Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Prix de l'abbaye

Sunday sees this years running of the main French Group 1 sprint race the Prix de l'abbaye at Longchamp.

Last season Move In Time was successful for David O'Meara in a time of 56.42s and become the 28th British trained winner of the race in 40 odd years and his own record at the track now reads 2211.
His latest win came on 13th September in the Group 3 Qatar Prix Du Petit Convert at the expense of Gengis and old rival Mirza (1051573) in 2nd and 3rd in a time of 57.30s. The previous years running of that race saw Mirza beat Move In Time by half a length in a faster run race (55.68s) on going described as Good.

The going is often given as very soft/heavy at Longchamp although the times never seem to reflect that - unless the distance is slightly shorter than 5f.

This year there are the usual number of British contenders to take on their French counterparts and although the draw often plays a big part in this race it may be wise to have a bet now and then have another look nearer the time.

Mecca's Angel would appear to have an outstanding chance  for Michael Dods. She ran at the course back in May in the Group 3 Prix Du Saint George and won by a comfortable 2 lengths on going described as Good to Soft in a time of 55.24s, she was drawn in stall 11 and Maarek the 2013 Prix de l'abbaye winner finished in 4th.

The last horse to win from a double figure draw was Marchand D'or in 2008 - stall 20 so Mecca's Angel comfortable win from stall 11 in May looks even better with that in mind.

Her Jockey as usual will be Paul Mulrennan who recently spoke to Attheraces about her chances "She's in great condition and I'm really looking forward to it. They're calling the ground soft at the moment and hopefully it stays like that. The ground should be perfect for her, you've got to remember she broke the track record out there on good ground. As long as it's good or good to soft and as long as there's no jar we'll be going there next week and we couldn't be happier with her - we all saw how good she was at York. Her coat is great, her weight is good and she was jumping out of her skin. It's hard to believe she only won a Group One a few weeks ago, all credit to Michael, he's been keeping a lid on her."

At a best price of 3/1 with several bookmakers she looks well worth a bet to follow up her Group 1 Nunthorpe win on what is likely to be her favoured going.

An outsider could be 2013 winner Maarek who finished with a rattle behind Mecca's Angel in  May and this Pivotal gelding is also well served by going on the soft side. Granted a reasonable draw the 20/1 currently quoted by Paddy Power could be too high.

Mecca's Angel - 1 point win
Maarek - 0.5 point each way

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Next Up !

After the big meeting at Ayr with it's Gold, Silver and Bronze cups the next big race on the British sprint calendar is the the Coral Sprint Trophy at York on Saturday 10th 0ctober 2015 at which the cup races run at Ayr usually have a say in the outcome. 
Spinatrix has been at the top of the handicap with a mark of 105 for the last two years - winning last year. 
Here are a few more facts to wet your appetite over the coming weeks :

Draw Record last 7 years :
2014 : 9, 4, 16, 6 ( 19 ran) Good to Soft - Connor Beasley (3) - Winning Time : 1m 13.26s
2013 : 4, 13, 3, 14 (19) Good - P J McDonald
2012 : 14, 8, 9, 20 (14) Soft
2011 : 19, 6, 10, 18 (20) Good
2010 : 15, 8, 2, 4 (20) Soft
2009 : 9, 13, 17, 4 (20) Good
2008 : No Race
Age of Winner : 6, 6, 8, 3, 5, 4
Weight of Winner : 9.7 (2014)
Result :
2014 : 1st Spinatrix, 2nd Highland Acclaim, 3rd Another Wise Kid, 4th Rene Mathis
2013 : 1st Mass Rally, 2nd Seeking Magic, Hallelujah, 4th Jimmy Styles
2012 : 1st Regal Parade, 2nd Louis The Pious, 3rd Sirius Prospect, 4th Misplaced Fortune
2011 : 1st Sirius Prospect, 2nd Kaldoun Kingdom, 3rd Racy, 4th Sioux Rising
2010 : 1st Fathsta, 2nd Damien, 3rd Irish Heartbeat, 4th Parisian Pyramid
2009 : 1st Kaldoun Kingdom, 2nd Cheveton, 3rd Hitchens, 4th Green Manalishi
2008 : No Race
2014 Racing Post Analysis
A typically competitive heat and, having originally split into two groups, the whole field merged within 2f of the start and came more or less centre to stands´ side.
SPINATRIX was fifth in this last year off the same mark, but the ground was softer this time around and that proved the key to her defying top weight. She´s been in good form lately and the Wentworth Stakes, in which she was third last year, was mentioned as a possible short-term target.
Highland Acclaim gets plenty of credit for coming from off the pace to challenge in a race where it paid to race handily. His rider did pick up a nine-day ban for overuse of the whip, however.

Pre Race Comments:
Spinatrix - "Spinatrix is in good form and the ground is coming right. She ran a cracker at Ripon, but this is competitive and she has a tough job at the weights".
Another Wise Kid - "It's a tough competitive race but he has run really well all year and was unlucky in the Great St Wilfrid at Ripon".

Post Race Comments:
Spinatrix - "I was pleased when I saw the only other speed horses were drawn well away from Spinatrix. I said to Connor go forward and do your own thing. We might go for the Wentworth Stakes at Doncaster, and there´s a Listed race at Fontainebleau on November 20. She has not had a lot of racing this year because of the ground".