Irish Derby: Timeform's runner-by-runner guide

Horses break from the stalls
There's top-class action on Saturday

Timeform bring you their comprehensive runner-by-runner guide to the Irish Derby at the Curragh on Saturday and pick out their 1-2-3.

"...big player now getting to tackle a mile and a half..."

Timeform on High Definition

Irish Derby
15:45 Curragh, Saturday
Live on ITV

1. Arturo Toscanini (Aidan O'Brien/ Emmet McNamara)
Debut winner who displayed useful form this term when second in the Gallinule Stakes here and when seventh to Kemari in the Queen's Vase at Royal Ascot recently. Plenty more needed here, though.

2. Earlswood (Johnny Murtagh/ Ben Coen)
Has been progressing well this season and beat Arturo Toscanini by a length and three-quarters in the Gallinule Stakes over a mile and a quarter here last month. Not to be underestimated with this step up to a mile and a half sure to suit.

3. Fernando Vichi (Donnacha O'Brien/ Gavin Ryan)
Useful colt who got back to winning ways in a listed race over a mile and a half at Leopardstown earlier this month, beating The Mediterranean by three-quarters of a length. That form leaves him with lots to find here but he has more to offer.

4. High Definition (Aidan O'Brien/ Ryan Moore)
Top-class prospect who finished with a flourish to win twice here in 2020. Shaped encouragingly on his return when a strong-finishing third in the Dante Stakes at York. Big player now getting to tackle a mile and a half.

5. Hurricane Lane (Charlie Appleby/ William Buick)
Smart colt who showed plenty of guts when making it three from three in the Dante Stakes at York. Finished a good third to Adayar in the Derby at Epsom and may do better still on this track. High on the shortlist.

6. Lone Eagle (Martyn Meade/ Frankie Dettori)
Signed off a progressive two-year-old campaign by landing a Group 3 at Newmarket and got right back on track with an impressive four-length win in a listed race at Goodwood last month. Firmly in the mix.

7. Mac Swiney (Jim Bolger/ Kevin Manning)
Very smart colt who notched up a second Group 1 when making all in the Irish 2000 Guineas here last month. Wasn't at his best when fourth in the Derby at Epsom but should prove fully effective at a mile and a half, and he looks the sort to bounce back.

8. Matchless (Aidan O'Brien/ Michael Hussey)
Useful colt but was only eighth of nine to Mohaafeth in the Hampton Court Stakes at Royal Ascot and faces an uphill task in this company.

9. Mojo Star (Richard Hannon/ Rossa Ryan)
Runner-up on all three starts, most notably in the Derby last time. Improved greatly for the step up to a mile and a half at Epsom, finishing four and a half lengths behind Adayar, and he is very much in the shake-up.

10. Van Gogh (Aidan O'Brien/ Colin Keane)
Smart colt who arrives on back of creditable runs in Irish 2000 Guineas here and in the Prix du Jockey Club at Chantilly. No forlorn hope with this longer trip promising to suit.

11. Wordsworth (Aidan O'Brien/ Seamie Heffernan)
Improving colt who opened his account in a maiden here before twice finishing runner-up, including when staying on strongly in the Queen's Vase at Royal Ascot recently. Has more to offer and is entitled to respect.

Timeform's Analyst Verdict

High Definition looked a colt of rare promise when going unbeaten in 2020 and can confirm himself a top-class colt now he gets the chance to tackle a mile and a half. He can give Aidan O'Brien a fourth win in the past five runnings. Hurricane Lane didn't look at ease at Epsom yet still finished third to stable-companion Adayar so is sure to be on the premises, with Mac Swiney and Van Gogh right in the mix too.

1. High Definition
2. Hurricane Lane
3. Mac Swiney

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