Bobby Zen

After the disappointment of City Of Troy last Saturday, it is up to Ballydoyle’s fellow TDN Rising Star Henry Longfellow (Ire) (Dubawi {Ire}) to seek to redress the balance in Sunday’s Emirates-sponsored G1 Poule d’Essai des Poulains at ParisLongchamp. While the stable’s 3-year-olds seem to be gradually creeping into gear with every passing day, there is the sense that they are more than a little rusty as they reappear from winter quarters and the son of Minding (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) will have to be near a peak to navigate what is always a tricky encounter around these bends. Along with his more stamina-endowed stablemate Diego Velazquez (Ire) (Frankel {GB}), the G1 Vincent O’Brien National S. and G2 Futurity S. winner could be vulnerable first time up with the home contingent sharpened by their trial efforts.

A key member of the domestic defence is Nurlan Bizakov’s G3 Prix de Fontainebleau winner Ramadan (Fr) (Le Havre {Ire}), who is re-opposed by Philippe Allaire and Haras d’Etreham’s TDN Rising Star Beauvatier (Fr) (Lope De Vega {Ire}) after the pair went first and second in the Apr. 14 course-and-distance prep. Beauvatier, who gives the impression he is yet to have a fair crack of the whip, has lucked out again drawn in 10 and the distinct advantage is with his Christopher Head-trained nemesis who has stall five and a less-complicated running style to aid his cause.

Bizakov’s racing manager Mathieu le Forestier was issuing positive bulletins ahead of the Classic. “His preparation has gone smoothly and Christopher Head is following the pre-established plan,” he said. “All the lights are flashing green. There won’t be that many runners, which means we can be more relaxed about our race plan. In a field of 13 runners, that’s enough to facilitate a fast-run race, while, by the same token, it should guarantee no hard-luck stories. The race should be a fluid one.”

“Victory would be important in so many ways. Le Havre died all too soon after putting the Haras de Montfort and Preaux Stud on the map, so it would obviously make a lot of sense for us to have one of his sons as a stallion prospect.”

The Aga Khan has two engaged, but only one live contender in the Jean-Claude Rouget-trained Keran (Fr) (Blue Point {Ire}), who was second to the gelding Lazzat (Fr) (Territories {Ire}) in the seven-furlong G3 Prix Djebel at Deauville last month. “Keran has worked very well and Jean-Claude Rouget thinks that he can stay a mile,” the Stud’s director Georges Rimaud said. “It’s a gamble that’s worth taking.”


Louise Procter In Deep In The Pouliches…

Unbeaten so far but untried in any kind of black-type contest, White Birch Farm’s TDN Rising Star Louise Procter (Fr) (Siyouni {Fr}) showed enough when dominating the seven-furlong Prix du Belvedere at Chantilly in March to suggest she will play a leading role in the G1 Poule d’Essai Pouliches. She certainly has a draw advantage over Godolphin’s G3 Prix Imprudence winner Romantic Style (Ire) (Night Of Thunder {Ire}), but she needs to have with the latter’s G3 Prix Imprudence form looking stronger by the day. After the stellar efforts of the second and third Ramatuelle (Justify) and Tamfana (Ger) (Soldier Hollow {GB}) in the 1000 Guineas and the G3 Chartwell S. success of Great Generation (Ire) (Holy Roman Emperor {Ire}) on Saturday, Charlie Appleby’s representative holds a distinct form edge. How she fares from stall 14 is another matter.

Ballydoyle’s G3 Staffordstown Stud S. winner and GI Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf fourth Content (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) looks to provide her late sire with a milestone 100th Group 1 winner, but the same caveat that applies to Henry Longfellow also applies here with her having her first start of the campaign. Scuderia Sagam’s G2 Premio Dormello and G3 Premio Primi Passi winner Folgaria (Ire) (Due Diligence) had the Guineas heroine Elmalka (GB) (Kingman {GB}) back in third when extending her tally in Newbury’s seven-furlong G3 Fred Darling S. and remains an unknown quantity.

Trainer Marco Botti is happy with the post position and said, “I was worried about a wide draw complicating things, but she has got a good draw. Hollie [Doyle] knows the filly well and this is another step up in class from Newbury, even with Roger Varian’s filly going on and winning the 1000 Guineas. The form is good and I still think a mile with a bend will suit her better than Newmarket and we think the track at Longchamp will suit her.”

Al Shira’aa Farms’ G2 Debutante S. winner and G1 Moyglare Stud S. runner-up Vespertilio (Fr) (Night Of Thunder {Ire}) is charting new territoty for trainer Willie McCreery who said, “We might get the ground we’re looking for and we’re happy with conditions. It’s going to be a tough ask, but I think she’s up to showing us her best. I hope the move up to a mile won’t be an issue and there are a lot of fillies doing the same in the race. It’s a tiny worry, but you have to be confident she will get it and Billy [Lee] will have to ride her like she is going to get it.”


Over To Los Angeles…

Ballydoyle do not at this stage have the normal clutch of Derby contenders at their disposal, with more beaten than successful in the trials so far this month, so the return of last year’s G1 Criterium de Saint-Cloud winner Los Angeles (Ire) (Camelot {GB}) in Sunday’s G3 Cashel Palace Hotel Derby Trial at Leopardstown carries extra significance. In the card’s G3 Al Shira’aa Racing “Mutamakina” S. for 3-year-old fillies over the mile trip of the upcoming Irish 1000 Guineas, the Goffs Million winner One Look (Ire) (Gleneagles {Ire}) is the dominant presence taking on Ballydoyle’s illustriously-bred G3 Ballylinch Stud Priory Belle S. third Buttons (Ire) (Kingman {GB}). Back at ParisLongchamp, the newly-downgraded G2 St Mark’s Basilica Coolmore Prix Saint-Alary hosts the G3 Prix Vanteaux winner Dare To Dream (Fr) (Camelot {GB}), who bids to continue trainer Gavin Hernon’s dream scenario that he mapped out at the track last month.

The post Henry Longfellow Bids For Classic Glory appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

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