Snow Fairy dominates in Irish Oaks win


Racing:Snow Fairy put up a terrific performance to land the Darley Irish Oaks at the Curragh and follow up her success in the Epsom equivalent.

Once Ryan Moore asked the Ed Dunlop-trained filly to quicken the response was instant and she stormed into the lead over a furlong out.

Miss Jean Brodie stayed on well to snatch second place. Lady Lupus was third and Meeznah fourth.

The start was delayed while Miss Jean Brodie was re-plated, but once the Classic got underway it was the Aidan O’Brien-trained pacemaker Ice Empress who set the early gallop.

She soon had the field well strung out and was still at the head of affairs with half a mile to run.

Joseph O’Brien took Lady Lupus to the front for the O’Brien team at the turn for home with Akdarena and Meeznah close, but Snow Fairy (7-2) had made eye-catching progress from midfield.

She quickly burst clear and stamped her authority to win as she liked by eight lengths from 33-1 shot Miss Jean Brodie and 66-1 chance Lady Lupus.

Dunlop, winning the race for a third time, said: “That was a good performance. It was pretty spectacular really, the way she put the race to bed.

“Ryan said she got bumped at one stage and she’d be better on better ground.

“We were very confident she’d go well on decent ground so I was walking my box a bit today. It was the owner who decided to take the plunge and said go.

“She is stronger than she was at Epsom and she has a huge heart.

“The Yorkshire Oaks is a possibility now. I persuaded the owner to supplement her twice for the Breeders’ Cup and I don’t know if I’ll ask her to do it again.

“We’d have to start to think of going down a similar road to Ouija Board. I’m reliably informed that once everything is OK, she’ll stay in training as a four year old.”

Hibaayeb, the 100-30 favourite, was in mid-division under Frankie Dettori, but weakened quickly on the rain-softened ground from over three furlongs out and finished last.