Irish Oaks 2014: Tarfasha’s hopes rest on rain holding off

The filly wants good ground at the Curragh

Taghrooda looked clearly the best of this crop of three-year-old fillies when winning the Oaks decisively. However, though the decision to run her against her elders in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot next Saturday instead of in the Darley Irish Oaks at the Curragh tomorrow afternoon is bold and exciting, it does at the same time deprive us of a chance to see whether she can confirm her dominance of her own age group away from Epsom.

Aidan O’Brien’s Marvellous, a disappointing sixth after looking so good in the Irish 1,000 Guineas, did not handle the Epsom gradients, while it is not entirely fanciful to suggest that the placed horses, Tarfasha and Volume, might turn the tables on Taghrooda on a more conventional track.

Keeping Taghrooda for the King George makes sense if Sheikh Hamdan al Maktoum is convinced the race can be safely left to Tarfasha (he owns both fillies) and listening to trainer Dermot Weld and jockey Pat Smullen today, they seemed to be more worried about what the weather might do this weekend than any of the opposition.

Tarfasha (5.45, Curragh) wants good ground, but Weld has a back-up if one of the severe storms forecast strikes Co Kildare; Vote Often, in her element on soft ground and expected to relish this step-up in trip, is a 16-1 outsider well worth keeping an eye on if the rains come.

Tapestry, Bracelet and Palace are other O’Brien challengers with chances while Beyond Brilliance will be ridden by the trainer’s 18-year-old daughter, Ana, just the second woman ever to ride in an Irish classic.

With a quarter of a million up for grabs and weights partially governed by a horse’s price at auction, the Weatherbys Super Sprint is an opportunity for bargain buyers to be handsomely rewarded for their shrewdness.

Richard Fahey and Richard Hannon each run five, including market leaders Realtra and Tiggy Wiggy. Bond’s Girl (3.50, Newbury) would appear to be one of Fahey’s less fancied runners according to jockey bookings, but he ran better than his final position suggests at Royal Ascot and is a tempting each-way prospect.

Al Kazeem (2.40, Newbury), winner of three Group Ones last summer, takes it nice and easy on his return to racing after proving sub-fertile at stud. Much bigger tests await, including the Juddmonte at York next month.

For information regarding the QIPCO British Champions Series visit: britishchampionsseries.com

Life and Style
love + sex
Life and Style
Tikka Masala has been overtaken by Jalfrezi as the nation's most popular curry
food + drink
News
people
Voices
A propaganda video shows Isis forces near Tikrit
voicesAdam Walker: The Koran has violent passages, but it also has others that explicitly tells us how to interpret them
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Online Sales and Customer Services Associate

£14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Full time and Part time positio...

Ashdown Group: IT Manager - Salesforce / Reports / CRM - North London - NfP

£45000 per annum: Ashdown Group: An established and reputable Not for Profit o...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Ledger & Credit Control Assistant

£14000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Ledger & Credit Control...

Recruitment Genius: Project Administrator

£16000 - £19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Project Administrator is requ...

Day In a Page

Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn