Best bets for the horse racing this weekend

I found two winners from three bets at HQ last night which was handy and paid for a beer or six. Into the weekend we go and the weather looks like being pretty rotten for most of the UK with rain forecast just about everywhere. It certainly aint helping England in the Ashes at Old Trafford as they look to level the series, no doubt will be causing problems at The Open over at Royal Liverpool and of course needs to be considered for the horse racing as the going descriptions could change significantly. I have three bets for Saturday afternoon and they are all out in Ireland, hopefully the luck of the Irish will be with me.

Best bets for the horse racing at the Curragh

The going at the Curragh is officially yielding to soft in places and they will likely get more rain during Saturday. Owned by King Power Racing the Tim Easterby-trained six-year-old Art Power is out again having been fourth in the G.1 July Cup last weekend. He makes the trip across the Irish Sea for the 5f Group Two Barberstown Castle Sapphire Stakes at 3.10. He is of course unbeaten in three starts at the Curragh, most recently in the G.2 Greenlands Stakes in May (tipped on here) though all those runs were over six-furlongs. He only has one way of running so you can expect to see the grey up the pointed end from the off. I have tipped him more than once, was a member of my Dirty Dozen in 2020 and I am a bit of a fan I should confess. I am on at 6-4. Tim Easterby's assistant and son William said in the build-up "He'll go over to Ireland on Thursday night to run at the Curragh because he loves the place. He's down to five furlongs there but I think he'll run a big race. He seems really well and, while I think he prefers cut in the ground, I don't think it's vital, although it slows the others down. It's an amazing thing when you get horses for courses where you can run him somewhere and it works."

Savethelastdance is one of four runners for Aidan O’Brien in a field of eight declared for the 1m4f Group One Juddmonte Irish Oaks at 3.45 and is odds-on, not that surprisingly. I can't back her at the price. The trainer seems convinced Be Happy will win a decent race sooner rather than later saying this week "We've always liked her, but she has just been very unlucky. We had her in at Epsom and she just kicked a wall and we were ready to run her somewhere else afterwards and she got an infection in her hind leg. But we've been very happy with her over the last three weeks. She's a filly we've always liked." She was second to Eternal Hope in the Listed Lingfield Oaks Trial and if there is one in here capable of putting in a performance at a big price it is her. She has plenty of form on soft going and at 28-1 is the each-way punt.

The Group Two 1m6f Comer Group International Curragh Cup has attracted a fair field but looks likely to go to the lads from Ballydoyle as well. Emily Dickinson was a fair fourth in the Gold Cup at Royal Ascot last month and back on softer ground over a trip that suits her nicely she looks a solid bet to me. I actually expected her to be shorter than the 15-8 that she is to provide trainer Aidan O’Brien with an eighth Curragh Cup success. I am on. Aidan O’Brien said “It looks a strong race. I think she stayed in the Gold Cup, I don’t think the trip was a problem. She likes an ease in the ground so she’ll appreciate that. She’s had a bit of an easy time since Ascot because we didn’t think the ground was going to be as it is, but we are letting her take her chance, obviously. The Irish Leger is definitely in the back of our minds for her.”

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