1000 Guineas Tips: O'Brien to continue classic dominance

A competitive field line up for the 1000 Guineas at Newmarket on Sunday.
A competitive field line up for the 1000 Guineas at Newmarket on Sunday.

Steve Chambers takes an in-depth look at Sunday's 1000 Guineas from Newmarket, and picks out his best bet for a fascinating renewal of the Group 1 Classic...

Aidan O'Brien has dominated the 1000 Guineas in recent seasons, having saddled three of the last four winners of the coveted Group 1 event, and the master of Ballydoyle will saddle second favourite Love in Sunday's delayed running of the fillies' Classic. Second in the betting behind race favourite Quadrilateral, Love has some very smart form on her CV, but she was comfortably beaten by the aforementioned Quadrilateral in last season's Fillies' Mile.

Unbeaten in three starts as a juvenile, Quadrilateral sets the standard for a wide open renewal of the Guineas, and Roger Charlton will certainly have her revved up for this event, as the daughter of Frankel attempts to extend her 100% record, but Love could potentially have more improvement to come in her three-year-old campaign, and O'Brien certainly knows how to get them ready for the big day.

Love will relish the quicker ground at Flat HQ, as she may have just struggled to see out the trip in good to soft ground in the Fillies' Mile, but having won the Group 1 Moyglare Stud Stakes at the Curragh in good ground, and having won on good to firm ground earlier in her two-year-old campaign, she will relish the rattling fast ground at Newmarket, and that could see her reverse the form with Quadrilateral.

There's no doubting that Quadrilateral has the potential to be the next superstar donning the Prince Khalid Abdullah silks, and the highest rated performer in the field has to come into calculations, but she is yet to show that she can deliver on good to firm ground, so with that in mind, it's worth siding with Love of the fancied duo in the betting.

Another race from last season that throws up some vital clues is the Cheveley Park Stakes. The Newmarket Group 1 saw Millisle get the better of Raffle Prize, and that pair lock horns once again on Sunday afternoon. A fine winner of the Queen Mary Stakes at Royal Ascot, Raffle Prize then followed up with a superb win in the Duchess Of Cambridge Stakes, but the Mark Johnston-trained filly was no match for Jessica Harrington's Millisle, who bounded clear to win the Cheveley Park Stakes.

Both challengers have failed to be out the front two in their careers to date (Raffle Prize - 3 wins and 3 seconds & Millisle - 3 wins and 2 seconds), so you have to respect their chances, and many punters will see them as the solid each-way options in the field, but both may just lack the class of the front two in the betting, and they may have to find themselves battling it out for minor honours this weekend.

Richard Hannon tasted a shock victory two years ago with Billesdon Brook, who prevailed in the 2018 renewal, and he will saddle the interesting Cloak Of Spirits this weekend. An impressive winner of a maiden event at Ascot on debut, she then put up an improved effort on her last start last season when finishing third in the Rockfel Stakes at Newmarket. Ridden prominently, she just lacked that final late surge to get the better of Daahyeh that day, but it's top notch form, and if she can be on the front end from the outset, she could well get a few of her rivals struggling as they get to the crucial part of the race.

In a field awash with quality, Tom Dascombe's Boomer is a classy performer, but she was well beaten in the Fillies' Mile, so has work to do in terms of turning the tables Quadrilateral and Love, while the John Gosden-trained Simmering has only had two career runs, so she may lack the experience to produce the goods at the top level.

Not since Blue Bunting's victory in 2011 have Godolphin claimed success in the 1000 Guineas, but the boys in blue will unleash a dual-pronged attack in the shape of Final Song and Summer Romance, and of that pair Final Song makes more appeal, but has form to find with Raffle Prize from their Duchess Of Cambridge clash, where Final Song finished third.

However, this could be a race dominated by the front few in the betting, and it's eye-catching to see Aidan O'Brien only saddling a solitary runner in the shape of Love in the fillies' Classic, and it must mean that he fancies that she could be good enough to hand him a fourth win in five years, so Love is our selection in a fascinating renewal.


1000 Guineas, 15:35 Newmarket, Sunday 7th June - back Love at 4/1

1000 Guineas
Love silk


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