The first classic of the Irish flat racing season takes place at the Curragh as the colts line up here for the Irish 2000 Guineas. As with the Newmarket 2000 Guineas, this is run over a distance of one mile.
Now past its 100th Anniversary, this contest was first run back in 1921, and boasts an illustrious roll of honour including the likes of Gleneagles, Rock of Gibraltar and super sires, Dubawi and Sadlers Wells.
Irish 2000 Guineas Course Map
The one mile Irish 2000 Guineas begins at the end of the straight section to the west of the course. Runners turn slightly to the right before joining the home straight at around the four furlong mark.
Irish 2000 Guineas Past Winners
|Phoenix Of Spain
|Richard Hannon Sr.
|Saeed bin Suroor
About the Irish 2000 Guineas
The history of the British Classic races is littered with horses who attempted to win the Triple Crown. That’s a feat that is rarely attempted anymore and connections of the leading contenders of the 2000 Guineas at Newmarket are increasingly likely to enter their charges in the Irish 2000 Guineas at the Curragh, as opposed to the Epsom Derby. It should be noted that due to scheduling changes in 2020, horses couldn’t compete in both races that year.
INEXTRICABLY LINKED TO NEWMARKET
The Irish 2000 Guineas has a rich and proud history since its inauguration in 1921. It has always (and understandably) been linked with its equivalent at Newmarket given that it is run over the same distance of 1 mile and often includes several of the leading contenders from the British race. The three week gap between the two races is very deliberate as it is thought to be a perfect interval for horses to compete in both.
That gap was only introduced relatively recently in the history of the Irish 2000 Guineas. The race’s organisers have always tried to attract the very best three-year-old milers though and in total nine horses have completed the Newmarket/Curragh double up to and including the 2023 renewal.
Dual Irish And English 2000 Guineas Winners up to 2023
|Henry The Navigator
|Rock Of Gibraltar
|Michael Kinane/Johnny Murtagh
|Rodrigo de Triano
|Richard Hannon Snr
|Pat Eddery/Michael Kinane
|Don’t Forget Me
|Richard Hannon Snr
|John Sutcliffe Jnr
AIDAN O’BRIEN AN OBVIOUS PLACE TO START
Punters looking to make some profit from the bookies with the Irish 2000 Guineas have a very obvious place to start – horses trained by the brilliant Aidan O’Brien. He has saddle multiple winners in all manner of big races in Ireland, the United Kingdom and internationally but has an especially phenomenal record in this race. Paddington made it twelve wins for O’Brien in 2023, all but one of which came in association with Ballydoyle, the training arm of the powerful Coolmore Stud.
Ballydoyle’s incredible success in the Irish 2000 Guineas means that each of Ryan Moore, Joseph O’Brien and Johnny Murtagh have ridden multiple winners. Any modern jockey will do very well to match the record of five wins which is jointly held by Tommy Burns Sr. and Martin Quirke though. Their ten combined wins began with Burns’ success in the very first Irish 2000 Guineas and ended with another Burns win in 1948.
CLASSY WINNERS RARELY MISSED BY THE BOOKIES
Picking the winner of the Irish 2000 Guineas isn’t quite as simple as backing an Aidan O’Brien horse. Punters have a lot of previous stats and trends to go on though, with the most helpful surrounding recent performances. Having a run inside three weeks of making the trip to the Curragh is a prerequisite whilst the vast majority of recent winners ran at Newmarket last time out. Again it is worth noting that this wasn’t possible in 2020.
When it comes to previous wins, punters should side with horses who have already got the job done over at least 7 furlongs. This is a Group 1 race for top class, specialist milers though, so those three-year-olds who have won over longer than 1 mile should be viewed with caution.
Of course, racing fans are well aware of the importance of proven high class form over a mile as are the bookies which is why those at the top of the betting have such a good record in the Irish 2000 Guineas. It’s very rare for the favourite to finish outside of the places and also rare for winners to be priced over 5/1.