Owner: Prince A. Faisal
Trainer: André Fabre
Breeder: Michael & Reiko Baum
Rider: Silvestre de Sousa
This $500,000 Keeneland September graduate finished second twice last year for Saudi owner Prince Faisal and opened his winning account for his return against readier opponents. Ridden by Silvestre de Sousa, Last Kingdom followed German raider Empire of the Star (Siyouni) to take over along the rail, leaving third-placed Rayon Vert (Harbour Watch) dominated once again after finishing second to Prix Djebel (L) second Phelps Win (Muhtathir).
Last Kingdom is the second foal out of Compelling, a winner in Ireland and a daughter of Damson (Entrepreneur), who won the Queen Mary Stakes (Gr2) in Royal Ascot and the Phoenix Stakes (Gr1) when trained by David Wachman for John Magnier. Damson is a daughter of the Aga Khan mare Tadkiyra (Darshaan), herself from a dam from François Dupré stud, Tremogia (Silver Shark).
Main entries: Abu Dhabi Poule d’Essai des Poulains (French 2,000 Guineas-Gr1), Prix du Jockey Club (French Derby-Gr1), Juddmonte Grand Prix of Paris (Gr1).
Owner: Al Shaqab Racing
Trainer: Jean-Claude Rouget
Breeder: Benjamin Vernon Sangster
Rider: Grégory Benoist
Spotted when a troubled 2nd for her debut over Chantilly Fibresand, Middle East ran closer to the pace this time and she was able to break away at the decisive point and beat a courageous second Bijin (Holy Roman Emperor).
Bought €800,000 at Arqana Breeze-up sales by Mandore International (Nicolas de Watrigant) for Al Shaqab Racing, Middle East is out of the good mare Rose Bonheur, twice a Listed winner in Ireland for trainer Kevin Prendergast and owner Lady O'Reilly, who sold her to Benjamin Sangster, Middle East’s breeder.
Main entries : Abu Dhabi Poule d’Essai des Pouliches (French 1,000 Guineas-Gr1), The Gurkha Coolmore Prix Saint-Alary (Gr1), Prix de Diane Longines (French Oaks-Gr1).
Owner: Gemini Stud, Elie Lellouche
Trainer: Elie Lellouche
Breeder: Elie Lellouche, Francis Teboul
Rider: Clément Lecoeuvre
Superb finish by the gray Lady Paname, bred by Francis Teboul (Gemini Stud) and her trainer Elie Lellouche. She trailed the field and had to be pushed along in the last turn but finally got into her stride 1 furlong out to score at the wire, beating Foulognes (Lope de Vega), who had the upper hand on the leading Satine (Motivator).
Lady Paname is out of Business Class, also bred by Francis Teboul and Elie Lellouche, a winner for her debut at 2 and again on her way out of racing four outings later, just after finishing second to the good Haya Landa at Longchamp. Business Class is a sister of the good American Trilogy (Sendawar), from a very versatile family, with a winner of the Prix Renaud du Vivier 4yo Hurdle (Gr1), the Prix des Réservoirs (Gr3) at 2 and a Fibresand champion in Scandinavia!
Lady Paname has a 2-year-old sister by Air Chief Marshall and a yearling brother by Makfi.
Owner: Godolphin SNC
Trainer: André Fabre
Breeder: JPJ Dubois
Rider: Mickaël Barzalona
Favourite Sand Fox stalked the leading Vis A Vis (Dansili) and took over 2 furlongs out to soon extend his lead and hold off a fast finishing Ice Breeze (Nayef).
A € 660,000 Arqana yearling, when consigned by Haras des Capucines, he’s out of Sandy Girl, a sister to champion mare Stacelita (Monsun). His eldest brother by Monsun, Spirit of Qatar, was sold € 650,000 and won in Deauville before being exported to Qatar, where he’s now based.
Sand Fox also has a 2-year-old brother (sold last year € 200,000 at Arqana), and a yearling sister by Siyouni.
Main entries : Prix du Jockey Club (French Derby-Gr1), Juddmonte Grand Prix de Paris (Gr1).
Owner: SA Aga Khan
Trainer: Jean-Claude Rouget
Breeder: SA Aga Khan
Rider: Christophe Soumillon
Slow into stride, Karishma soon started to make her way to the front and was pushed along to dispute the lead 2 furlongs out. She held on to the wire and narrowly beat a well finishing Spindrift (Hard Spun), who had seemed outpaced after staying close to the leading Great Valley (Cheering). Karishma is the second foal out of Karasiyra (Alhaarth), a Gr3-placed in Ireland over 1 ½ at 3 but a winner at 2. The filly had been entered in the highly regarded Prix des Marettes maiden race, in August in Deauville, but she experienced health issues back then that delayed her debut of eight months.
Main entries: Abu Dhabi Poule d'Essai des Pouliches (French 1,000 Guineas-Gr1), The Gurkha Coolmore Prix Saint-Alary (Gr1), Prix de Diane Longines (French Oaks-Gr1) .
Owner: Flaxman Stables Ireland Ltd.
Trainer: Pascal Bary
Breeder: Flaxman Stables Ireland Ltd.
Rider: Stéphane Pasquier
Ratiocination won a very hot debut race for Niarchos family and trainer Pascal Bary at the expense of favorite Parabellum (Dubawi), who came in the middle of the track and just failed by a short head while the leading Oshayger (Frankel) bravely stayed on to the end. The winner is the sixth foal out of the Prix Marcel Boussac (Gr1) winner Denebola (Storm Cat), a daughter of Prix Morny (Gr1) and Prix de la Salamandre (Gr1) winner Coup de Génie (Mr Prospector) for the same breeders/owners. It is one of the best families around!
Second-placed Parabellum is also very well born since he made the top-price at Arqana Yearlings in 2015 with a €2.6m tag!
Main entries: Abu Dhabi Poule d’Essai des Poulains (French 2,000 Guineas-Gr1), Prix du Jockey Club (French Derby-Gr1).
Owner: Thierry Cyprès and Philippe Peltier
Trainer: Philippe Peltier
Breeder: Thierry Cyprès
Rider: Johnny Charron
This race is the female version of the Prix Grandak won by Ajas a week earlier. Gold Filly followed front-runner Carlota (Enrique) and was heading to the lead when she bumped with Villa Navarre (Saint of the Saints) at the second last, but recovered well to win handily. Gold Filly is the second foal out of Grand Cross of Pau (L) winner Thou in Gold, also trained by Philippe Peltier and a winner of ten races including seven cross-countries in Pau, which was obviously her best sport. Thou in Gold went to stud at 11 at Thierry Cyprès’s farm in the Nièvre (Center-East), one of the best AQPS breeders in the country. The thoroughbred mare gave Goldkhov (Sholokhov), a winner in Pau last Winter, also third in the Prix Duc d'Anjou 4yo Chase (Gr3), and two younger foals after Gold Filly, namely View Gold (Vision d’État) in 2015 and Thou Gris (Gris de Gris) in 2016.