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Anglo-Irish armada hits Auteuil

16 May 2015

Auteuil’s Grand Steeple weekend festival has attracted 7 Anglo-Irish raiders. Tomorrow, Saturday, English trainers Paul Nicholls and David Pipe will be represented by Silsol and Ballynagour in the Group 2 Prix La Barka (4300m, hurdles, 5yo+) while Ireland’s Willie Mullins will have Gitane du Berlais. The coalition has done particularly well in this event as Mullins won it in 2012 and 2014 with Thousand Stars (photo) and Nicholls landed the 2013 edition with Celestial Halo.

Make Believe and Ervedya lift French Guineas

11 May 2015

About 10,000 racegoers were present at Longchamp yesterday to watch Ervedya and Make Believe impressively lift the French 1000 and 2000 Guineas, displaying diametrically opposite styles. Indeed, it was a wire-to-wire win for the André Fabre’s charge Make Believe (photo), on who Olivier Peslier made good use of his handy n° 4 draw in a big 18-runner field to bag the Poule d’Essai des Poulains for owner Al Faisal, while Jean-Claude Rouget’s Ervedya, sporting the Aga Khan silks, came with a magnificent burst from the rear when Christophe Soumillon asked the filly to produce her run. The colt returned a time of 1'36''85, just 4/10th of a second slower than the filly.

French Guineas, Sunday

07 May 2015

Just a week after their British equivalents, the French Guineas will play out at Longchamp on Sunday. There will be a big 19-runner field for the Poule d’Essai des Poulains where 11 French-trained colts take on 8 foreign raiders, including 3 from Aidan O’Brien’s yard who had the answer to both Newmarket’s 1,000 and 2,000 Guineas last week (photo). He is sending over 2014 Phoenix Stakes winner Dick Whittington who was beaten on his reappearance by Charley Hills’ Muhaarar (also at the post), as well as Highland Reel, not seen since his Group 2 win at Goodwood last July.

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