Tag Archive for: Above The Curve

Above The Curve could book Oaks ticket at Chester

Above The Curve puts her Classic aspirations to the test when she lines up in the Weatherbys Bloodstock Pro Cheshire Oaks at Chester on Wednesday.

Third in a Leopardstown maiden on debut, the Joseph O’Brien-trained daughter of American Pharoah got off the mark when returned to the Dublin track for her reappearance and could continue on her upwards trajectory towards either Epsom or the Curragh with a strong performance in this Listed contest.

Having moved up to 10 furlongs last time, the three-year-old tries an extra two furlongs and, fresh from saddling a big double at the Curragh on Monday, her handler is looking forward to how she handles the tight turns of the Roodee.

“The timing is good and it will be nice to get her around a track like that to give her experience if she is going to go to Epsom,” said O’Brien.

“If she handles the track and things go well then she might be an Epsom filly. She’s a fine big filly and I like her.”

Hello Jumeirah and Night Battle both impressed with victories on the all-weather on debut and now take a step up in class on their second starts.

The latter is trained by Simon and Ed Crisford and showed more professionalism the further she went at Lingfield last month. A 475,000 guineas Kingman yearling, she is bred to be useful animal and her training team are eager to see how much she has improved on her second outing.

William Hill St. Leger Festival – Day Two – Doncaster Racecourse
Trainer Simon Crisford is looking forward to seeing his Night Battle run at Chester (Mike Egerton/PA)

Simon Crisford said: “She’s in good form at home, obviously it is a step up in class and trip, but we’ll find out where we are with her. We’ve been very pleased with her since her novice win.”

John Gosden’s Morning Poem could only finish fifth in a Kempton conditions race last time, but represents a team that have won two of the last four runnings of this race, while Aidan O’Brien has tasted victory in this recognised Oaks trial three times since 2015 and relies on Thoughts Of June, who finished second to Above The Curve at Leopardstown most recently.

The Queen saw her Derby candidate Reach For The Moon ruled out of the premier Classic on Tuesday but could unearth another Group-level contender when Michael Bell’s Improvise makes her return to the track.

Bell saddled the dam to a pair of Listed victories and is hoping that her offspring can follow in her footsteps and develop into a fine operator this season.

“I’m hopeful the step up in trip will suit her, her mother who I trained stayed well and improved from two to three and she’s a very similar type physically to her dam, so hopefully she’ll perform to somewhere near the same level,” said Bell.

“There are many bridges to cross before then (Ribblesdale, Royal Ascot), but if she was to run well here then that would open that window. She needs to perform to a Pattern-class level on Wednesday first.

“It’s nice to have these nice prospects, especially when you’ve trained the mother as well and she improved with age and we’re hopeful Improvise will do the same.”

Moon De Vega and Makinmedoit are two others who arrive here having won when last sighted, with the latter impressive when a five-length scorer at Brighton only last week, while the field is rounded off by Typewriter and Wynter Wildes.

Above The Curve shows Classic potential at Leopardstown

Joseph O’Brien looks to have a very nice prospect on his hands in the shape of Above The Curve, who was cut to 16-1 for the Cazoo Oaks following an easy victory in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Fillies Maiden at Leopardstown.

Available at 40-1 for Epsom with Betfair prior to the race, the daughter of American Pharoah cruised around on the outside under Shane Crosse before quickly putting the race to bed.

Her dam is an unraced half-sister to Giant’s Causeway and the way the 6-5 favourite sprinted two-and-three-quarter-lengths clear of Thoughts Of June it looks like she has plenty of the family’s ability.

“We think a lot of her. She had a really good run last year and she obviously has an amazing pedigree,” said O’Brien.

“We couldn’t ask for more, we’ll see where we go now but we think she’s an Oaks-type filly.

“She’s a very big filly so we’ll be managing her gently, maybe something like the Blue Wind would suit.

“We won’t be throwing her in at the deep end, we’ll take baby steps with her.

“She really is huge, in a way she’s nearly too big and we’ll have to manage her correctly. She hasn’t done anything wrong so far anyway.”

Boundless Ocean (left) was narrowly denied on the first day of the season but went one better
Boundless Ocean (left) was narrowly denied on the first day of the season but went one better (Lorraine O’Sullivan/PA)

Boundless Ocean atoned for a narrow defeat at the Curragh on his seasonal return when winning the aparto Student (C & G) Maiden.

Jim Bolger’s colt had shown smart form in a couple of Group races at two but was beaten a head by Michael O’Callaghan’s newcomer Malex on the first day of the season.

Kevin Manning kicked clear a furlong out on the 5-4 market leader, with the Johnny Murtagh-trained debutant Flying Dolphin keeping him honest in going down by three-quarters of a length.

Snowfall’s brother Newfoundland was badly outpaced in the straight before staying on nicely when the penny dropped.

“The boss is absolutely delighted with him and the target now will be the Irish Guineas,” said Bolger’s daughter, Una Manning.

“He probably just needed the run the last day.”

Aidan O’Brien dominated the Student Raceday Fillies Maiden, with the more experienced Lullaby (4-1) holding off newcomer Only, the first foal of Winter.

“It was grand that she won, we liked her last year and she has a high enough rating,” said O’Brien.

“We were delighted with her and she’ll come back here for the Guineas Trial over a mile.

“I’m delighted with the second filly, she ran a lovely race and won’t mind stepping up whenever. She was a bit green down the inside but ran a lovely race too.

“We’ll give her a little bit of time, we won’t rush her, and she’ll go back for a maiden. She could be an Irish Oaks filly, when she goes up to that trip she’ll be very happy.”