Sapphire Stakes Guide 2021

Curragh - July 16 2021
Curragh 13:50
5(5)
Oisin Orr

Erosandpsyche

J:
 
Oisin Orr
T:
 
Kieran P Cotter
Age: 3
Weight: 9-5
OR: 101
Days: 17

Kieran Cotter and Oisin Orr team up with Erosandpsyche. A lightly raced 3 year old colt by Sepoy, he only made his debut at the start of this year.

He had a shaky start to life in racing and was well beaten on debut before unseating at Dundalk in a race featuring Mooniesta and Logo Hunter.

On his next start he easily shed his maiden tag over 5 furlongs.

Another one who’s tried his luck against Logo Hunter only to be beaten by the impressive 3 year old.

He did further boost the form of Logo Hunter by narrowly winning a 3 runner event at Tipperary at the end of last month.

Beaten in listed company by a rival that he has plenty to find on form with, he’s going to need a career best to get involved in a Group 2 race.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
17/07/21CUR5Gd9-58
30/06/21TIP5GF9-41
09/06/21COR5Y9-43
25/04/21NAV6Gd9-59
20/04/21TIP5Y9-71
Curragh - July 16 2021
Curragh 13:50
6(1)
Seamie Heffernan

Logo Hunter

J:
 
Seamie Heffernan
T:
 
Michael J Browne
Age: 3
Weight: 9-5
OR: 113
Days: 38

Heading the market is Michael Browne’s Logo Hunter. The three year old is looking to make the most of his weight for age allowance at a higher grade.

The gelding operation and a switch in yards brought about a rapid improvement for the son of Brazen Beau and he’s been highly consistent this year.

A snug maiden win over 6 furlongs was followed by a narrow defeat to subsequent Group 3 winner A Case Of You.
Six furlongs looked to be the very limit of his stamina and he’s come back in trip since.

A debut win in handicap company suggested 5 furlongs was his optimum.

A listed defeat over 5.5 furlongs further compounded this, despite only being beaten into 2nd by less than a length.
The minimum trip has since yielded two impressive listed wins.

A demolition job at Naas was mightily impressive against older horses and he backed that up recently with another win under a penalty.

His form looks solid and he’s been blowing away listed competition. A transition into group company will ask for some more improvement but he’s going the right way and is the one to beat on paper.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
09/06/21COR5Y9-71
16/05/21NAA5Sft9-31
25/04/21NAV6Gd9-52
03/04/21COR5Y9-31
19/03/21DUN6St9-52
Curragh - July 16 2021
Curragh 13:50
1(4)
Gary Carroll

Gustavus Weston

J:
 
Gary Carroll
T:
 
Joseph G Murphy
Age: 5
Weight: 9-9
OR: 108
Days: 56

The second highest rated horse in the field, Gustavus Weston takes his chance in group company again off the back of a recent Group 2 success.

The gelding has been highly tried over a variety of trips but has only ever scored over 6 furlongs on slower ground.
A Group 3 win on soft ground came way back in 2019 and he has struggled to get back in the winner’s enclosure since.

Trying over as short as 5.5 furlongs and as far as 7 furlongs failed to yield any wins until his most recent run.

A Group 2 win on deep ground at the Curragh was a standout career best and he had some useful types like Glen Shiel well beaten.

Logo Hunter has already easily beaten him over 5 furlongs and it’s hard to see him getting competitive over the minimum trip again unless the rain seriously begins to fall over the Curragh.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
12/09/21CUR5Gd9-66
08/08/21CUR6Y10-01
17/07/21CUR5Gd9-92
22/05/21CUR6Sft/Hy9-51
16/05/21NAA5Sft9-116
Curragh - July 16 2021
Curragh 13:50
3(6)
Scott McCullagh

Strong Johnson

J:
 
Scott McCullagh
T:
 
J H Scott
Age: 5
Weight: 9-9
OR: 88
Days: 5

At the tail of the betting is 88 rated Strong Johnson. He’s already a massive price to get involved here as he tackles group company for the first time.

He has won 3 races in his career and 2 of those came over this course and distance, he’s been running in handicaps and struggling off a mark in the mid to high 80’s.

Moving up into Group 2 company is going to ask an immense question of this 5 year old and his form and rating suggest he’s unlikely to play a big part in the finish of this deep looking race.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
10/10/21CUR6Y/Sft9-80
02/10/21ASC5Sft9-07
26/09/21CUR5Gd10-02
12/09/21CUR5Gd9-67
26/08/21TIP5Gd/Y9-90
Curragh - July 16 2021
Curragh 13:50
7(2)
Ben Coen

Measure Of Magic

J:
 
Ben Coen
T:
 
J P Murtagh
Age: 3
Weight: 9-2
OR: 106
Days: 29

Johnny Murtagh brings Measure Of Magic here. The 3 year old filly was an impressive maiden winner as a 2 year old and backed that up by beating Miss Amulet in a conditions race, with Logo Hunter back in 3rd.

She struggled when moved up in grade as a juvenile but ran some solid races in defeat in group and listed contests.

Returning to the track in a last race this season off the back of a winter break so beat Logo Hunter at Navan over 5.5 furlongs.

She put in an even more impressive performance At Cork afterwards to shrug off her penalty to a wide margin victory against her own sex.

We last saw this filly coming 3rd in a hot renewal of the Commonwealth Cup. She couldn’t live with Campanelle and Dragon Symbol but was a clear 3rd place.

She’s got a lethal finishing kick but finds herself on the wrong side of a weight swing with Logo Hunter.

Likely to be best of the rest behind the hot favourite. 

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
25/09/21CUR6Gd9-23
12/09/21CUR5Gd9-29
17/07/21CUR5Gd9-27
18/06/21ASC6Hy8-113
07/05/21COR5.5Gd9-21
Curragh - July 16 2021
Curragh 13:50
8(7)
Colin Keane

Mooneista

J:
 
Colin Keane
T:
 
Jack W Davison
Age: 3
Weight: 9-2
OR: 101
Days: 29

Mooniesta is a 3 year old filly by Dandy Man for Jack Davison and Colin Keane.

Being a young filly she gets all the weight allowances possible in group company against her elders.

She didn’t manage to shed her maiden tag until her last run as a 2 year old, her 7th career outing. She did handle herself well in listed company but struggled to get her head in front until late in the season.

She’s already been beaten by Logo Hunter this season but was giving away 5lbs to the market leader in a handicap in early April.

She posted a career best when winning a listed race on her next run, with Make A Challenge well held back in 4th.

She’s tried group company since with a very narrow defeat in a Group 3 at Naas over 6 furlongs saw her past the post in 2nd but be demoted to 3rd for interference.

Last seen struggling in deeper waters, she finished 6th but was the first home of the horses drawn low.
A drop back to 5 furlongs will likely suit and she meets Logo Hunter on better terms than earlier in the season

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
17/07/21CUR5Gd9-21
18/06/21ASC6Hy8-116
16/05/21NAA6Sft9-23
26/04/21NAA5Gd8-101
03/04/21COR5Y9-82
Curragh - July 16 2021
Curragh 13:50
2(3)
J M Sheridan

Make A Challenge

J:
 
J M Sheridan
T:
 
Denis Gerard Hogan
Age: 6
Weight: 9-9
OR: 106
Days: 21

The oldest horse in the field is Make A Challenge For Denis Hogan.

The 6 year old has notched 10 career successes ranging from 5 furlongs to 7 furlongs, including four listed wins.

He’s not won since a listed win at Navan last summer and has been beaten by many of the rivals he will face again today.

Mooniesta, Logo Hunter, Gustavus Weston and Romantic Proposal have all beaten him this season. His best run of the season came over 6 furlongs on deep ground behind Gustavus Weston.

A fast ground 5 furlongs doesn’t look to be what this gelding needs and he’s likely going to be outpaced and beaten by horses who already have his measure.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
26/06/21CUR6Gd9-128
22/05/21CUR6Sft/Hy9-52
16/05/21NAA5Sft10-07
26/04/21NAA5Gd10-04
03/04/21COR6Y9-123
Curragh - July 16 2021
Curragh 13:50
4(8)
Chris Hayes

Romantic Proposal

J:
 
Chris Hayes
T:
 
Edward Lynam
Age: 5
Weight: 9-6
OR: 105
Days: 21

A 5 year old for Edward Lynam and Chris Hayes in Romantic Proposal.

She was initially tried as a miler when making her debut and didn’t manage to shed her maiden tag until the back end of her first season when dropped down to 7 furlongs.

She’s since acquitted herself well over 6-6.5 furlongs. A narrow margin handicap win and some impressive runs in defeat in listed company showed that sprinting was where her future lay.

This season she returned with a good 3rd placed finish behind Logo Hunter over 5 furlongs at Naas before two career best runs.

A close 2nd in group company against her own sex hinted that 6 furlongs is probably the minimum trip she wants as she just struggled to reel in the winner before the line loomed.

Last seen dropping to listed company saw her rightfully gain some black type.

Moving down in trip isn’t likely to suit and she might find the line coming too soon again.

She’s got nearly 5 lengths to find with a more progressive horse in Logo Hunter too.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
12/09/21CUR5Gd9-31
17/07/21CUR5Gd9-63
26/06/21CUR6Gd9-41
02/06/21CUR6Y9-82
16/05/21NAA5Sft9-63

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