The French 2000 Guineas, better known as the Poule D’essai Des Poulains, is a superb looking race on paper and it could be argued it’s a stronger renewal than the English equivalent last week. The only reason Camelot, clearly a mile and a half horse, manged to win was because of the weakness of the challengers over a mile. This can only be supported by the fact the second horse home, French Fifteen, was a French raider.
Twelve runners look set to line up on Sunday at Longchamp, but where better place to start than the warm favourite, Dabirsim. He lost his unbeaten record in the Prix De Fontainbleau when Christophe Soumillion completely misjudged the ride and left himself too much to do to catch the re-opposing Dragon Pulse. Christophe Soumillion certainly won’t be making the same mistake this time, and with a fast pace guaranteed in the race due to Aiden O’Briens pacemaker Vault, he should settle much better than he did when losing his unbeaten run last time out. Connections have made no secret of his ability and he is the class act in the field. He’ll need some luck in running, but he’ll be bang there in the finish. He’s current 13/8 favourite with William Hill.
Aiden O’Brien’s main chance Furner’s Green has Joseph O’Brien in the saddle, and he’s another jockey who will be playing it safe following St. Nicholas Abbeys defeat last week at long odds on. Furner’s Green is certainly a quality racehorse, and the fact he has such mixed form figures in his juvenile year should not be overlooked. It was another expensive time for punters last week when stable second string Homecoming Queen won the 1000 Guineas with average form figures of 63965431210 in her juvenile season. Furner’s Green is another that is still progressing and should be staying on in the final furlong, however the concern is he’s appeared best on good ground which he may not get at Longchamp on Sunday. Of more interest is Dragon Pulse, who took Dabarism’s unbeaten record last time out. He’s a proven top class colt in his own right, as proven by his capability to ruffle Dabirsim’s feathers and he was able to get within half a length of Power in the Group 1 Goffs National Stakes at the Curragh. It’s important not to forget that he’s still improving too, he looks a rock solid alternative if the favourite isn’t firing on all cylinders. However there is no EW play in his price.
Coupe De Ville is another alternative that shouldn’t be overlooked. He put up a career best last week in the 2000 Guineas, getting to within four lengths of the classy Camelot. He too is open to bundles of improvement and Richard Hughes will be sitting tight and producing him late. He could be an EW alternative in the race at a standout 12/1 with Ladbrokes. Of the others, Amaron is a classy German sprinter who is a double Group 3 winner. Interestingly he has beaten Pakal twice, a horse that finished second to French Fifteen last November, so he isn’t discounted easily on the form and could prove to be a big price at 25/1.
However in my opinion, the race looks at the mercy of Dabirsim. He looks the classiest in the field and has less to prove than most, and if settling much better than on his second start of his three year old campaign, he looks a cracking bet at 13/8 with William Hill.
Selection: Dabirsim 13/8 WIN (Bet with William Hill)
Alternative: Amaron 25/1 EW (Bet with Paddy Power)
Photo Credits: france-galop.com, tattersalls-millions.com