Quality in spades this weekend at Auteuil
10 November 2023
Thélème, star of the show in Saturday's Grand Prix d'Automne at Auteuil
Annual highlight of the French jumps calendar, the 48h de l’Obstacle will be staged this weekend at its traditional home of Auteuil. Such is the importance of the meeting that four of the nine Grade 1 races on the domestic programme will be run over Saturday and Sunday.
Showpiece of Day 1 is the G.1 Grand Prix de l’Automne which gathers the best staying hurdlers willing to tackle an exacting 4800m. Winner of the 2022 edition, Thélème is the standout and Arnaud Chaillé-Chaillé will be eager to land this before sending his charge on a cross-Channel campaign. Ine Anjou, La Chenevière and Vae Patron represent the principal opposition.
Saturday’s card also figures the G.2 Prix Congress, otherwise considered the Grand Steeple des 3 Ans. Impressive winner over 3500m at Auteuil recently, Kaadam is expected to confirm, but will be opposed by Royal Saga, Dschingis Love, and Game Of Storm.
With implications for future broodmare value, the G.2 Prix Bournosienne, a hurdles event restricted to 3 year-old fillies and run over 3600m, rounds off the Group action. Kara Diamond, La Spezia and Funny Berry are all in with a shout.
Aside from the Prix la Haye Jousselin chase on Sunday (see Article 1 Add link), the coveted Prix Cambacérès will draw the crème of 3 year-old hurdlers. Gr.2 winner mid-October, Jigme is the one to watch, although Master D’Oc and Léon Du Berlais also warrant respect.
Seldom does an average horse win the G.1 Prix Maurice Gillois, or Grand Steeple des 4 Ans, and this year’s edition is no exception. G.1 winner, Juntos Guanamos, reassured in the Prix Orcada last month, followed in by Jazzy Senam and Jardin D’Arthel, Cédric Boutin’s gelding once again looking the most attractive choice.
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