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Weekly Round Up

20 October 2020

Although the feature meeting of the week included the Grand Steeplechase de Paris and Grande Course de Haies d’Auteuil, it wasn’t only Auteuil who hosted outstanding action this week. There were also multiple feature Black Type events conducted last week across all codes – jumping, trotting and flat.   


Auteuil conducted a weekend of jumping action with some of the biggest hurdle and chase events of the year being run.   

Saturday’s fixture included the G3 Prix Haras d'Etreham - Prix Magne Hurdle (3600m) for three-year-old fillies where Hôtesse du Chênet (by Martaline) raced stand side and duelled with Astadame in the final strides for a narrow win which followed up her course and distance G3 Prix de Chambly success despite a 3kg penalty.   

There was an impressively easy victory for jockey Thomas Coutant and trainer Arnaud Chaillé-Chaillé with Fantastic Sivola twelve lengths clear of the field in the G3 Prix Montgomery chase (4700m).    

The feature event was the G1 Grande Course de Haies d'Auteuil (5100m) where the David Cottin trained Paul's Saga reeled in the well supported L'Autonomie down the home straight to provide a surprise victory for jockey Kévin Nabet. The Francois Nicolle contender looked hard to beat in the final circuit when clear on the outside but L’Automomie was unable to see out the distance. It was a first Grade One victory for trainer David Cottin, a former champion jumps jockey.

Sunday at Auteuil was another high-class day with ten races on the programme.    

The Listed Prix Prince d'Ecouen handicap hurdle (3900m) for five-years old and above went to Bonaparte Sizing who travelled on the outside of the track delivering a win for jockey Morgan Regairaz and trainer Jehan Bertran De Balanda. 

Trainer Arnaud Chaillé-Chaillé achieved another Graded success over the weekend as Thélème scored in the G2 Prix Georges de Talhouët-Roy Hurdle (3600m) for three-year olds. Staying on at the line, the gelding has proved himself at G2 level.   

The G3 Prix Pierre de Lassus Hurdle (3900m) went the way of James du Berlais who was well supported and made a diving run towards the stand side. His acceleration in the closing stages was impressive.   

The feature race on the card was the rescheduled G1 Grand Steeple-Chase de Paris (6000m), the biggest steeplechase on the calendar. Bipolaire (runner-up in 2019) set a slow pace in the early stages and was the only faller throughout. This occurred at the famous open ditch, unseating jockey Gaëtan Masure.  

Docteur de Ballon settled in the rear and made gradual progress in the final 800m. His clean jumping and finishing speed ensured an entry into the history books, providing Bertrand Lestrade and trainer Louisa Carberry with a special win. The rising star of the chasing division, Figuero finished second with Feu Follet third. Last year’s winner, Carriacou was fourth.   


Jean-Michel Bazire continued his dominance proving successful last Wednesday at Angers in the G3 Grand National du Trot (Prix d'Angers Loire Métropole) (3100m) with the barefoot Elie de Beaufour producing an excellent performance and never looking in any trouble.    

Last Friday night, Vincennes hosted the Union of European Trotting’s (UET) feature meeting of the season.   

Spectators witnessed one of the finishes of the year in the G1 Grand Prix de l'U.E.T. (2100m) for four-year olds. Power was able to take glory for Sweden by a nose from the French challenger Green Grass.    

The G1 Championnat Européen des 3 Ans (2100m) for three-year olds saw Helgafell achieve his second Group One, having previously scored in the G1 Prix Albert Viel (2700m) earlier in the summer.   

The Abrivard family owned, trained and driven runner scored in the five-year-old division with barefoot Féerie Wood taking the G1 Championnat Européen des 5 Ans (2100m). She quickened in good style to prevail for another exciting finish with multiple rivals closing late.   

Caen hosted the G3 international Prix de la Ville de Caen (4400m) for five to ten-year olds on Saturday. This is the longest Black Type race in French trotting, and it was Bugsy Malone who was just able to hang on for victory in the home straight to defend his title for a second win in this contest. The nine-year-old gelding showed courage to fend off the fast finishing Brillant Madrik.    


Saint-Cloud’s nine race card last Wednesday featured one black type event – The Listed Prix du Ranelagh (1600m). Célestin settled at the back and made eye-catching progress as the field came stand side to draw clear for a four-length victory. By Dabirsim (Winner of the 2011 G1 Prix Jean-Luc Lagardère 1400m), he looks a promising three-year-old.   

ParisLongchamp hosted a ten-race meeting on Thursday afternoon.    

Thalyia gained black type winning status as a five-year-old in the Listed Prix Casimir Delamarre - Fonds Européen de l'Elevage (1800m) for fillies and mares. Despite a wide draw, Thalyia responded well to pressure from jockey Stéphane Pasquier with a clear run on the outside and extended the lead in the final 150 meters. This success provided Motivator with his thirty-first individual stakes winner.    

It was a sixteenth Black Type individual stakes success for Coolmore’s new recruit Wootton Bassett when the well supported Speak Of The Devil appeared to have plenty left in the Listed Prix de Saint-Cyr (1400m) for three year old fillies. This was a return to form after being beaten a nose in the G1 Poule d’Essai des Pouliches (1600m) at Deauville and another notable success for ‘Arc’ winning jockey Cristian Demuro.