Joseph O'Brien has some leading chances at the Curragh on Sunday, not least with Thundering Nights in the Group 1 Pretty Polly Stakes...
"The big aim of bringing her back into training this year was for her to be competitive in Group 1 company and her form entitles her to be in the mix in this race."
- Joseph O'Brien on Thundering Nights
Looks useful at home
Point Gellibrand is a horse that works well and it was unfortunate that he was withdrawn after an incident in the stalls prior to his intended debut at Leopardstown a couple of weeks ago. We are looking forward to seeing what he can do on the track, as he certainly works like a useful horse at home.
Improvement to come after winning debut
We never tend to burden our two-year-olds with big expectations on their debuts, so it was great to see Velocidad produce the sort of winning performance that she did on her debut at Fairyhouse. She had been working well, but we didn't think she'd know enough to do that on debut. There should be plenty of improvement to come and while this represents a big step up in class, I'm hopeful that she'll acquit herself well.
Conditions set to suit and she could run a big race
Thundering Nights has been a brilliant filly for us and was unlucky not to win a Grade 2 at Belmont earlier this month. She was interfered with on the first bend and got a bit further back than ideal. She finished off like a train in the closing stages, but came up a nose short. It was a fantastic run and she has come back from it in great shape. The big aim of bringing her back into training this year was for her to be competitive in Group 1 company and her form entitles her to be in the mix in this race. Conditions will suit and hopefully she'll run a big race.
Big chance on back of career-best effort
Pondus produced a career-best effort to go very close off top-weight in a handicap over this course and distance last time. That run entitles him to a big chance back in this company and I'd be hopeful that he'll be heavily involved in the finish.
Should remain competitive
Vultan went up 14lb for winning at Roscommon earlier this season and acquitted himself well off his revised mark when a close fourth in the Cork Derby last time. He did the best of those that raced prominently that day and while he has been put up another 2lb, I think he should be capable of being competitive again.
Strong maiden but she should improve
Saran spoiled her chance by missing the kick quite badly on debut. Considering that, she ended up showing plenty of promise and ran well despite greenness. She should improve from that, but this is a very strong maiden and even significant improvement probably wouldn't be enough to put her in the finish.