A total of 10 sophomores will go postward in the Patton S. at Dundalk in Ireland on Friday. The 2020 European Road to the Kentucky Derby event is the first of three to be held across the pond this season, and it will reward points to the top-four finishers on a 20-8-4-2 basis. The contenders will travel one-mile on Polytrack, led by a trio from the barn of Aidan O’Brien and two from his son, Joseph. 

Here is the field:

BATTLE OF LIEGE
Battle of Liege Career Racing Stats
  • 2 Starts
  • 1 Wins
  • 0 Place
  • 0 Show
  • Total Career Earnings: $5,438
Trainer: Aidan O’Brien
Jockey: Padraig Beggy
Sire: War Front
Dam: Liscanna

Contender graduated at second asking on a synthetic surface at Chelmsford City in his 2019 finale. Well-bred sort is one of three in the field for Aidan O’Brien, and he has room for improvement this campaign.


CHOICE OF MINE
Choice of Mine Career Racing Stats
  • 2 Starts
  • 1 Wins
  • 0 Place
  • 0 Show
Total Career Earnings: $10,272
Trainer: Joseph O’Brien
Jockey: Declan McDonogh
Sire: Redoute’s Choice
Dam: Thislilsoulofmine

Aussie-bred made good in a local debut when defeating a useful field traveling a mile on the course. The colt has some early foot, and he will likely be forwardly placed from the outset as a top-three player.


CROSSFIREHURRICANE
Crossfirehurricane Career Racing Stats
  • 2 Starts
  • 2 Wins
  • 0 Place
  • 0 Show
Total Career Earnings: $20,748
Trainer: Joseph O’Brien
Jockey: Shane Crosse
Sire: Kitten’s Joy
Dam: Louvakhova

This unbeaten Kentucky-bred looms as the one to beat following a decisive tally at Dundalk earlier this month. The Joseph O’Brien pupil will be prominent from the start in his stakes debut.


DUTCH ADMIRAL
Dutch Admiral Career Racing Stats
  • 2 Starts
  • 0 Wins
  • 0 Place
  • 0 Show
Total Career Earnings: $657
Trainer: C W J Farrell
Jockey: Robbie Colgan
Sire: Dutch Art
Dam: Apasionata Sonata

This Irish-bred sophomore has been far from impressive from a pair of lifetime attempts to date. The son of Dutch Art was well beaten by Crossfirehurricane last time out, and he will need major improvement to challenge this field on Friday.


HOWLING WOLF
Howling Wolf Career Racing Stats
  • 3 Starts
  • 1 Wins
  • 0 Place
  • 1 Show
Total Career Earnings: $14,685
Trainer: Anthony Mullins
Jockey: Ronan Whelan
Sire: Footstepsinthesand
Dam: Aussie Opera

Gray colt trailed the field when trying Grade 2 foes on the turf at Leopardstown in his 2019 finale. The Irish-bred flashed some potential as a 2-year-old, and he is another who figures to be involved from the opening bell in the Patton.


KING OF ATHENS
King of Athens Career Racing Stats
  • 5 Starts
  • 1 Wins
  • 1 Place
  • 0 Show
Total Career Earnings: $9,104
Trainer: Aidan O’Brien
Jockey: Seamie Hefferman
Sire: War Front
Dam: Together Forever

This well-bred sort capped off his juvenile season with a daylight victory at Lingfield in his first run on an all-weather surface. The contender hails from great connections, and he could have appeal in his sophomore bow for Aidan O’Brien.


NEW WORLD TAPESTRY
New World Tapestry Career Racing Stats
  • 4 Starts
  • 1 Wins
  • 0 Place
  • 1 Show
Total Career Earnings: $10,805
Trainer: Aidan O’Brien
Jockey: Michael Hussey
Sire: War Front

Dam: Tapestry

This Kentucky-bred gave a decent account of himself in his 2019 finale when leading with two furlongs left before tiring against Group 1 foes behind the brilliant Kameko at Newcastle. The colt could bloom in his 3-year-old campaign starting on Friday.


WONDER ELZAAM
Wonder Elzaam Career Racing Stats
  • 2 Starts
  • 0 Wins
  • 0 Place
  • 0 Show
Total Career Earnings: $543
Trainer: Niall Egan
Jockey: Colin Keane
Sire: Elzaam
Dam: Artful Panda

Maiden showed improvement when stretching out to a mile on this surface last time out when fourth. The late-runner would be a surprise in this spot, but he could rally and pass some horses in the stretch with further progression.


IN THE PRESENT
In the Present Career Racing Stats
  • 7 Starts
  • 1 Wins
  • 1 Place
  • 2 Show
Total Career Earnings: $22,756
Trainer: Jessica Harrington
Jockey: Shane Foley
Sire: Karakontie
Dam: Dreams of Fire

Win threat was impressive when dominating a 14-horse maiden field at Dundalk while making her synthetic debut most recently. The dark bay filly tackles the boys today, and she looks to have landed in a realistic spot to put a good foot forward and make noise in the Patton.


ORCHID GARDENS
Orchid Gardens Career Racing Stats
  • 2 Starts
  • 0 Wins
  • 2 Place
  • 0 Show
Total Career Earnings: $6,310
Trainer: Michael Halford
Jockey: Rory Cleary
Sire: Muhaarar
Dam: Lidanski

This Irish-bred lass has been runner-up from a pair of lifetime performances at Dundalk in advance of her stakes debut. The $72,000 juvenile purchase was no match for the favorite most recently, but she has room for development as a top-three contender on Friday.

(Photo courtesy of Dundalk Racecourse)