COLM O’DONOGHUE can’t wait to get back aboard superstar filly Alpha Centauri.
Jessica Harrington’s three-year-old has rattled up a hat-trick of Group 1 wins and will chase further glory in France on Sunday.
She is the red-hot favourite for the Prix Jacques le Marois at Deauville, a Group 1 over a mile worth €1,000,000 which will be live on At The Races and Racing UK at 3.20pm.
The daughter of Mastercraftsman has won the Irish 1,000 Guineas, Coronation Stakes and Falmouth Stakes on her last three starts.
She is 10-11 with the bookies to add a fourth straight top-level win to her CV, and top jockey O’Donoghue is feeling bullish.
He said: “I’m looking forward to it, she’s in good form and came out of the Falmouth really well.
“Obviously she’s flying over there for the first time and Group 1s are never easy to win, but we are going there full of confidence.
“I hope the ground is as good as possible and then we’ll just see what happens.”
Alpha Centauri led from pillar to post when winning the Falmouth, but O’Donoghue said tactics for the Jacques le Marois had not been set in stone.
He continued: “We were drawn next to the rail in the Falmouth and she’s such a straightforward filly I just wanted to keep it as simple as possible for her really.
“I knew I was sat on the best filly, so it just made sense to ride her like that.
“Going there this weekend we know she’s in good form, we’ll see how she travels over and if the ground is good as expected we’ll see what happens.”
Fellow Irish challengers Romanised, winner of the Irish 2,000 Guineas, and Success Days are both in good shape according to trainer Ken Condon.
Condon said: “The two of them have been declared, they are in the same ownership.
“Everything has gone to plan with Romanised. They worked nicely last Tuesday together and I’m very happy with them.
“The straight mile and easier ground are important factors for Romanised and he should be suited better there than at Ascot (in the St James’s Palace).
“Last Sunday it was genuine good ground and I’d say it will be nice ground again.
“If he can run like he did at the Curragh then hopefully he’ll run a big race.
“He didn’t run his race at Ascot where the ground was very very quick. We won’t have many excuses on Sunday and the straight mile will suit him.
“Jessie’s filly is the outstanding horse in the field and the home defence is also formidable. We are under no illusions, but he’s in the best shape we can have him in.”
Eve Johnson Houghton’s Queen Anne Stakes winner Accidental Agent will fly the flag for Britain.
The colt caused a 33-1 upset when landing the Group 1 at Royal Ascot but is just 8-1 to bag his second big one.
Johnson Houghton said: “Everything has gone to plan with him since Ascot and we couldn’t be happier.
“We aren’t really bothered what the ground is like and we’re just really looking forward to it.”