Up And Quick (5m Buvetier d’Aunou-Fichtre) scored a decisive upset (11/1 odds) victory in today’s (Sunday's) Gr. I 240,000 euro Criterium for Five Year-Olds at Paris-Vincennes over 3000 meters.
After two false-starts, the starter sent 17 trotters on their way and driver Franck Nivard steered the winner (head number 16) directly to the front from his outside starting position. The Franck Leblanc trained, Ecurie Quick Star owned “youngster” repulsed all challengers and then opened a huge lead with about 1,000 meters remaining. Despite drifting across the track in the closing stages, Up And Quick was an easy winner in an eye-popping 1.11.5kr (1:55 mile rate) over the 1-7/8 mile course and from the turning start.
Uhland du Val and Univers de Pan took the next two spots. This race, the Quinte+ of the day, paid 5,904 euros for a two euro wager. The jackpot was 5.25 million euro this day.
There were four other top class events on the well-attended card. The Gr. II Prix Uranie (2700 meters, 120,000 euro purse) for three year-old fillies went well-regarded Axelle Dark ( 3f Ready Cash-Queen des Charmes) driven by Joseph Verbeeck for owner/trainer Phillipe Allaire. This beautiful filly scored in 1.14.7kr at 2/1 odds to raise her career earnings close to the 450,000 euro mark. Anastasia Fella (3f Goetmals Wood-Jeann’s Fella) was second for Franck Nivard while Avila (3f Ready Cash-Encombevineuse) took third for trainer/driver Thierry Duvaldestin. The Dubois family finished fourth through sixth with Amandine Fly (by Rocklyn), Alisma du Corta (by Love You) and Africaine (by Oiseau des Feux).
The three year-old males contested the Gr. II Prix Victor Regis for 120,000 euro over the 2700 meter course. Even money favorite Akim du Cap Vert (3m First de Retz-Prima du Cap Vert) won this event for owner/trainer/driver Franck Anne in 1.13.5kr to increase his earnings to over 360,000 euro, in this his fifth win in 17 starts. All Feeling (3m Otello Pierji-Quelle Cerencaise) took second for Christophe Martens with Alberic (3m Goetmals Wood-Oublies Moi) third with Franck Nivard aboard.
The monte featured Prix Camille Lepecq for 120,000 euro purse over 2700 meters (the “grande piste”) resulted in a 7/1 odds victory for Sourire du Voutre (7g Gazouillis-Goella) and jockey Franck Nivard who enjoyed a very successful day. He scored in 1.13.7kr for owner/trainer Franck Leblanc (also with a top performing day at the races) over a classy field. Top mare Santa Rosa France (7f Kaisy Dream-Helise France) took second for Pierre-Yves Verva with Paladin Bleu (10m Jag de Bellouet-Une Picolina) third for Mlle. M. Grolier. Horses finishing fourth through sixth were Tiaga du Rib, Rive Droite and Pluto du Vivier, all winners of over 500,000 euro lifetime.
The 105,000 euro Prix de Beaugency over 2850 meters went to the great mare Quoumba de Guez (9f Urfist des Pres-Vanina de Mareuil) for owner Ecurie Vautors and trainer/driver Jean-Michel Bazire. She scored easily in 1.14.3kr at 3/1 odds over an excellent European field to raise her career earnings to just under 1.2 million euro. She now has 18 career wins in 91 starts. The next six finishers all started the day with earnings of over 425,000 euro. Twist des Caillons (6m Jam Pridem-Hayra des Caillons) was second for Eric Raffin with Marielles (7f Kick Tail-Egido Play) third for David Thomain. Franck Nivard piloted Napolean Bar (6m Varenne-Dalmazia) home fourth.
by Thomas H. Hicks