The French are preparing for an invasion, and they’ve called for the cavalry to protect honour, glory and the small matter of half a million euros in the final of the UET Masters Series.
The French legion which will attempt to win the first ever Masters Series final at Vincennes is headed by the world’s best trotter Ready Cash, his heir apparent Timoko plus a recent world record breaker Save The Quick in what must be admitted is a much stronger race than last year’s inaugural running in Solvalla.
The Masters Series is a brilliant concept and It has certainly been enhanced with the inclusion of such highly rated French horses such as Ready Cash who has won two Prix D’Amerique and was also runner-up in the world’s greatest race in a career in which he has won 35 times in 57 starts and amassed over €4million.
This season he relinquished his Prix D’Amerique crown to Royal Dream, another from the remarkable R generation, but then bounced back the following week to beat his rival in the Group I Grand Prix de France, his third win in that event. He then won the Grand Prix de Paris - another Group I over the marathon 4000m - before settling down to stud duties. The 8-year-old son of Imoko resumed his racing career in July with another win, in a low level race.
Thierry Duvaldestin’s champion warmed up for this event in the Group I GP de Wallonie at Mons in Belgium where he went off stride when being switched from the trail by regular pilot Jos Verbeeck to try and pass Timoko when full of running.
It was a rare mistake by the French superstar who will be right at home in Vincnnes and keen to make amends against his younger rival, the undisputed star of the T generation, which is also fashioning a glowing reputation.
Timoko, like Ready Cash, is already performing stud duties, and very popular as a winner of both the Criterium des 3 and 4 Ans, but he does not take a break while performing them, still managing to fit in a full racing schedule which included a trip to Solvalla for the Elitloppet, where he finished third in the final.
Richard Westerink’s star is an accomplished sprinter, with his wins this season having been all over the shorter distances, 2300m in the GI Prix de Wallonie, 2100 in the Prix d’Atlantique at Enghien and a mile in both the Prix de Washington (Vincennes) and Grand Criterium de Vitesse at Cagnes Sur Mer. He finished third to Ready Cash in the GP de France over 2100m.
And Timoko has also never finished better than fourth in this company over the 2700m distances with a fourth in Prix Kerjacques and he was seventh in the Prix d’Amerique. The 2700m may still be beyond him, especially when the pace is likely to be forced with the likes of Save The Quick in the field
Franck LeBlanc’s world record breaking mare stunned the world with her run in the European Championship for mares.
She has a string of second placings in some of the biggest races in the world, including last year’s Prix Du Cornulier (the world’s richest monte at 700,000) and also in the first UET Masters Series final in Solvalla last year. She was also second in the European Championship for mares the previous year too. Can she go one better in this race too. She is certainly capable, if Ready Cash has an off day.
Roxane Griff is the best mare of the great R generation, lying third overall in earnings to Ready Cash and the recently retired gelding Rapide Lebel. She may have had only 14 wins in 62 career starts but several have been at this track, at this distance, in this company. She has also amassed a string of placings in the world’s biggest races – including a second in the Prix D’Amerique. She is a dead set stayer (due no doubt to her 85% French bloodlines) and even though she has not had one of her best years, this is the sort of race she excels in.
The Best Madrik is Jean Etienne Dubois’ stable star – he ranks number two on earnings behind his great rival Timoko, the pair being the only millionaires so far in this generation, although Texas Charm will soon join them.
The Best Madrik won the Criterium des 5 Ans after finishing third in the Prix d’Amerique earlier in 2012 and this year finished second in the Hugo Abergs Memorial in July and finished fifth a fortnight ago in the Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere at Enghien in a warm up for this race. A rising star but perhaps a year too early.
Reve de Beylev is another R generation and the sixth millionaire from the crop and has had a stellar year with second placings in his last five outings, all Group II s worth over €100,000 . He has been a model of consistency without cracking a big win in the top echelon, one of those unfortunates to be in a generation without peer. He is the outsider of the French contingent but deserves his place on this year’s form.
This may be the best field ever assembled in Europe, with the best geldings like Elitloppet winners Commander Crowe and Nahar getting a rare chance at the Temple of Trot to run on the great track, for a great prize, in a great field.
Sit back and enjoy European and world trotting at its finest on Saturday, at Vincennes , Paris, France.
FINALE UET TROTTING MASTERS 2013
Vincennes, FRANCE 500,000 Group I 4-10 2700m
1. BAGLEY (GERMANY, UET rank: 27)
(8g Bartali Ok (IT)-Novel Boshoeve (DE))
Owner: Dagmar & Thomas Bosner
Trainer: Conrad Lugauer, Jagersro
74 starts 18 wins €368,582
Best kilometer rate: 1'09"9
SEASON’S FORM: 51534221132
2. ON TRACK PIRATEN (SWEDEN, UET rank: 33)
(5g Kool du Caux (FR)-Monrovia (SE))
Owner: Stall Mörkermasse
Trainer: Hans Strömberg , Rattvik
Driver: Pierre Vercruysse
€ 393,411 42 starts 9 wins
Best kilometer rate: 1'11"3
SEASON’S FORM: 06036103301
3. SANITY (SWEDEN, UET rank: 27)
(7g Love You (FR)-Flash Light (SE))
Owner: Stall Sanity
Trainer: Malin Lofgren, Solvalla
Driver: Jarmo Niskanen
€716,395 59 starts 25 wins
Best kilometer rate: 1'09"2
SEASON’S FORM: 32d623340310
4. NAHAR (SWEDEN, UET rank: 5)
(8g Love You (FR)-Mahonny Broline (SE))
Owner: Stall Sedin
Trainer: Robert Bergh, Bergsaker
Driver: Robert Bergh
€1,031,825 70 starts 24 wins
Best kilometer rate: 1'09"7
SEASON’S FORM: 5d26114d12112d10
5. REVE DE BEYLEV (FRANCE, UET rank: 17)
(8h Fortuna Fant (FR)-Heloise Poterie (FR))
Owner: Ecurie D.H. du Haras de l'Epinay
Trainer: Sebastien Guarato
Driver: Dominik Locqueneux
€1,089,260 77 starts 14 wins
Best kilometer rate: 1'09"5
SEASON’S FORM: 591d36822222
6. BRAD DE VELUWE (FINLAND, UET rank: 6)
(5h Andover Hall (US)-Amazing Ride (FI))
Owner: Lars Ingman
Trainer: Tomas Korvenoja
Driver: Tomas Korvenoja
€1 091 655,00 34 starts 23 wins
Best kilometer rate: 1'09"7
SEASON’S FORM: 1221431544
7. THE BEST MADRIK (FRANCE, UET rank: 14)
(6h Coktail Jet (FR)-Lady Madrik (FR))
Owner: Ecurie Victoria Dreams
Trainer: J.E. Dubois
Driver: Jean Etienne Dubois
€1,294,110 52 starts 13 wins
Best kilometer rate: 1'10"1
SEASON’S FORM: 65525863325
8. SAVE THE QUICK (FRANCE, UET rank: 7)
(Jasmin de Flore (FR)-Heureuse Duchesse (FR))
Owner: Ecurie E. Quick Star
Trainer: Franck Leblanc
Driver: B Goop
€1,395,079 62 starts 11 wins :
Best kilometer rate: 1'10"5
SEASON’S FORM: 0d68664460313
9. MAIN WISE AS (ITALY, UET rank: 11)
(7h Yankee Glide (US)-Desert Flower K (US))
Owner: Ecurie Gerrits Recycling
Trainer: Mike Lenders
Driver: Pierre Levesque
€1,473,080 48 starts 10 wins
Best kilometer rate: 1'10"5
SEASON’S FORM: 03ddd84296433
10. ROXANE GRIFF (FRANCE, UET rank: 27)
(8m Tenor de Baune (FR)-Julia Mesloise (FR))
Owner: Ecurie Griff
Trainer: S. Guarato
Driver: Eric Raffin
€1,605,118 79 starts 14 wins
Best kilometer rate: 1'10"2
SEASON’S FORM: 000334dd3
11. TIMOKO (FRANCE, UET rank: 2)
(6h Imoko (FR)-Kiss Me Coulonces (FR))
Owner: Richard Westerink
Trainer: Richard Westerink
Driver: Jos Verbeeck
€1,832,230 48 starts 19 wins
Best kilometer rate: 1.10.0
SEASON’S FORM: 3737114312111
12. COMMANDER CROWE (SWEDEN, UET rank: 9)
(10g Juliano Star (FR)- Somack (FI))
Owner: Smogarps Gard AB
Trainer: Fabrice Solouy
Driver: Jean Michel Bazire
€3,410,612 89 starts 55 wins
Best kilometer rate: 1'08"9
SEASON’S FORM: d100261126
13. READY CASH (FRANCE, UET rank: 3)
(8h Indy de Vive (FR) - Kidea (FR))
Owner: Philippe Allaire
Trainer: Thierry Duvaldestin
Driver: Franck Nivard
€4,014 300 57 starts 35 wins
Best kilometer rate: 1'10"3
SEASON’S FORM: 2111d
by David Sanders