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The Irish Flat season begins on Sunday with the traditional curtain raiser at the Curragh

Updated: Saturday, 23 Mar 2013 13:38 | Comments

The 2013 Flat season gets under way at the Curragh on Sunday
The 2013 Flat season gets under way at the Curragh on Sunday

The Irish Flat season begins on Sunday with the traditional curtain raiser at the Curragh.

As always, the valuable BetVictor Irish Lincolnshire takes centre stage with Ansaab bidding to go one better than his silver medal in the corresponding race 12 months ago.

He has only been seen twice since but remains a smart prospect, with similar sentiments applying to the lightly-raced Tandem, winner of a heavy ground Gowran Park maiden last year and last seen finishing fourth in Listed company.

In a typically competitive renewal, English raider Anton Chigurh is sure to prove popular while Inis Meain is match fit following a recent campaign over hurdles and he was highly progressive in this code when last seen back in the Autumn.

The Tally Ho Stud European Breeders Fund Maiden sees nine unraced juveniles kick off proceedings at 2pm and, given Jim Bolger has dominated this race in recent years, Saburo is sure to prove popular and there is enough in his pedigree to suggest he will handle this deep ground.

Stubbs looks the pick of the Ballydoyle pair although it would come as no surprise to see the son of Danehill Dancer do better over further in time while Tommy Stack has enjoyed notable success at this meeting in recent years so Captain Moonlite, sired by brilliant 2-year-old Bushranger, warrants close inspection in the preliminaries.

Yellow Rosebud is the class act on show in the Group 3 Lodge Park Stud European Breeders Fund Park Express Stakes having scored twice at this level last season but she does have to concede weight all round and Starbright, a smart juvenile last term, remains a filly with a bright future and should appreciate returning to this 1m trip.

Despite only seven going to post, the Gabriel Curran Memorial Madrid Handicap looks a decent renewal with some promising 3-year-olds on show.

Einsteins Folly and Francis Of Assisi both rounded off last season with victories but the form of Muaanid's close-up third in a 6f Naas handicap last October looks rock solid and he deserves to carry top-weight

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