Irish Guineas Festival 2024 Betting Tips, Best Bookmakers & Free Bets

The Irish Guineas Festival Betting is a chance for punters to roll the dice on some of the best flat horse racing of the season. Featuring the 1,000 Guineas and the 2,000 Guineas, it is a time of year that Ireland's leading outfits are hungry for classic success. 

It also always provides great betting heats, and we have compiled a comprehensive guide for bettors looking to make some cash and hit the jackpot over the course of the three-day festival. On this page, you will find information on the best betting sites, tips on placing a bet, and expert insight on finding winners. 

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According to our Editorial Guide
This page is written by
Eamon Doggett
Eamon DoggettFeatured Horse Racing & Rugby Specialist
Fact checked by
Rebecca Mackay
Rebecca MackayHead of Content

Best Betting Sites for the Guineas Festival

Looking for Irish Guineas betting sites? Have a look at the curated list of the top horse racing betting sites available. Irishluck has a dedicated team of experts who look at various factors before establishing our list of recommendations for Irish casino players.

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Irishluck's Picks for Guineas Festival Betting

We will dive into tips for betting on the Irish Guineas Festival, but first you need to pick a betting website and there are many options. Luckily, our experienced team have gone through them all to find you the best options for horse racing betting.

🍀 Best Irish Guineas Betting SiteBoyleSports
💸 Best Free Bets OfferBet365
💯 Best OddsWilliam Hill
📺 Best In-Play & Live BettingBetway

Best Irish Guineas Betting Site? Try BoyleSports

If it is Irish racing, it often pays to look no further than Boylesports. The Irish-owned company has been on the scene since 1982 and has become one of the leading platforms for online horse racing betting. 

Boylesports has an easy-to-use website that is always offering exciting promotions and bonuses to its customers. Importantly, they also offer 'Best Odds Guaranteed' so you will not miss out on the best value for your bets, and they roll out money-back specials for the big events. As well as offering a host of markets for each race, they have a Free Streaming service as part of their website and app. 

For all these reasons, BoyleSports is our top pick for betting on the Irish Guineas Festival. 

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Check out Bet365 for the Best Free Bet Offers

One of the biggest betting websites in the world, Bet365 are market leaders in the promotions they offer their players. With Bet Boosts, Price Promises, Each Way Extras and BOG, they give bettors a huge amount of options when betting on horse racing. They are also renowned for offering some of the best value odds in the industry, so keep them in mind if betting on the Irish Guineas Festival.  

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Best Odds on the Irish Guineas? Hard to Beat William Hill

As well as having one of the highest-rated mobile applications on the market, William Hill is also hard to beat for horse racing odds. The UK company is open to Irish punters who can use their many offers and features, such as Cash Out, Live Streaming, BuildYourOdds, and Flash Odds.

Betway the Kings of In-Play Betting

Although one of the newest betting companies, Betway has quickly become very popular among Irish punters. A user-friendly website and app makes betting easy and understandable, especially for in-play betting, and they are also hard to beat for bonuses and promotions. If you have a punt on the Irish Guineas Festival, Betway are worth your time.  

Irish Guineas Festival Bet Types

horse race betting

There are a variety of options available to punters when placing a bet on the Irish Guineas Festival. But we will guide you through the most common and popular forms: 

Win Bet

The Win Bet is gambling on a horse to win a race. If the horse wins, you win money. If the horse loses, you lose your stake. 

This is the common type of bet that bettors make and is often used when betting on favourites. 

Place Bet

The Place Bet increases your chances of winning money by betting on a horse to finish in one of the place positions rather than only winning the race. 

The number of place positions offered depends on the numbers of runners. The general rule of thumb is: 

  • 1-4 runners: no place - win only bets allowed
  • 5-7 runners: 1st and 2nd place only
  • 8-15 runners: 1st, 2nd and 3rd place
  • 16+ runners: 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th place

Recent years suggest that there should be at least nine runners in both the 2,000 and 1,000 Guineas, so bookies should be offering at least three places to punters in these races. 

Each-Way Bet

The Each-Way Bet consists of a Win Bet and a Place Bet. The easiest way is to think of these as two separate bets. 

With the Win Bet you are gambling on a horse to win the race, while with the Place Bet you are gambling on a horse to be placed (see above for explainer). 

Because you are placing two separate bets, the Each-Way Bet actually costs twice the amount of your stake. For example, a €5 Each-Way Bet costs €10 (€5 win bet + €5 place bet). 

  1. Scenario 1 - Your horse wins: You win the win bet and the place bet. 
  2. Scenario 2 - Your horse doesn't win but places: You lose the win bet but win the place bet. 
  3. Scenario 3 - Your horse finishes outside the places: You lose the win bet and you lose the place bet.

Ante-post Bet

The ante-post bet is done prior to the course betting markets on a race opening and is done in expectation of its predicted odds. 

Most often, ante-post markets are available for high-profile races, just like the 1,000 and 2,000 Irish Guineas. Punters who use this bet often do so to try and avail of bigger odds than those available on the day of the race. 

The risk of ante-post betting, though, is that you are gambling on your horse running in the race and the potential opposition. 

Whereas, if betting when the course betting markets open, you will get your money back if your horse is a non-runner, you will still lose your stake if the horse you backed ante-post doesn't run in the race. 

How to Place a Bet

Irish Guineas Festival betting is similar to any other type of horse racing betting. All you need is internet access and a few quick steps that we will guide you through: 

  1. Sign up: start off by setting up an account with a trusted bookmaker, such as the ones mentioned on this page. They will ask you for standard personal information, such as your name, address, phone number etc. You will then be able to create your own username and password. 
  2. Claim your welcome bonus: most betting websites will offer customers a welcome bonus or promotion when signing up. Be sure to read the terms of conditions to make sure you are eligible  for the offer. 
  3. Find the Irish Guineas market: This should be easy to find in the horse racing section of the bookmaker's website. Then it is a matter of selecting the specific race you would like to place a bet on. 
  4. Place your bet: pick the horse you would like to bet on, then choose your bet type and your stake amount. It will then ask you to confirm your bet before it is placed.

There is often plenty of competition between bookmakers for major races, such as the 1,000 and 2,000 Irish Guineas, so look out for any special offers (extra place terms, money-back specials etc.) for the big races.

How do Guineas Betting Odds Work?

The most common odds format for the Irish Guineas Festival is fractional odds. These odds are denoted by a fraction, i.e. two numbers separated by a slash. For example, 3/1, 9/2, 16/1, 100/1 are all fractional odds. 

The number on the left is how much you will win, and the number on the right is how much you will need to stake to win this amount. 

For example, if you bet on a horse at odds of 5/1, you will win €5 for every €1 you stake. So, if you stake €5, you will win €25. This is, of course, if the horse wins!

Another common odds format is decimal odds. Whereas fractional odds indicate how much you can win (profit), decimal odds indicate your total payout: your profit plus the return of your stake. 

For example, 5/1 in decimal odds form is 6.0. So a €5 bet at 6.0 will give a total return of €30. 

Irish Guineas Festival Betting Tips

Here are some top tips when betting on the Irish Guineas Festival:

Skip Newmarket Form

While the best trials for the Irish 1,000 Guineas and 2,000 Guineas has often been the English versions run at Newmarket, recent history suggests that horses who skipped the English version perform better at the Curragh. 

In the 1,000 Guineas, for instance, four of the last five winners (Homeless Songs, Empress Josephine, Peaceful and Alpha Centauri) didn’t run in the Newmarket classic. 

Be Wary of Second and Third Strings

The betting market is often dominated by Aidan O’Brien runners in Irish Classic races, but oftentimes it can pay to side with some of his lesser-fancied runners. 

Jockey Ryan Moore gets first choice of the O’Brien runners, but picking the best at this early stage of their career is a difficult task, and Moore has often made the wrong call. 

In 2021, Moore opted to ride Joan of Arc (4/1) in the Curragh race but was beaten in a photo-finish by stablemate Empress Josephine (14/1).

A Race for Long-Shots

In the past five years in the 2,000 Guineas there have been 8/1 (Mac Swiney), 16/1 (Phoenix of Spain) and 25/1 (Romanised) winners. And the last runner-up in the race was New Energy (40/1) in 2022. 

Given that the last five runnings of the race have seen field sizes of nine runners or more, it has become a good betting race for each-way punters. 

Be sure to check out the each-way terms with various bookmakers.

A Horse to Keep an Eye on (Al Riffa, 2,000 Guineas)

When Joseph O’Brien says this was the best two-year-old he has trained, you need to take notice. 

Al Riffa has a gorgeous pedigree, being by Wootton Bassett and out of a Galileo mare. An eye-catching second on his debut, he then won a Curragh maiden so impressively that the decision was made to supplement him for the National Stakes. 

Sent off at 9/1, Al Riffa travelled powerfully throughout and was dominant at the finish of a race whose form has worked out well subsequently. 

O’Brien has pencilled in this contest for his stable star ever since and he looks sure to go very close.

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Irish Guineas Festival Live Stream

A live stream allows you to watch the race unfolding at the track. Perhaps nothing beats being at the event in person, but having a high-quality stream of the event is the next best thing. 

This is an option that is now available on many betting websites. Look out for an icon that mentions a live stream, and it allows you to watch some of the build-up to the race and all the action when the stalls open. 

With many races not televised on mainstream channels, the live stream options from bookmakers like bet365, William Hill and Paddy Power has given customers the opportunity to cheer their horse on from the comfort of their home. 

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Irish Guineas Festival Free Bets

Bookmakers often reward new or loyal customers with free bets under some conditions. 

Mr Green, for example, has a welcome offer for new customers of two (2x) €25 Free Bets. To qualify for this bonus, you will need to deposit a minimum first deposit of €20 and then make a wager of €20 or more at minimum odds of 4/5 (1.80) or higher. Novibet and other bookmaker websites also offer similar bonuses and promotions. 

Be sure to check out the best offers ahead of the Irish Guineas Festival. 

Irish Guineas Festival Dates and Schedule

The 2023 Irish Guineas Festival will run from Friday to Sunday, 26th May 2024. The best races for fans are typically held on Saturday, for the first classic of the season the Tattersalls Irish 2000 Guineas. On Sunday, there's the Tattersalls Irish 1000 Guineas.

Irish Guineas Festival Day One Card - Friday Night Fever

Date: Friday 24th

The first day of the Irish Guineas Festival might be called an aperitif before the main event. But nevertheless, there is still plenty of top quality action. The maiden races on the card are often won by some highly-regarded types.

Start TimeRaceDistance
4.50pmIEBF MaidenSix Furlongs
5.25pm DNG Spring Fillies HandicapOne mile 
6.00pm Habitat IEBF HandicapSix Furlongs 
6.30pm Live music at McDonnells Bar Newbridge MaidenSeven Furlongs
7.00pmSpar Ballymany and Newbridge HandicapSeven Furlongs
7.30pmNovibet Emerald MileOne mile
8.00pmNovibet IEBF MaidenSix Furlongs
8.30pmNovibet HandicapOne mile

Irish Guineas Festival Day Two Card - 2000 Guineas Day

Date: Saturday 25th

The long and wide straight of the Curragh is an ideal track for sprinting and the undercard of 2,000 Guineas Day features two high-quality sprint races in the Marble Hill Stakes and the Greenlands Stakes. English-trained runners have had a very good record in these races, so it might pay to side with the away team. 

Start TimeRaceDistance
1.20pmTally Ho Stud IEBF MaidenSix furlongs
1.55pmGAIN Marble Hill Stakes (Group 3)Six furlongs
2.30pmWeatherbys Ireland Greenlands Stakes (Group 2)Six furlongs 
3.05pmFBD Hotels and Resorts Orby Stakes ListedOne mile and four furlongs
3.40pmTattersalls Irish 2000 Guineas (Group 1)One mile
4.15pmNovibet Guineas Festival Premier HandicapOne mile and two furlongs
4.50pmFinlay Volvo HandicapSeven furlongs
5.25pmNovibet MaidenOne mile and two furlongs

Irish Guineas Festival Day Three Card - 1000 Guineas Day

Date: Sunday 26th

With two Group 1s, a Group 2 and a Group 3 race, the Sunday of the Irish Guineas Festival is perhaps the highest quality fare on offer. Outside of the 1,000 Guineas, the Tattersalls Gold Cup is one of the biggest races on the calendar. A roll of honour that includes the likes of Daylami, Montjeu, Grey Swallow and Magical shows the calibre of winner it usually produces. 

Start TimeRaceDistance
1.45pmTally Ho Stud IEBF MaidenSix Furlongs
2.15pmBarberstown Castle EBF HandicapSix Furlongs
2.45pmTattersalls Gold Cup (Group 1)One mile, two furlongs and 110 yards. 
3.15pm Lanwades Stud Stakes (Group 2)One mile
3.50pm Tattersalls Irish 1000 Guineas (Group 1)One mile
4.25pmHeider Family Stables Gallinule Stakes (Group 3)One mile and two furlongs
4.55pmBarberstown Castle EBF MaidenOne mile and two furlongs
17:25Novibet HandicapOne mile and two furlongs

Irish Guineas Festival History

The first running of the 2,000 Guineas took place in 1921 and was won by Soldennis. The following year saw the introduction of the 1,000 Guineas. 

Now traditionally run three weeks after the English equivalent at Newmarket, it often attracts the winners of those races. However, the last horse to repeat the 2,000 Guineas double was Churhcill in 2017, while Hermosa did the 1,000 Guineas double in 2019. 

The 2,000 Guineas and the 1,000 Guineas are the first Classic races of the 2024 Irish flat season. 

Irish Guineas Key Facts

  • Dates: Saturday 27th (2,000 Guineas) and Sunday 28th (1,000 Guineas)

  • Track: Curragh Racecourse

  • Distance: One Mile

  • Class: Group 1

  • Prize Pot: €500,000

  • Age: Three-year-olds

The Latest Irish Guineas Festival News

The English 1,000 Guineas produced a scintillating finish between Tahiyra and Mawj, with the latter prevailing by half a length, and the pair of them well clear of the third horse. 

And there is every possibility that a rematch could take place in the Irish 1,000 Guineas. Dermot Weld, trainer of Tahiyra, said: “She's run a massive race in what they say is a good time. We'll have a look at the Irish Guineas but we'll see how she comes out of this before we make any definite decisions.”

While Saeed Bin Suroor, trainer of Mawj, said: “We will keep options open and see how she comes out of the race. 

“She’s entered in the French Guineas but that is probably too close to this race. But she is also in the Irish Guineas, so we will talk to Sheikh Mohammed and will make a decision after a week.”

Mawj and Oisin Murphy going to post before the Qipco 1000 Guineas Stakes on day three of The QIPCO Guineas Festival at Newmarket Racecourse. Picture date: Sunday May 7, 2023.

Mawj and Oisin Murphy going to post before the Qipco 1000 Guineas Stakes on day three of The QIPCO Guineas Festival at Newmarket Racecourse. Picture date: Sunday May 7, 2023.  

Previous Winners at Irish Guineas Festival

While Aidan O’Brien has been the dominant force for many years, it is somewhat surprising he has not won the 2,000 Guineas since 2017 when Churchill took the honours. It is also notable that British-trained runners have a good recent record in the race, with three winners in the last ten years. 

Irish 2,000 Guineas Previous Winners

YearHorse JockeyTrainer
2012PowerJoseph O'Brien

Aidan O'Brien

2013MagicianJoseph O'BrienAidan O'Brien
2014KingmanJames DoyleJohn Gosden
2015GleneaglesRyan MooreAidan O'Brien

2016AwtaadChris HayesKevin Prendergast

2017ChurchillRyan MooreAidan O'Brien

2018RomanisedShane Foley

Ken Condon
2019Phoenix of SpainJamie SpencerCharles Hills
2020SiskinColin KeaneGer Lyons
2021Mac SwineyRory ClearyJim Bolger
2022Native Trail

William BuickCharlie Appleby

Over the past ten years, Aidan O’Brien has teamed up to win five renewals of the Irish 1,000 Guineas, with Ryan Moore partnering three of them, and Seamie Heffernan the other two. O’Brien is the leading trainer in the race’s history with ten victories. Dermot Weld has trained five winners of the race, with a 40-year gap between Prince’s Polly triumph in 1982 and Homeless Songs’ victory in 2022.

Irish 1,000 Guineas Previous Winners

2012SamitarMartin HarleyMick Channon 
2013Just The JudgeJamie SpencerCharles Hills
2014MarvellousRyan MooreAidan O'Brien
2015PleascachKevin Manning
Jim Bolger
2016Jet Setting
Shane FoleyAdrian Keatley
2017WinterRyan MooreAidan O'Brien
2018Alpha CentuariColm O'DonoghueJessica Harrington
2019HermosaRyan MooreAidan O'Brien
2020PeacefulSeamie HeffernanAidan O'Brien
2021Empress JosefineSeamie Heffernan Aidan O'Brien
2022Homeless SongsChris HayesDermot Weld 

Our Verdict on Irish Guineas Festival Betting

Big horse racing festivals can often provide bettors with better value than average race meetings. Because they are very popular betting heats, bookmakers often compete to offer the best value in terms of odds, promotions and bonuses. Therefore, being aware of your options as a punter is vital to make good returns on your selections. 

The Irish Guineas Festival also has a history of throwing up many surprising results, so it often pays to leave the crowd and take a chance on an outsider. At this stage of the season, the pecking order of the best horses, particularly in the juvenile division, is up in the air, so every outcome is possible!

Irish Guineas Festival FAQs

Do you have any more questions about the Irish Guineas Festival or horse racing in general? Reach out, and we will get back to you within 48 hours.

What is the difference between the 1000 and 2000 Guineas?

The 1,000 Guineas is for three-year-old fillies, while the 2,000 Guineas is for three-year-old colts and fillies.

What is the prize money for the 1000 Guineas?

The prize pot for the 1000 Guineas is €500,000, with €290,000 going to the winning connections.

Where is the Irish Guineas Festival held?

The Curragh Racecourse in Kildare.

Where can I watch the Irish Guineas Festival?

The festival will be shown live on RTE 2, ITV and on Racing TV.  

Sports Expert
Eamon doggett
Eamon Doggett

Featured Horse Racing & Rugby Specialist

Eamon combines his passion for writing, racing, and rugby by providing horse racing betting, and rugby betting insights for punters.

Expert on:

Horse RacingRugby BettingHorse Racing Betting
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