Irish 2000 Guineas Trends – Could Native Trail Be A More Perfect Fit?

Native Trail (all blue, right) cannot claw back the deficit with stablemate Coroebus in the 2000 Guineas at Newmarket.Native Trail (all blue, right) cannot claw back the deficit with stablemate Coroebus in the 2000 Guineas at Newmarket.

The Irish 2000 Guineas is the first Classic in Ireland this season. Off the back of his near miss in the first Classic in Britain, can Native Trail atone at the Curragh, and do the trends point towards him succeeding this time. We find out below.


Form

Though coming into the Irish 2000 Guineas on the back of a victory is not imperative, seven of the last ten winners of the race had been in the top two on their warm-up run. One of the exceptions came last year when Mac Swiney, who had only been fourth on his previous effort, came home victorious. Only Native Trail, Buckaroo, Ivy League and Wexford Native made the top two on their most recent starts.

Draw

This could be a particularly key factor. Seven of the previous ten winners had been drawn in stall three or inwards. The Curragh’s Guineas does, of course, have a bend unlike the Newmarket equivalent, which is possibly another reason for the success of those inside draws. If extended slightly, the four shortest-priced runners this year are in stalls 1-4, with Native Trail having the plumb draw right against the rail.

Rating

This trend will knock out the majority. The lowest official rating carried by a winner in the last decade was Awtaad’s 106 in 2016. Only four in this year’s field are currently rated higher than that. Narrowing it down further, seven of the last ten winners had a rating above 110. Only one horse in this year’s filed boasts a higher mark than that and it is runaway favourite Native Trail.

Group Race Quality

Though only half of the last decade’s heroes had won a Group 1 prior to their Irish Guineas successes, eight of the ten winners had claimed a Group race beforehand, either at two or three. Very few in this year’s field have done so to this point, with only Duke De Sessa, Atomic Jones and Native Trail successful in that respect so far.

Breeding

Galileo aside, the average best distance of each sire’s progeny has tended to be under 1m. As such, speed is the ideal breeding indicator and indeed Native Trail’s sire, Oasis Dream, was also the sire of 2012 Irish Guineas victor Power. Ivy League, as a son of Galileo, can be forgiven, as can one of the outsiders in this field in Malex, who is by Kodiac.


Verdict

You may sometimes hope that the trends will point you towards something interesting. In the case of the Irish 2000 Guineas, they only emphatically confirm the obvious, as NATIVE TRAIL just seems utterly made for the job. He comes into this having finished in the top two on his most recent start, he is comfortably the highest-rated and was Group 1 quality as a two-year-old. Furthemore, his sire, Oasis Dream, is known for passing on the speed he possessed in his racing days and to top it all off, Native Trail is in stall one. It should all fall ideally for him.