Milord the the pick of Georges Courtois field
24 November 2017
The Prix Georges Courtois takes pride of place on Sunday’s programme at Auteuil. A G.2 chase for older horses and run over 4400m (2¾m), it offers a total prize fund of €240,000 with €108,000 going to the winning connections.
The training centre of Dragey, close to Le Mont-Saint-Michel in the west of France, is particularly well-represented in this coveted race and may prevent the spoils returning to Royan after Guillaume Macaire won with Belle La Vie twelve months ago.
Topping the list is the evergreen Milord Thomas who finished second to Bipolaire in the G.1 Prix La Haye Jousselin on his chasing comeback three weeks ago. In the words of his handler, Dominique Bressou, “He had a real race in the Haye Jousselin and has recovered nicely. His leg issues are behind him now. Every time he runs, he gets better and I think he’s in great shape at the moment.”
Sainte Turgeon, who also worked on Tuesday, was brought down along with So French earlier in the month, but trainer Patrice Quinton was nonetheless looking forward. “She worked really well. She was unlucky in the Haye Jousselin. That’s racing, but I would have liked here to have at least finished the race. She was at 200% that day, and I think she is still as good right now.”
Winner of the Georges Courtois in 2013, Al Bucq most recently ran fourth in a competitive G.2 at Compiègne. According to Patrick Chevillard, the 11 year-old pleased in a piece of work over 2200m (1m3f). “He has not raced at Auteuil since April 2016 but he has run there so often and knows it so well.”
With two of the Dragey trio representing the biggest earners in the field, and given the dearth of numbers, chances are good that the trophy will return to the region.
Picture: Milord Thomas
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