'Natalee' and 'harbour' look bankers
Forest Natalee and Droopys Harbour have been the big two in the Sporting Press Oaks since the very start and they are expected to confirm their status with emphatic semi-final victories this evening at Shelbourne.
Natalee's blistering early pace has won her a special place in the hearts of the Dublin racegoers and it is almost a foregone conclusion that she will lead her first heat rivals a merry dance this time.
Forest Natalee is not the strongest stayer in the world but she doesn't get picked off too often either. She will be retired to the paddocks by owner Kevin Hutton once she completes her Oaks campaign but I reckon she will qualify for one more race by showing the way home to Tibet and Cabra Angel.
Trained by John Linehan, Droopys Harbour will also be a hot favourite for the second heat. She also has brilliant early pace but there is nothing wrong with her stamina. She has a perfect draw on the inside and may show the way to Coolavanny Pet and Ardrahan Zindi.
Limerick's Kerry Agribusiness St Leger reaches the second round stage this evening and it should be a profitable gathering for Graham Holland with Sonic, Hovex Mick, Clonbrien Hero and Drive On Tipp all likely heat winners.
Others worth nothing are Peter Cronin's Swithins Brae and the Paul Hennessy duo of Jaytee Yankee and Away Jet.
Take Pat Hogan's Aulton Jet to move closer to completing a double in the Fair Warrior Sprint at Mullingar where Junior Jet is drawn to win the other heat.