Curragh: Seventh Heaven wins Irish Oaks for O'Brien

Seventh Heaven and Seamie Heffernan

Seventh Heaven strides clear to score decisively in the Curragh Classic

  PICTURE: Patrick McCann (  

 By Jack Haynes 6:04PM 16 JUL 2016 

Report: Curragh, Saturday

Darley Irish Oaks (Group 1), 1m4f, 3yo fillies

SEVENTH HEAVEN bounced back from a disappointing effort in the Investec Oaks to give Aidan O’Brien a fifth victory in the Curragh Classic as stablemate and odds-on favourite Even Song finished well beaten.


The 14-1 winner stretched clear under Seamie Heffernan to score decisively from British raiders Architecture and Harlequeen in second and third.

O’Brien said: “When Ryan [Moore] picked Even Song, Seamie had second pick and he wanted to ride Seventh Heaven. He thought the Curragh would suit her a lot better than Epsom and he was spot-on.

“She had been working nicely and she loved the good ground today. We always thought she had the makings of a high class filly and we’ll consider sending her for the Yorkshire Oaks.”  

Paddy Power make Seventh Heaven 5-1 joint-favourite (from 33) for the Yorkshire Oaks following her first win at the highest level.

Pretty Perfect, one of four runners trained by O’Brien, ensured there was a decent tempo to the race, though it was Frankie Dettori who went for glory aboard the Investec Oaks second Architecture with two furlongs to go.

It appeared to be a race-winning move, though not for long, as Heffernan had it covered aboard Seventh Heaven, who quickened up well in the final furlong to land a convincing win.

Favourite never involved

Even Song, who was uneasy in the market prior to the off, was held up for a late run but failed to quicken in the home straight with Moore eventually easing off the Ribblesdale winner.

O’Brien was inclined to blame himself for Even Song’s disappointing performance. He said: “It’s probably my own fault. I maybe trained her too hard for the Ribblesdale. She’s a fine big filly and will come back from this. Ryan said she was a bit slowly away and could never get into contention.”

Architecture ‘deserves a Group 1’

Hugo Palmer, trainer of runner-up Architecture, said: “We didn’t win but our filly has run another enormous race. The winner had beaten us narrowly in the Lingfield Oaks Trial and beat us further today, so she has obviously improved.

“Architecture deserves to win a Group 1 after her runs at Epsom and here today. She’s in the Yorkshire Oaks but we could send for the German Oaks.”

Ribblesdale second Ajman Princess similarly disappointed with Andrea Atzeni pushing the daughter of Teofilo along on the turn to the straight, and with little response, the Italian rider let her make her own way home at the rear of the field.

Horse Racing News | Racing Post

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