PARISLONGCHAMP TIPS: All the best bets for Thursday’s 10-card meeting as racing returns in France with Ocean Atlantique, Pao Alto and Another Sky set to battle it out in Prix La Force
- Thursday’s 10-race card features well-bred and unexposed three-year-olds
- French Derby prospect Ocean Atlantique seeks to land the Prix La Force
- Unbeaten Emoji and Flighty Lady set for a duel in the Prix Vanteaux
With British racing not resuming until June 1 at the earliest, French racing, shown live on Sky Sports Racing, continues to fill the void.
SAM TURNER (Robin Goodfellow) runs the rule over the most interesting runners on Thursday’s 10-race card at Longchamp.
The Paris track stages intriguing trials for the French middle-distance Classics with the Prix la Force and the Prix Vanteaux both featuring a host of well-bred and unexposed three-year-olds.
Thursday’s 10-race card at Longchamp features well-bred and unexposed three-year-olds
OCEAN ATLANTIQUE (10.40am) bids to land the trial for the males in Prix La Force and could prove a huge threat to likely market rivals Pao Alto and Another Sky if he is allowed to dominate from the front like when winning at Saint-Cloud last October.
Rider Pierre-Charles Boudot grabbed the initiative from the stalls that day and the son of American Triple Crown winner American Pharoah relished the isolation to power clear in the straight and impart his own brand of social distancing on eight toiling rivals.
A $1.1million dollar purchase, Ocean Atlantique looks likely to have made physical improvement from two to three and his attitude should stand him in good stead as he tries to lay down a marker for the French Derby.
The fillies’ trial half an hour later (Prix Vanteaux) may well signal a captivating duel between the unbeaten Emoji and FLIGHTY LADY (11.10am), who makes her debut for trainer Jean-Claude Rouget following a close-season switch from Gavin Hernon’s stable.
The selection wound up her juvenile campaign with a highly-creditable display behind Albigna in the Group One Prix Marcel Boussac at the Arc meeting last autumn, staying on in good fashion to claim third close home.
Flighty Lady could give Rouget a strong hand in the French Oaks now she tackles a stiffer test of stamina on her seasonal reappearance.
Rouget has made an excellent start to the French Flat season and already houses a live 1,000 Guineas contender in Simeen following her narrow last-to-first win in the Prix de la Pistole at Chantilly on Wednesday.
Christophe Soumillon’s mount was unbeaten in two juvenile starts but was taking a step up in company in this mile heat.
Betfair make Simeen the 5-1 second favourite for next month’s fillies’ Classic behind Tropbeau, who was a winner at Longchamp on Monday.
George Rimaud, manager for Simeen’s owner the Aga Khan, said: ‘We’re very pleased, she’s still unbeaten and she seemed to have an easy win today. We couldn’t expect anything better, so we are pleased.”