'Honey' faces difficult first round Oaks task
Published 12/05/2016 | 02:30
As anticipated, the Sporting Press Irish Oaks finished up with 60 entries and some terrific clashes have been lined up for the first round.
The main attraction, of course, will be the defending champion Ballydoyle Honey on her return from season and she will occupy trap six in Heat 6 where the main threat is likely to be provided by Pat Buckley's Brinkleys Katie.
The first of these clashes will be in the opening heat where two real eye-catchers last Saturday, Tyrur Caroline and Leamaneigh Mags, will occupy the inside and outside traps respectively.
Both were returning from lengthy lay-offs and if they can maintain the levels of their performances on Saturday night they will be challenging for favouritism for the classic.
Ballinakil Clare, which was favourite for the Puppy Oaks decider, will be opposed by Leezie Lindsay in Heat 7, while Clare's final conqueror Sidarian Pearl appears to have an easier task in Heat 5.
Meanwhile, the second round of the William Hill English Derby will commence at Wimbledon tonight, while the remaining eight heats will be run on Saturday.
There will be six Irish-trained runners involved tonight and we can expect to have at least two or three winners.
Pat Buckley's Droopys Roddick is likely to step up on his relatively tame first round run and he can lead home Do It For Twiggy and California in Heat 2.
Pat Curtin's Peregrine Falcon and Fraser Black's Droopys Awesome clash in Heat 5 and here Peregrine should have the superior early pace, while Droopys can also qualify. Paul Hennessy's Jaytee Dutch can see off Making Paper in Heat 7, while Buckley's Lenson Rocky and Peter Cronin's Must Be Jack will play big roles in the final heat.