Sea Of Class denies Forever Together the Oaks double at The Curragh

Darley Irish Oaks winner Sea Of Class. Credit: David Betts

On a day when English-based trainers dominated proceeding at The Curragh, the William Haggas-trained Sea Of Class (11/4 2f) won the Group 1 Darley Irish Oaks over 1m 4f, giving the successful jockey, James Doyle, a treble on the day when claiming the fillies’ Classic.

The winner, successful in two Listed contests at Newbury, was held up at the rear of the field until the two-furlong pole, then came wide under James Doyle to cheekily nab the Investec Oaks winner, Forever Together (7/2), who narrowly failed to complete the Oaks double. Willie McCreery’s Mary Tudor (25/1) ran the race of her life to gain third place, one-and-a half-lengths behind the runner-up.

Forever Together’s stable companion, Magic Wand, winner of May’s Cheshire Oaks, started the odds-on favourite at 10/11, but could only finish fifth.

Fermoy, Co. Cork-born English-based trainer David O’Meara plundered the €100,000 Tote Scurry Handicap with Intisaab (8/1) under Danny Tudhope. The seven-year-old winner had three-quarters-of-a-length to spare over Ardhoomey (12/1) in second with another British challenger, Gunmental (2/1f), claiming third for David Barron and Irish-born jockey Oisín Orr.

O’Meara brought up a quick double when Larchmont Lad (4/1) took the Friarstown Stud Minstrel Stakes (Group 2) – this time ridden by James Doyle – while just for good measure, O’Meara also had the runner-up in So Beloved (5/2). The Aidan O’Brien-trained favourite, St Patrick’s Day, who joined Ballydoyle earlier this season from the USA, could only manage a disappointing fifth place.

Scottish trainer Mark Johnston, a regular visitor to Ireland, won the Jebel Ali Racecourse and Stables Anglesey Stakes, a Group 3 race, with Marie’s Diamond (7/2). The 2-year-old filly was positioned mid division throughout most of the race as the Séamie Heffernan-ridden 1.6m guineas purchase Fantasy (13/8f) blitzed the pace until the two-furlong pole. Marie’s Diamond then overtook the pacesetter, and despite the late challenge of Viadera (9/4), held on for a two-and-three-quarter-length success.

Jim Bolger and Kevin Manning teamed up to win the opener, The Club Godolphin Irish EBF Maiden, when the Teofilo filly Guaranteed (4/1) held off the 9/4 favourite Mount Tabora from the Aidan O’Brien stable by a head, with Giga White (5/2) a further three lengths back in third.

Ice Cold In Alex (9/2) beat Kailee (9/4f) in the Extra.ie Handicap over seven furlongs for Tattersalls Irish 2000 Guineas winning trainer Ken Condon and jockey Niall McCullagh, with Casimiro (5/1) three-quarters of a length further back in third.

 

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