Horse Racing tips: A runner-by-runner guide to Saturday’s Irish Oaks

Saturday's Classic goes to post at 7.15pm live on the box.



1. Cayenne Pepper (Jessica Harrington)

Jessica Harrington has a leading chance of claiming her first Irish Oaks with the Jon Kelly-owned CAYENNE PEPPER with jockey Shane Foley in the saddle. She is officially the highest rated filly in the contest on 111 and is having her second start of the season following her comeback run behind Magical in the Pretty Polly Stakes last month.

The daughter of Australia was an improving two-year-old, winning her first three starts, including the Flame Of Tara last August. She ended her juvenile season finishing fourth in the Fillies’ Mile at Newmarket and can only improve for her second start of 2020.

The extra two furlongs in the Oaks looks a positive and she has a serious chance of landing this classic.

2. Ennistymon (Aidan O’Brien)

Aidan O’Brien is looking to join Sir Michael Stoute by winning his sixth Irish Oaks and ENNISTYMON has a solid chance of making that happen this Saturday evening.

She is an improving three-year-old having only raced once last season, finishing seventh on debut here at the Curragh last June. She broke her maiden on her seasonal return at Leopardstown, before finishing an excellent second to Frankly Darling at Royal Ascot.

The daughter of Galileo found stable-mate Love too hot to handle at Epsom and with no concerns over the ground or distance, she looks the main player on current form.

3. Even So (Ger Lyons)

Having seen off the Ballydoyle challengers in the Irish 2000 Guineas, Ger Lyons is now on the same team, training EVEN SO for the Magnier and Shanahan families.

The daughter of Camelot broke her maiden at Gowran Park last September on her second start as a juvenile before been put away for the winter months.

She returned and finished third behind stable-mate Lemista in the Park Express, before her fifth place finish in the Irish 1000 Guineas. The step up in trip to 10 furlongs seemed to suit when edging out Laburnum to win the Naas Oaks Trial and she’s an each-way contender.



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4. Laburnum (Aidan O’Brien)

LABURNUM is the only filly without an official rating having raced only twice this season for trainer Aidan O’Brien, with jockey Declan McDonagh taking the ride this Saturday.

This daughter of Galileo never raced as a juvenile, but made a winning debut at Gowran Park last month with recent Killarney winner, Thunder Kiss back in second. She was only beaten at neck by Even So at Naas and the extra two furlongs should be a positive to suggest she’s an each-way player.

5. New York Girl (Joseph O’Brien)

Shane Crosse returns to the saddle on NEW YORK GIRL following her mid-division run in the Irish Derby behind Santiago last month.

She’s a filly with ability having broke her maiden in the Group 3 Weld Park Stakes last September and wasn’t beaten far in fourth place in the Irish 1000 Guineas last month.

She returns from a three-week break and hopefully runs a nice race for connections by knocking on the door of the places this Saturday night.

6. Passion (Aidan O’Brien)

PASSION has plenty of experience having raced three times as a juvenile and three times already this season, which included runs in the Ribblesdale and Epsom Oaks.

She finished third at Ascot behind Frankly Darling and fifth in the Oaks and has plenty to find with stable-mate Ennistymon. She looks the Ballydoyle pacesetter and it would be a serious surprise if Billy Lee’s mount was to land this Classic, but stranger things have happened in recent times.



7. Snow (Aidan O’Brien)

SNOW is another leading contender for Aidan O’Brien with jockey Mick Hussey taking the ride this Saturday evening. She’s a progressing filly, who is improving with racing following her maiden success here last month under Seamie Heffernan.

A quick reappearance saw her finish second to One Voice in the Blue Wind Stakes, before a good winning performance in the Munster Oaks at Cork two weeks ago – she looks a filly with plenty of stamina and could reach the frame.

8. Yaxeni (Ger Lyons)

The second of the Ger Lyons-trained runners is YAXENI with jockey Gary Carroll in the saddle for owners, SBA Racing.

The daughter of Maxios saw off Passion and Snow when making a winning debut at Cork last August, which was her only run as a juvenile. She returned this season with a third-place finish in the Blue Wind Stakes, before staying on for fourth place in the Munster Oaks.

She is two-one down in her battle with Snow, but doesn’t have too much to find with her from this season to reverse the form – she’s a big price and could represent some value in a match-bet against Snow.


The absence of Love from the contest has made this a good renewal of the Irish Oaks with Cayenne Pepper and Ennistymon the leading challengers.

The Aidan O’Brien filly has the best form of the two from this season, but there’s no doubt Jon Kelly’s filly will improve from the Pretty Polly and appreciate the extra-distance.

Snow, Even So and Laburnum can’t be discounted, but ENNISYMON has done enough this year behind Frankly Darling and Love to give jockey Wayne Lordan another classic for Coolmore team.

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