Matt Chapman | Irish 1,000 guineas
Just The Judge ran an absolute cracker in the 1,000 Guineas at Newmarket and she looked very much like the winner inside the final furlong. She is a big filly and she can only improve. That was a cracking run and Jamie Spencer is very bullish about her chances. The horse is bred to stay well and that was a good run to come second to Sky Lantern, who remember was a winner in a Group One in Ireland as a juvenile.
Maureen’s stamina is not convincing. She didn’t run badly in the 1,000 Guineas and plenty of punters noted her down as unlucky in that race.
But why was she unlucky?
Because Olivier Peslier had been told to hold her up at the back of the field, and when you have a horse like that you can often be unlucky. Richard Hughes is booked for Sunday but will the Irish jockey do us any favours on the hold-up horse at the weekend? No, he’s going to be boxed in and he’s going to have to work hard to get the gaps. Maureen is the type of horse that could win it on the bridle but it isn’t likely.
If Viztoria runs for Eddy Lynam she’s a very interesting horse. She hasn’t hit the headlines, maybe perhaps because she is trained by Eddy and not Aidan O’Brien or someone like that, but she’s very interesting.
The boring choice is the favourite but it is hard to see Just The Judge getting beat and she should give Charlie Hills his first Classic winner.
Just three favourites have won in the last 10 years but statistics like that aren’t worrying. It all depends which horses go across and it is race by race so those kind of statistics are not worrying in the slightest.
What that might tell you, if you want to take something out of it, is that if you have run well in the 1,000 Guineas at Newmarket, it probably takes a little more out of you than perhaps people think.
Despite that Just The Judge is the best horse, and the opposition here is not all that great.
Viztoria is a promising horse, but this is a Classic. What I mean by not that great is that, every trainer would like Viztoria in their yard but is she really a Classic winner? I can’t see her beating Just The Judge.
Snow Queen would be a very disappointing winner of a Classic as she is thoroughly exposed.
Maureen’s stamina isn’t convincing.
Big Break for Dermot Weld could turn up on the day, she’s unbeaten but she hasn’t run this season and could well need it.
Just The Judge is a worthy favourite and should win.