs. Yet, he's out of a former 2000 Guineas runner-up and a Prix Jean Prat winner in Territories, and his performances so far suggest he should be even better over further. It's a risk, but one I'm willing to take.

Race 5 - Vincent O'Brien National Stakes Tips


Master Of The Seas4:10pm Goffs Vincent O'Brien National Stakes (Group 1) 7fGET 3/1 HERE
18+ only. Ts and Cs apply. Gamble responsibly. Coral is operated by LC International Limited and licensed and regulated by the British Gambling Commission for persons gambling in Great Britain. For persons gambling outside Great Britain, Coral is licensed by the Government of Gibraltar and regulated by the Gibraltar Gambling Commissioner.

This is the juvenile race of the season so far, with the top three in the betting all featuring prominently in the betting for the 2021 2000 Guineas. Out of the three, Battleground has impressed me the most, and if I had to back one horse to win that Classic right now, he would be my selection.

On Sunday, however, I think Battleground may fall victim to a speedier sort. Lucky Vega would certainly fit that description, but I think this year's National Stakes will go the way of MASTER OF THE SEAS.

Having battles hard to win on debut, Master Of The Seas produced a superb display at Newmarket, running away with the Superlative Stakes. William Buick's charge got upset in the stalls that day and was bumped right at the start. Yet, Buick's mount regathered his composure and showed a decent sprinter in Devious Company and clean set of heels in the final furlong.

Appleby and Buick won this race with Pinatubo 12 months ago, and I think Master Of The Seas will be a little too quick for his Irish rivals on Sunday.

master of the seas newmarket
Master Of The Seas surges clear of the chasing pack in the Superlative Stakes. (Getty)

Race 6 - Irish St Leger Tips


Read our feature preview of the 2020 Irish St Leger to see who we think will come out on top in the feature race on day two of Irish Champions Weekend.

If you want to watch this Classic via your mobile or tablet, then check out our Irish St Leger Live Streaming page.

Race 7 - Super Auction Sale Stakes Tips

Only one horse finished behind STREET KID in the lucrative Auction Stakes at Naas last month. Jessica Harrington's colt brought some good form into that race, having finished a short-head behind National Stakes contender, Laws Of Indices on debut, and flying home to win over six-and-a-half-furlongs at Cork. 

The soft ground at Naas may have contributed to Street Kid's poor showing last time out. Harrington has fitted cheek-pieces for the first time, the ground is lovely and Shane Foley's mount has won over this trip. I'm going to give Street Kid another chance.

Race 8 - Northfields Handicap Tips


Degraves E/W5:50pm Irish Stallion Farms EBF "Northfields" Handicap (Premier Handicap) 1m2fGET 16/1 HERE
+18 only. Gamble Responsibly. Ts and Cs apply. Ladbrokes is operated by LC International Limited (Suite 6, Atlantic Suites, Gibraltar) and licensed (ref 54743) and regulated by the British Gambling Commission for persons gambling in Great Britain. For persons gambling outside Great Britain, Ladbrokes is licensed (ref 010, 012) by the Government of Gibraltar and regulated by the Gibraltar Gambling Commissioner.

I'm surprised to see DEGRAVES sitting so far down the betting, as he drops into handicap company for the first time. 

Joseph O'Brien looked to have a Group One contender on his hands when Degraves won a Group Three on his final juvenile start. Having been well-beaten on his reappearance, Wayne Lordan's mount then finished less than two lengths behind Armory in the Royal Whip Stakes here over course-and-distance.

Considering what he's achieved and his top-level experience, this opening handicap mark of 104 is by no means unmanageable for Degraves. He'll be my final each-way bet of the day.
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