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News In Brief

20 January 2021

Last Friday, France Galop and Le Trot announced a series of new health measures targeting drivers and jockeys regarding Covid19. Race times will be adjusted to meet that of the regional 6pm curfew with the start of the first French race moving forward by half-an-hour. The race schedule will remain unchanged due to the reduction in time between races allowing the meetings to finish 1 hour and 30 minutes ahead of the original timings. 

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Antoine Hamelin made a strong march at Sha Tin on Sunday taking out five of the ten races staged. The five-timer came as a relief for the French rider who had been struggling for winners recently admitting the competition was tough. Speaking to the Hong Kong press the jockey went on to say, “It’s a crazy day, amazing, I’m very happy,” he said. “It’s been a little quiet, but today I’m jockey of the day. 

The achievement bettered his previous record of a four-timer at Fontainebleau

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Coolmore have looked towards Vadamos in their attempt to strengthen the National Hunt stallion roster for the 2021 season. Formerly at Tally-Ho Stud, the recruit will stand at Grange Stud at a fee of €6,000. 

Vadamos's first crop has just turned three and includes 14 individual winners during their juvenile season, with the Karl Burke-trained Spycatcher and Joseph O’Brien trained Messidor both standouts. 

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The AQPS champion Envoi Allen, bred by Bruno Vagne, remained unbeaten in twelve outings delivering a three-and-a-half length success at Punchestown on Sunday. With the likely challenger Asterion Forlonge (FR) falling at the first Envoi Allen was left in front from an early stage and the unbeaten son of Muhtathir could stroll home on his accord. 

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With entries for the lucrative meeting in Saudi Arabia closing last week it was no surprise to see plenty of French representatives. Amongst those was Holdthasigreen winner of the 2018 G1 Prix Royal Oak (3100m) winner and 2019 G1 Prix du Cadran (4000m). The Jean-Michel Baudouin trained nine-year-old looks set for a potential tilt at the Long-Distance Turf Handicap, where last year’s winner Call The Wind is among the entries with fellow French trained horses; Alkuin, Sublimis and Ateem

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There was reason for celebration as Laura Planchenault recorded her 50th career success at Vincennes recently. It was fitting that the success came aboard the mare Douchka Wind (Timoko), whom she rode when recording her first career victory. The pair have teamed up on seven occasions recording five wins and two seconds. Douchka Wind will now be retired and stand at stud. 

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The following news has broken ahead of the G1 Prix de Cornulier at Vincennes. The Levesque camp trained pair Dexter Fromentro and Flicka de Blary look set to participate with Camille Levesque partnering the mare. A ride is yet to be decided for Dexter Fromentro. Zlatan and Belle Louise Mabon remains on the entry list, but both are unlikely to feature. The first will head to the Prix du Luxembourg and the second to a more closed event during the Prix d'Amérique weekend. 

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Dahlia du Rib has produced his first winner as a sire following the success of Icare du Rib in the Prix Fernand Léger at Argentan on Sunday. Owned, trained and driven by Joël Hallais he stepped forward on his debut at Vire in December to run out a comfortable winner. 

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French-bred runners came to the fore in the G3 Astra Stakes on Sunday evening at Santa Anita. Quick (Olympic Glory) lead home a 1-2 for trainer John Sadler as Hermaphrodite (Le Havre) finished second. The third spot was filled by Altea (Siyouni) trained by Michael McCarthy

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