It's a big day for Betfair Ambassador Joseph O'Brien who has a dozen runners on the first day of Irish Champions weekend as well as Galileo Chrome in the St Leger at Doncaster...
"He looks ready for this Group 1 opportunity now and I think the longer trip and return to a sounder surface will both suit him."
- Joseph O'Brien on Galileo Chrome
Not without a chance with step up in trip suiting
13:50 - State Of Rest
State Of Rest has been progressive this season. He finished on the heels of the leaders in the Tyros Stakes at Leopardstown and we took a chance by dropping him back to six furlongs for the Ballyhane Stakes at Naas last time. That shorter trips caught him out and while he finished off very well, it was too late in the day. Stepping back up to seven furlongs will definitely suit and while he'll be a big price, I could see him running well.
Decent ground and step up in trip in his favour
15:35 - Galileo Chrome
Galileo Chrome is a horse we've always really liked and it has been great to see him progress so well this season. We had intended to throw him in at the deep end for the Irish Derby, but a stone bruise ruled him out on the day. We've brought him along steadily since then and he has been impressive in his last two starts. He looks ready for this Group 1 opportunity now and I think the longer trip and return to a sounder surface will both suit him. We would have preferred a lower draw, but hopefully that won't be a big factor on the day. We're excited to see how he runs and are hopeful he'll acquit himself very well.
Improved since debut win and can run a big race
14:00 - Earth Strike
Earth Strike made a really impressive debut when winning over this course and distance last month. We always thought she was a very nice filly, but we weren't sure she'd be sharp enough to go close on debut, so it was a really pleasant surprise in that regard. We think she has improved from that run and I'd be hopeful that she can run a big race.
Wide open and all three have their chances
14:35 - Arthurian Fame, Grandmaster Flash and Winner Takes Itall
Arthurian Fame has been a smart dual-purpose performer and has run well enough in some big handicaps such as this to suggest he can be competitive off this sort of mark. He is well drawn and if things drop kindly for him on the day he is capable of running a big race.
Grandmaster Flash has been running well in staying handicaps all season and he is capable of going close in one when things go right for him.
Winner Takes Itall has shaped a bit better than the result in his last two starts, with his saddle slipping in the closing stages of his latest run. This sort of test should suit him and hopefully he can run a solid race.
Plenty of ability in New York Girl but she needs to show it
15:10 - New York Girl and Wilds Dreams
We had big hopes for New York Girl this season and they were very much intact after a lovely first run in the Irish 1,000 Guineas, but she has disappointed us in the Irish Derby and the Irish Oaks since then. We are looking to get her back on track by returning her to a mile here. We know there is loads of ability in there and hopefully she can show it in this.
Wilds Dreams is a really interesting filly that came to us from Argentina earlier this year. She was amongst the best fillies on turf down there and I've been very happy with how she has settled into the new regime here since she joined us. We won't be burdening her with big expectations for her Irish debut, but it would be great to see her run a nice race that she can build on next time.
Two promising colts with improvement still likely
15:40 - Snapraeterea and Liffey River
Snapraeterea has improved with each of his four starts and ran a lovely race to finish fourth in the Futurity Stakes at the Curragh last time. Returning to a mile will suit him and I could definitely seeing finding some more improvement. If he does, he might not be too far away at the finish.
Liffey River is a well-bred colt that made it second-time lucky when winning a maiden at Punchestown last week. He won in better style than the bare winning margin suggests and he is a good colt. We're looking forward to seeing how he fares in this much stronger company and are hopeful he can be competitive.
Patrick has a good draw and looks to have a leading chance
17:15 - Patrick Sarsfield, Buckhurst and Mr Mooj
Patrick Sarsfield has already had an excellent season, winning three times and finishing third in a Group 1 in Germany last time. We have always had it in our minds to try him at a mile-and-a-half and this looks a good spot to do it. The draw has been kind to him and his form entitles him to a leading chance under his penalty.
Buckhurst won the Alleged Stakes earlier this year, but disappointed in the Tattersalls Gold Cup last time. He has always been a laid-back colt, so we've decided to put blinkers on him to see if they sharpen him. He finished a good second in this race last year and can hopefully run another big one this year.
Mr Mooj has plenty to find with the market leaders here, but will be suited by the return to a mile-and-a-half and can hopefully advance his rating.
Needs a bit of luck but she can run a big race
17:50 - Music To My Ears
Music To My Ears has had a productive season already, winning a premier handicap at the Curragh and finishing a close second in another. We've had our eye on this race for her and while she'll need some luck given that she is likely to be dropped in from her low draw, if she gets it I'd be hopeful she can run another big race.