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The Group 3 Gladness Stakes is the feature race on Sunday's card at the Curragh

Updated: Saturday, 06 Apr 2013 21:06 | Comments

La Collina (l) makes her return in the Gladness Stakes
La Collina (l) makes her return in the Gladness Stakes

The Big Bad Bob Gladness Stakes is the feature of seven races at the Curragh's second meeting of the season and a competitive Group 3 field has assembled.

La Collina failed to add to her juvenile spoils throughout last year but she mainly dined at the top table, and this looks a realistic starting point.

Without a run since September, however, she could be vulnerable to race-fit rivals in Yellow Rosebud, a fine second to Rehn's Nest here a fortnight ago, and Lily's Angel, who returns from a brief but fruitful spell in Dubai.

Add smart colts Foxtrot Romeo and Nephrite, and there is clearly plenty to consider.

The Listed Irish Open Alleged Stakes provides excellent back-up to the main race and Parish Hall makes his belated return to action having missed last season through injury.

Jim Bolger's 2011 Dewhurst hero would make light work of this if resuming from where he left off, but recent Dundalk winners Captain Joy and Steps To Freedom should at least make him work. Ernest Hemingway still has the potential to go a long way, but may improve for the run.

Racing starts at 2.10 and Highland Falcon will be trying to put his introductory experience to good use as he clashes with choicely bred newcomers Coach House and Freedom Square.

The Cancer Clinic Research Trust EBF Fillies Maiden may be best left to Aidan O'Brien's Moth, who improved appreciably between her first couple of starts last term and could yet take her form to greater levels with another winter behind her.

Maude Adams carries top weight in the Equisoftlive.com Handicap, while O'Brien's Beach Of Falesa is charged with the same task in the Irish Field Handicap.

The Irish Stallion Farms EBF Maiden closes the card and it's not hard to see Hudson's Bay proving popular given his encouraging debut third to Lines Of Battle in October, coupled with his trainer's blistering start to the campaign.

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