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Prix du Jockey-Club: A wide open classic
by Geir Stabell (geir.stabell@globeform.com) / Globeform (http://www.globeform.com)
Last update: 2007-06-03 04:04:39 (First published: 2007-06-02 07:40:33 )


Chantilly Sunday: Twenty horses have been declared for the Prix du Jockey-Club (G1), run over its new distance, 2100 metres, on Sunday.

And this really is a wide open affair, as the field consists mainly of lightly raced, unexposed runners.

Andre Fabre saddles three runners, the Irish trainer Aidan O’Brien runs two, and the English trainer John Gosden will also be double handed. Will the winner come from one of these powerful teams? Quite possibly. They all have strong contenders, most of them coming out of stakes races but a colt from another corner makes more appeal in this office.

GLOBEFORM RATINGS
PRIX DU JOCKEY CLUB (G1)

Chantilly 3 June 2007 – 2100 metres / 10.5 fur. turf

Horses presented with best
Globeform ratings, sires, riders.

A ‘+’ after horse indicates improvement expected.


111 – SPIRIT ONE (Anabaa Blue) / D Boeuf
110 – LAWMAN (Invincible Spirit) + / L Dettori
110 – HALICARNASSUS (Cape Cross) + / D Holland
109 – VISIONARIO (Spinning World) + / M Sautjeau
108 – RAINCOAT (Barathea) + / R Hughes
107 – LITERATO (Kendor) C-P Lemaire
105 – CHINESE WHISPER (Montjeu) J Murtagh
105 – MEDICINE PATH (Danehill Dancer) R Mullen
104 – ALEXANDER OF HALES (Danehill) + / J Heffernan
103 – QUEST FOR HONOR (Highest Honor) + / J Victoire
102 – SAGARA (Sadler’s Wells) T Gillet
102 – SUNSHINE KID (Lemon Drop Kid) / J Fortune
101 – NO DREAM (Anabaa) + / O Peslier
100 – BROOKLYN BOY (Gone West) I Mendizabal
..99 – ZAMBEZI SUN (Dansili) ++ / S Pasquier
..95 – SHAMDINAN (Dr Fong) + / C Soumillon
..95 – LOUP BRETON (Anabaa) + / T Thulliez
..?+ – INDIAN SPRING (Indian Danehill) ++ /G Benoist
..?+ – CASTLEREAGH (Machiavellian) K McEvoy
…? – BELTANUS (Tertullian) T Mundry

ZAMBEZI SUN, with just five names behind him on our ratings, is a horse that makes a lot of appeal in this classic. He may have to improve nearly ten lengths on what we have seen thus far, and he may be short on experience, but he has so much else going for him. The son of Dansili made his racecourse debut in a newcomers’ event over 10 furlongs on very soft ground in April, and beat Airmail Special by a head, with Itinerary third. Both of these ran behind Sagara at Maisons-Laffitte next time out, when Itinerary was second and Airmail Special unplaced. The latter turned the form back in his favour when they met for a third time (again on testing ground at Longchamp). Airmail Special won that day, beating Noble Prince by 6 lengths. Itinerary was fourth. Noble Prince had been second, beaten 1 ½ lengths, behind Loup Breton on his debut.

Three and a half weeks after his debut win, Zambezi Sun returned to Longchamp, stepped up to 10.5 furlongs, ran on good ground, and continued his education with a taking 2-length win over Shamdinan. Arras finished third and Unbeliever was fourth. Shamdinan, a well bred son of Dr Fong (out of a half-sister to Shamdala) was coming off a win at Saint-Cloud. Arrak had been fifth to Zamebzi Sun last time, but was now beaten a couple of lengths further.

It is pure guesswork how good Zambezi Sun may turn out to be, or how rapidly he can improve, but he is one on the most likeable colts in this field, and there is nothing here to suggest we are wrong to take a chance on a colt like this.

He is a half-brother to Kalabar, who was a smart performer over 10 and 12 furlongs at three, when he won the Prix Guillaume d’Ornano (G2) – from Saturn and Prince Kirk – and was a game second to G1 winner Vallee Enchantee in the Prix du Conseil de Paris (G2). Kalabar was by Kahyasi, but – as was so well demonstrated last year – Dansili is more than capable of siring a high class middle distance horse. In fact, this colt does have a similar profile to Rail Link's, who won the ‘Arc’ for the same owner/breeder connections last season.


SPIRIT ONE produced Globeform 111 when beaten a head by Mount Nelson in the Criterium International (G1) last year, when the Derby runner Yellowstone was 1 ½ lengths behind in third. Spirit One has not been able to reach such a good level this year, and he is hard to fancy.


LAWMAN, on the other hand, is a colt that has been going very much the right way this year. The pedigree is a bit puzzling, as he is by the sprinter Invincible Spirit out of the Gulch mare Laramie. This makes him a half-brother to Latice (Inchinor), winner of the Prix de Diane (G1) over this course and distance three years ago. Lawman made all and ran on strongly to beat Holocene and Chinese Whisper in the 9-furlong Prix de Guiche (G3) over this course last time out. He has a good draw here, and must be considered.


HALICARNASSUS beat just two rivals but was visually quite impressive when landing the Peters Opan Stakes (LR) over 11 furlongs at Goodwood in May. He was always travelling the best, and swooped past the short priced favourite Eastern Anthem (who runs in the Derby) for a solid 1 Ό-length win. It is hard race to assess, but it must have been the Cape Cross colt’s career best, and he comes here in fine shape. He had previously run third behind Major Cadeaux in the Greenham Stakes (G3) at Newbury, and finished down the field behind Cockney Rebel in the 2000 Guineas (G1) at Newmarket. Halicarnassus won a G2 on his second start at two. His pedigree may look like one for a miler at first glance, but he stayed well at Goodwood and his dam is a half-sister to Executive Pride (runner-up in the Hollywood Derby, G1). This is also the family of high class turf runners like Elegant Air and Prides Profile.


VISIONARIO was a bit of a ‘talking horse’ in France last summer, until being simply hammered behind Holy Roman Emperor in the Prix Jean Luc Lagardere (G1) at Longchamp. He returned to action in the Prix de Fontainebleau (G3) over a mile at Longchamp in April – where he flashed home for third behind Chichi Creasy. It looked a perfect prep run for the Prix du Poulains (G1) but he disappointed again in that classic. Visionario may be talented, but he may also be one not to trust. Will he stay? His sire was a top class miler. While his dam, Visionnario, was second in the Prix de Diane (G1), so, there is a good chance of lasting ten furlongs. His style in the Fontainebleau also suggests he will be best ridden held up.


LITERATO was totally dominant in the provinces before coming to Paris for a mile event at Saint-Cloud in March. He ran a sound enough race, but was beaten 2 lengths by Hurricane Fly – a colt who was readily beaten by Lawman in the Prix de Guiche. However, Literato had Spirit One 3 lengths behind him at Saint-Cloud, and he stepped up markedly when trying 10 furlongs at Longchamp in April. Coming from off the pace, he beat Chinese Whisper by Ύ length in the Prix la Force (G3). Literato has the experience edge over many of these rivals, we know that he stays, but has he got the class to win a Jockey Club?


RAINCOAT’s chances will be so much easier to assess after the Derby at Epsom on Saturday, where Authorized is the short priced favourite. If he wins like many of us expect him to, then Raincoat will not be hard to fancy at Chantilly. He stayed on nicely to finish second behind Authorized in the Dante Stakes (G2) at york, after having gained a smooth win in lesser company at Epsom. Raincoat is a half-brother to the smart 10-furlong performer Quenched (Dansili) and comes from the same family as Bonash. His sire Barathea failed to stay 12 furlongs in the Derby (G1) – but was a respectable fifth at Epsom – and Raincoat is shaping very much like a horse who will get 12 furlongs. He has a good chance.

And if you agree with that, you may feel that the Abdullah entry, combining Raincoat and Zambezi Sun in the French PMU betting, represents good value.


ALEXANDER OF HALES could be the best longshot in the field. He overcame some trouble in running when winning the 10-furlong Gallinule Stakes (G3) at The Curragh in May. It was his fourth career start (second this term) and his first on a premier track. He had run third twice as a juvenile, and won a maiden at Naas on his seasonal debut. He took the Gallinule from stable companion Spanish Harlem (who beat Archipenko last year) and Eyshal (coming off a good third behind the Poulains and Irish 2000 Guineas runner-up Creachadoir). These formlines make Alexander Of Hales really interesting. A son of Danehill, he is a half-brother to 1000 Guineas (G1) winner Virginia Waters (by Kingmambo). Their dam, Legend Maker, won the 12-furlong Prix du Royaumont (G2) as a 3-year-old.


GLOBEFORM SELECTIONS

A: 2 ZAMBEZI SUN
B: 1 RAINCOAT, 7 HALICARNASSUS, 13 LAWMAN, 15 ALEXANDER OF HALES

RECOMMENDED BETS


WIN

60% - Zambezi Sun (best morning price)
40% - Zambezi Sun & Raincoat (entry, French pool)

EACH-WAY: Alexander Of Hales

EXACTAS / JUMELES:

A: 2 Zambezi Sun 1st or second with: 1 – 7 – 13 – 15

6 TRIOS:

1 – 2 – 7
1 – 2 – 13
1 – 2 – 15
2 – 7 – 13
2 – 7 – 15
2 – 13 - 15

(1,2,3 in any order)


Globeform Selections supporting Group races:

Prix de Sandringham: Majestic Roi

Prix du Gros-Chenes: Peace Offering

Grand Prix de Chantilly: Irish Wells









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