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A disappointing turnout for the Irish St Leger means just five runners go to post for Sunday’s Group 1 at the Curragh.
Kyprios, last year’s winner, is the standout name as the staying superstar makes his belated seasonal reappearance. 2022 St Leger hero Eldar Eldarov, Curragh Cup queen Emily Dickinson, Royal Ascot victor Dawn Rising and Levmoss Stakes scorer Yashin complete the line up.
While it may be the smallest field for the Classic this century, a deep dive into the history books will hopefully help point us in the direction of this year’s winner.
Irish St Leger odds can be found on the Paddy Power website and Paddy Power app, otherwise the key trends and a tip based off the big-race stats are below.
Irish St Leger trends
Despite being a Classic, the Irish St Leger is open to horses aged three and over – and seven of the last 10 winners of the race were aged four or older. The four-year-olds have been statistically the most successful in that period, accounting for four wins including the last three in a row.
A big concern for backers of Kyprios is that the last 10 winners were running off a break of 20 to 49 days. Interestingly, seven of those had their last run within the last 24 days.
The last 10 winners of the Irish St Leger finished in the top three last time out, while six of those were victorious on their final appearance before heading to the Curragh.
Seven of the last 10 winners had a rating of 113 or higher. Search For A Song scored off a mark of 105 as a three-year-old in 2019 before returning as a 115-rated runner when successfully defending her crown the following year.
A further trend against Kyprios is that the last 10 winners of the Irish St Leger had at least three runs over the season, while eight of those had been first past the post on at least one occasion before the Classic.
Kyprios is the classiest horse in the field by quite some margin, having stamped his authority on the staying division in 2022, but the five-year-old has to buck a whole host of trends to retain his crown due to his lengthy lay-off.
In fact, none of the five runners tick all the boxes, which suggests this year’s renewal could be wide open. Eldar Eldarov, Emily Dickinson and DAWN RISING meet the most stats so Joseph O’Brien’s outsider could deliver a career-best effort in his toughest assignment to date.
Irish Champions Festival Tips
- Irish St Leger tips and runner-by-runner guide to Curragh 4.35 on Sunday
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- Horse Racing Tips: Ryan McCue’s ante-post Irish Champions Festival preview
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