Aidan O'Brien has won this for the past two years with long odds-on chances Fame And Glory and So You Think and is ensuring there is no hanging around for ST NICHOLAS ABBEY by entering both Robin Hood and Windsor Palace. The former took a race to warm up last season before an outstanding campaign culminating in his Breeders' Cup Turf success but arrives here on the back of another brilliant effort in the Dubai Sheema Classic and is hard to oppose. Bob Le Beau was beaten 10 lengths in this last year but it was no disgrace and he had a successful campaign which included a Listed success on soft ground at Limerick. Sharestan, the Irish Lincolnshire winner, made the classy Famous Name pull out all the stops at Leopardstown and the selection has little margin for error against an opponent in top form who will love the conditions.
St Nicholas Abbey (IRE) 9-4fav (9-0) 2nd of 10, nk behind Cirrus Des Aigles (9-0) at Meydan(UAE) 1m 4f Grp 1 (1) gd in Mar.
Bob Le Beau (IRE) 2-1fav (9-6) Led or disputed lead, strongly pressed and headed 1 1/2f out, soon no extra, eased when beaten inside final furlong, 8th of 9, 11l behind Freedom (9-0) at Dundalk 1m 3f Group 3 stks (3yo+) (1) pol in Sep.
Elusive Ridge (IRE) 14-1 (9-3) Chased leader, 3rd halfway, ridden in 2nd early straight, no extra in 3rd 1f out, weakened, 7th of 11, 7l behind Famous Name (9-8) at Leopardstown 1m Listed stks (1) gd in Apr.
Parkers Mill (IRE) 12-1 (9-0) Soon mid-division, kept on without threatening under pressure from over 1f out, 4th of 18, 4 1/2l behind Sharestan (9-4) at Curragh 1m Extended Handicap (4yo+) in Mar.
Robin Hood (IRE) 9-2 (9-9) Led, ridden and challenged 2 1/2f out, headed 2f out, no extra in 3rd 1f out, kept on same pace, 3rd of 8, 2 1/2l behind Unaccompanied (9-8) at Navan 1m 5f stks sft in Apr.
Sharestan (IRE) 11-8 (9-3) Mid-division, 6th halfway, not clear run early straight, went 4th 1f out, kept on well inside final furlong, just failed, 2nd of 11, hd behind Famous Name (9-8) at Leopardstown 1m Listed stks (1) gd in Apr.
Windsor Palace (IRE) 25-1 (9-1) Led, strongly pressed and headed briefly 2 1/2f out, kept on under pressure until headed again over 1f out, soon no chance with easy winner and dropped to 3rd final furlong, 3rd of 6, 4l behind Excelebration (9-7) at Curragh 7f Grp 3 (1) in Apr.