Hermosa completes 1000 Guineas double

Hermosa, winner of the Tattersalls Irish 1000 Guineas, pictured with winning connections.

Hermosa (5/2f) completed the 1000 Guineas double when winning the Tattersalls Irish 1000 Guineas at The Curragh on Sunday, in the process making her trainer Aidan O’Brien the outright winning-most trainer in the history of the fillies Classic.

The three-year-old daughter of Galileo, who won the Qipco 1000 Guineas at Newmarket earlier in the month when ridden by the trainer’s son, Donnacha, led from the start today under Ryan Moore.

Michael Bell’s Pretty Pollyanna (9/1), under Frankie Dettori, challenged for a time on the outside but the race favourite had plenty in reserve to power clear and cross the finishing line with a comfortable four-lengths in hand, with Foxtrot Live (25/1) running a blinder for Paddy Twomey, a length-and-a-half further back in third.

Hermosa’s win completed a Day 3 Group 1 double for O’Brien, Moore and the Coolmore partners as the brilliant filly Magical had lived up to her name earlier when putting up a scintillating performance in the Group 1 Tattersalls Ireland Gold Cup.

In a five-horse race, the daughter of Galileo, who was three-quarters-of-a-length second to Enable at the Breeders’ Cup meeting at Churchill Downs last November, was never in danger as her stable companion Flag Of Honour, who she had already beaten twice this season, made the running from the offset. The Ballydoyle pair soon found they had a substantial advantage over the rest of the field and the eventual winner comfortably passed her stable companion to power clear for a seven-length success.

Arizona (8/15f), a two-year-old son of No Nay Never, with Ryan Moore aboard, was an eight-length winner of the opening race, The Tally Ho Stud Irish EBF (C&G) Maiden over six furlongs, leading home an Aidan O’Brien-trained 1-2-3. King Of Athens (11/2) with Donnacha O’Brien was second, with New World Tapestry (8/1) two-and-a-quarter lengths behind in third. The winning trainer nominated the Coventry Stakes or the Chesham Stakes at Royal Ascot towards the end of next month as possible races for the colt.

Meanwhile, following the first race, the Ballydoyle-based handler confirmed that the Coolmore partners would supplement Sir Dragonet tomorrow for next Saturday’s Investec Epsom Derby, and stated that a decision about his participation in the 1m 4f Classic would then be made later in the week.

Baby Power (14/1), under Leigh Roche, were one-and-a-half-length winners of the Hanlon Concrete Handicap for Garry Caldwell. In a tight finish for the places, Polly Douglas (20/1) had a head to spare over Hee Haw (20/1), with Little Clarinet (10/1) half-a-length further back in fourth place.

Hathiq (5/2jf), despite an 11-pound hike in the weights for his recent win at Tipperary, ran out a three-and-three-quarter-lengths winner of The Curragh Official Opening Day Handicap over the minimum distance. Optionality (10/1) stayed on for second under Andrew Slattery, with Aleef (5/2jf) and Billy Lee a further half-a-length behind.

Eight-year-old Aussie Valentine (16/1), under three-pound claimer Tom Madden, saw off all latecomers in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF ‘Habitat’ Handicap over a mile. Adrian McGuinness’ brave inmate a six-time winner on the level prior to today, saw off Innamorare (13/2) and Crotchet (4/1f) in a blanket finish, with a total of one-length between the first three home.

The Boodles Handicap, Dermot Weld’s Dalton Highway (13/2) came very late under Andrew Slattery, to pip Mick Halford’s Tirmizi (11/1) by half-a-length, while the concluding race of the weekend at The Curragh, the 1m 2f Irish Stallion Farms EBF Maiden, was won by Telepathy.

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