The History of the Irish 1,000 Guineas

Good Morning!

Welcome to a new post here at A post on a Sunday morning must only mean one thing, something important is happening! Ahead of today’s renewal of the Irish 1,000 Guineas I thought we could have a look back at the history of the race including past winners and some record holders, so with that being said, let’s get right into it!

The Irish 1,000 Guineas is a Group One flat race which takes place at the Curragh in Ireland and is open to three year old fillies. It is ran over 1 mile and takes place in May each year. The first running of the race was 1 year after the Irish 2,000 Guineas and took place in 1922. In 2020, the race was worth €230,000 with the winner collecting €142,500.

Now let’s look into some previous winners o the race, starting with Valoris in 1966 for jockey J. Power, trainer Vincent O’Brien and owner Charles Clore. She went on to produce foals such as Valinsky by Nijinsky who won 3 races including the Geoffrey Freer Stakes as well as Savannah Dancer by Northern Dancer who won 6 races including the Del Mar Oaks.

Let’s then jump to 1986 when Sonic Lady won the race for jockey Walter Swinburn, trainer (Sir) Michael Stoute and owner Sheikh Mohammed who won the race again in 1989 with Ensconse with Ray Cochrane riding for trainer Luca Cumani.

In 1994 jockey Willie Carson won the race on board Mehthaaf for trainer John Dunlop and owner Hamdan Al Maktoum, he then won for the same owner again in 1996 on Matiya this time for trainer Ben Hanbury.

In 1997, the leading trainer in the race Aidan O’Brien had his first victory in the race with Classic Park with jockey Stephen Craine and owner Mrs Seamus Burns. Jamie Spencer then won the race in 1998 on Tarascon for trainer Tommy Stack and owner Jane Rowlinson. In 2001, Imagine won giving leading owner Sue Magnier a first victory in the race with jockey Seamie Heffernan and trainer Aidan O’Brien.

In 2002, Gossamer won the race for jockey Jamie Spencer, trainer Luca Cumani and owner Gerald Leigh. Yesterday won in 2003 for Michael Kinane, Aidan O’Brien and Sue Magnier. Attraction won in 2004 for Kevin Darley, Mark Johnston and the 10th Duke of Roxburghe.

In 2006, the late Pat Smullen won the race on board Nightime for trainer Dermot Weld and owner Marguerite Weld, also winning it in 2010 on Bethrah for Dermot Weld again and owner Hamdan Al Maktoum.

In 2014 we seen Marvellous win for Ryan Moore, Aidan O’Brien and Smith / Tabor / Magnier. Pleascach won in 2016 for jockey Kevin Manning, trainer Jim Bolger and owner Jackie Bolger.

Since 2017, Aidan O’Brien along with owners Tabor / Magnier / Smith have won 3 times with only Jessica Harrington in the middle. In 2017, Ryan Moore won on board Winter, with Colm O’Donoghue winning for Jessica Harrington in 2018 on board Alpha Centauri for owners the Niarchos Family. In 2019, Ryan Moore won again on board Hermosa with Seamie Heffernan winning the June run race in 2020 (Delayed due to COVID 19 pandemic) on board Peaceful.

Now onto the records…

The leading jockey with 7 victories is Morny Wing who won on Lady Violette in 1922, Glenshesk in 1923, Spiral in 1931, Sol Speranza in 1937, Gainsworth in 1940, Panastrid in 1945 and Sea Symphony in 1947.

The leading trainer, which will come as no surprise to anyone at this point is of course Aidan O’Brien with 9 wins. These were Classic Park in 1997, Imagine in 2001, Yesterday in 2003, Halfway To Heaven in 2008, Misty For Me in 2011, Marvellous in 2014, Winter in 2017, Hermosa in 2019 and Peaceful in 2020.

The leading owner (since 1950 – including part ownership) may not surprise anyone again, being Sue Magnier. With 9 winners which are: Imagine in 2001, Yesterday in 2003, Halfway To Heaven in 2008, Again in 2009 Misty For Me in 2011, Marvellous in 2014, Winter in 2017, Hermosa in 2019 and Peaceful in 2020.

This means that Aidan O’Brien trained 8 out of Sue Magnier’s 9 winners and Sue Magnier owned 8 of Aidan O’Brien’s 9 winners. The only winner that Sue Magnier has had which was not trained by Aidan O’Brien was Again in 2009 who was trained by David Wachman. The only winner Aidan O’Brien has had that was not owned or part owned by Sue Magnier was Classic Park in 1997 who was owned by Mrs Seamus Burns.

The Irish 1,000 Guineas usually includes horses who have previously ran in the English version of the race, however only 4 horses have won the English and Irish 1,000 Guineas double. These were: Attraction in 2004, Finsceal Beo in 2007, Winter in 2017 and Hermosa in 2019.

So there we have it, a little look back at the history of the Irish 1,000 Guineas. Who do you like the look of for today’s renewal? Let me know over on Twitter!

I hope you all enjoyed this post and I will see you all on Wednesday evening at 6pm for a new post!


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