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The 88,000€ purse Premio Citta di Torino was raced Sunday at Torino Italy over 2060 meters by a good harness racing field of four year olds.   Victory went to 1.12.5kr timed Zacon Gio (4m Ruty Grif-May Glide Font SM) trained by Holger Ehlert and reined by Roberto Vecchione.   He rallied on the backside on the final lap to defeat Zlatan (4m Napoleon Bar-Nastassia Bi) with G.P.Minnucci aboard. Ziosauro Jet (4m Maharajah- Liberte) took third ahead of Vidana Grif (4m Ready Cash) and Zilath (4m Maharajah) completed the top five.   The winner’s pedigree:     On Saturday other trots in Europe included the LC Peterson Broddas Minne at Jagersro, this an Olympiatravet trial for 200,000SEK first money.   The 1.11.4kr timed winner over the 2140 meters autostart course, was 9.6/1 Day Or Night In (7m Muscle Hill-Ellie America-Buvetier d’Aunou) with Peter Untersteiner aboard and Invexbro AB and trainer Yohan Untersteiner. 3/1 Cyber Lane (6g Raja Mirchi- Sybaris Hanover-Cantab Hall) was second for Johan Untersteiner and 3/1 Racing Mange (6m Orlando Vici-Kara Kickan-Alf Palema) was third with Joakim Lovgren up.   Thomas H. Hicks

Sunday’s first leg of the prestigious Trophee Vert series (purse 45,000€, 2650 meters distance handicap, 16 starters) drew a big audience at Hippodrome d’Oraison.   The 1.21.9 timed victory went to 162/1 odds outsider Aulne Planais (9g Orsy Dream-Fella Josselyn) reined by trainer Christopher Haret for owner G.J. Brunet.   He scored for the ninth time in 87 career starts now for 166,230€ in life earnings. 16/1 Vencedor (10m Prodigious), handicapped 25 meters, was second for David Bekaert and third was 5.9/1 Comte du Vivier (7g Prince Gede) handled by Franck Jamard, this one also handicapped 25 meters.   The 2.1/1 favorite Visitor finished eighth.   Replay: http://info.pmu.fr/live-et-replay?num-reunion=4&num-course=5&date-fr=07042019 The same day at Avenches was the Grand Prix de Printemps (purse 10,663€, 2400 meters) that brought together the best aged trotteurs in Switzerland. The 1/5 odds favorite Uza Joselyn (8f Love You-Teza Josselyn) scored timed in 1.15.6kr for trainer Rene Aebischer, owner Ecurie Rhythm and Blues and reinsman Gabriele Gelormini. Uza Josselyn                                       -LeTrot photo A winner 19 times in 40 starts, Uza now has life earnings of 1,049,670€. 19/1 Verrazano Bridge (10g Offshore Dream) was second for Adrien Burger and third was 3.8/1 Swedishman (13g Gogo) handled by trainer Mme. Patricia Felber, this one a career winner of 1,337,280€.   Thomas H. Hicks

Today at Lyon la Soie was the third harnes racing leg of the prestigious Gr. II Grand National du Trot Paris-Turf (purse 85,000€, 3250 meters distance handicap), also the Quinte+ race of the day.   Victory went to the 1.4/1 favorite Colt des Essarts (7m Olitro-Navy Vaumicel) piloted by Francois Lagadeuc for breeder/owner Ecurie d’Essarts to his 16 th career win in 37 starts now for 316,290€ earned. Race time was 1.13.8kr.   Second was the 3.6/1 odds and 25 meter handicapped Ceylan Dairpet (7g Ouragon de Celland-Rosy MIP) with Tony LeBeller aboard. The 41/1 longshot Verika Dairpet (10f Kudo de Castelle) was third handled by Lean Boillereau.   The last pair in the exact order top five was 17/1 Blues des Landiers (8g Phlegyas), also a 25 meter handicapped horse, reined by Dominique Cheradame, and the fifth finishing 24/1 Criss Dairpet (7m Quaker Jet) piloted by Mickael Cormy.   Colt d’Essarts       -LeTrot photo   The Q+ exact order 2€ ticket paid 24,772.20€ to the 35 winning ticketholders and the Q+ pool was 3,677,812€.   The total of all wagering pools on the race, including the Q+, was 7,863,000€.   Tuesday at Vincennes was the Gr. III Prix Atlas (purse 70,000€, 2100 meters autostart) for three year old males. The 2.2/1 favorite Gamble River (3m Un Mec d’Heripre-Olga de la Grenne) scored for driver Francois Lagadeuc, trainer Sebastien Guarato, and owner/trainer Gerard Manzi.   Gamble River     -LeTrot photo   The winner recorded his fourth victory in nine starts now for 86,000€ in life earnings. Race time was 1.13.1kr.   A close second was 2.3/1 Gospel Pat (3m Uriel Speed-Namorosa) reined by Yoann Lebourgeois and trainer Philippe Allaire. 6.6/1 Galactic (3m Oh James) took the third check with Matthieu Abrivard the pilot.   Thomas H. Hicks

Groupe level events continued this afternoon at Paris-Vincennes. The Gr.II monte Prix Theophile Lallouet (purse 100,000€, 2700 meters) brought out a files of salty veterans and 3.1/1 Clegs des Champs (7f Legs du Clos-Prosperpine) scored easily timed in 1.12.2kr for jockey David Thomain, harness racing trainer Thierry Raffegeau and owner J-Y Roze. Clegs earned his 14 th career win in 27 starts to increase his life earnings to 577,080€. The 1.3/1 favorite Arlington Dream (9g Ready Cash) was second for Yoann Lebourgeois and trainer Philippe Allaire, after trailing the field early and sweeping to the front out of the final bend. 2.2/1 Boss du Meleuc (8g Lucky Blue) held third for Alexandre Abrivard. The Prix d’Aubusson (purse 56,000€, 2100 meters autostart) brought out a competitive field of 18 speedsters. The pace was fast in this 1.10.9kr journey (1.07.2kr at the 1500 remaining post; 1.08.2kr at the 1000 and 1.10.5kr with 500 meters to go) with the victory to the 2.2/1 favorite Nancy America (8f Revenue-Camargue) reined by Franck Nivard for owner Stall Laumas and trainer Philippe Billard, her fourth win in 14 starts in France and now with life earnings of 273,878€. Nancy America                -LeTrot photo Out of clouds fast finishing Jerry Mom (6m Ready Cash-Graziella) was second at 28/1 for Pierre Vercruysse, trainer Luc Roelens and owner JPB Building BVBA. This full brother to Traders bested 9/1 Ultra Wind Bi (6m Love You-Catch The Wind) with Gabrielle Gelormini up for trainer Alessandro Gocciadoro. 4/1 Calaska de Guez and 13/1 Beppe Am completed the top five. 4/1 Popeye Diamant, off a winning streak, finished 14 th . Four year old males contested today’s Prix Phaeton (Gr. II, 2175 meters, 100,000€ purse)and 3/10 favorite Face Time Bourbon (4m Ready Cash-Vita Bourbon) was just that, an impressive front-end winner timed in 1.11.0kr (fractions 1.10.6kr at the 1500; 1.11.6kr with 1000 meters remaining; 1.11.6kr at the 500). Face Time Bourbon              -LeTrot photo Eric Raffin teamed the Sebastien Guarato trainee for owner Scuderia Bivans Srl to his 12 th career victory in 14 starts, now for 532,150€ earned. He was bred by SARL Haras Saint Martin. The 12/1 outsider Fakir du Lorault (4m Vaillant Cash) was second for Francois Lecanu and trainer Mickael Charuel. Third was 14/1 Feliciano (4m Ready Cash) handled by Yoann Lebourgeois for trainer Philippe Allaire. 11/1 Fun Quick (4m Carpe Diem) was fourth. Face Time is a fine colt, the likely heir to Bold Eagle and Ready Cash as the king of the trotteurs in France Four year old mares battled in the Gr. II Prix Paul Leguerney (purse 100,000€, 2175 meters) with the 1.11.1kr timed victory to 5.2/1 Freyja du Pont (4f Quinoa du Gers-Parade du Pont) with trainer Jean Michel Bazire aboard for Ecurie Albert Rayon. Freyja du Pont               -LeTrot photo The Celine Bazire bred mare posted her eighth career win in 14 outings now for 154,650€ earned. 12.8/1 Fend la Bise (4f Prince Gede-Una Prima Speed) was second for trainer/driver Franck Anne, ahead of 6.2/1 Fame And Fortune (4f Sam Bourbon-Ma Crown) reined by owner/trainer Franck Nivard. 5/1 Fleche Bourbon (4f Saxo de Vandel-Uzara Josselyn) took foruth for J.Ph. Monclin and fifth was the pacesetter, 50.7/1 Ferreteria (4f Goetmals Wood-Avenue Victoria), reined by Franck Ouvrie for trainer Yves Boireau and owner J-P Dubois.   Thomas H. Hicks

The 30/1 outsider Cristal River (7m Quaker Jet-Olga de la Greane) took the Friday evening Quinte+ Prix Gratia (purse 48,000€, 2700 meters) at Paris-Vincennes.   Francois Legadeuc teamed the Sebastien Guarato harness racing trainee that is owned by breeder Gerard Manzi. He scored for only the fourth time in 58 career starts but now has 218,630€ earned.   Race timed was 1.14.1kr. 13/1 Coumba Kuky (7f Matador de Vrie) took second for trainer/driver Gabriel Angel Pou Pou and 9/1 Dimmosia (6f Phlegyas) was third for trainer Loris Garcia and pilot Matthieu Abrivard. 12/1 Baron du Gouthier and 3/2 favorite Calou Renardierre completed he exact order top five finishers and set off a 54,137.60€ payoff for the eight winning 2€ Q+ tickets.   6th April   The Q+ pool was 4,332,038€ and the total pools of all bets on this race exceeded 8,656,000€. The 14/1 outsider Coach Franbleu (7g Prince d’Espace-Olydra) was fast off the start for Yoann Lebourgeois, opened a 15 length advantage and gamely held off late challengers to win the 75,000€ purse Prix du Treport raced over 2700 meters.   Coach Franbleu         - LeTrot photo   The winner, owned and trained by Franck Leblanc, now has 12 career wins in 53 outings for 495,870€ earned. Race time was 1.12.2kr.   The 7/10 favorite Looking Superb (6m Orlando Vici)rallied late along the pegs for trainer/driver Jean Michel Bazire to be second and third was 4.9/1 Tessy d’Ete (7f Ganymede) with Franck Nivard up. 60/1 Detroit Castelets and 22/1 Cantin de l’éclair completed the exact order top five and the Quinte+ payoff was 13,153.80€ for the 36 winning ticketholders.   The Q+ pool this day was 4,564,058€ and the total of all wagering pools on the race was 9,547,000€.   Earlier the Prix de Saintes (Gr.III, purse 70,000€, 2100 meters autostart, three year old fillies) went to 1.1/1 favorite Galilea Money (3f Bold Eagle-Uturn Money) reined by trainer Jean Michel Bazire for breeder/owner Yvan Bernard.   Galilea Money   - LeTrot photo   Race time was 1.14.8kr. The winner recorded her fourth career win in seven appearances, now for 87,960€ earned.   She was impressive with this last to first surge. 4.3/1 Gaia Olmendorf (3f Ready Cash) was a game second for Christophe Martens and breeder/owner Ecurie Olmendorf. 4/1 Gemme deBussett (3f Brillantissime) held third for pilot David Thomain   Thomas H. Hicks  

Aubrion du Gers (9g Memphis du Rib-J’Arrive du Gers) rallied from a blocked position on the pegs early in the lane to score by half-length in the Gr. III Prix Angers Loire Metropole (purse 55,000€, 3100 meters distance handicap, 18 starters) at Hippodrome Angers.   Trainer/owner Jean Michel Bazire teamed the 1.12.8kr timed winner to his 43 rd career harness racing victory in 67 starts, now for 2,222,947€ earned.   He overcame a 50 meter handicap and got into striking position early before yielding to Bugsy Malone (8g Ready Cash-Night Captain) and getting blocked.   Marie Brigitte Anty bred the great champion that is accepted in the 2019 Elitloppet and today was the 2/5 favorite. The 50 meter handicapped Bugsy Malone, off at 5.4/1 odds, raced gamely to be second for owner/trainer Philippe Allaire and driver Yoann Lebourgeois. 17/1 Beau de Grimoult (8g Pacifique Gede) took third for trainer/driver Franck Anne after a 25 meter penalty.   7.1/1 Archibald (9g Meaulnes du Corta) was fourth for Thomas Levesque and fifth went to 25 meter handicapped 33/1 outsider Blues des Landiers (8g Phlegyas) for breeder/owner/trainer/driver Dominique Cheradame.   Well-regarded Super Fe was eighth and Django Riff was ninth.   Replay http://www.pmu.fr/turf/live-et-replay/?num-reunion=1&num-course=1&date-fr=03042019   There was other interesting action this week in Europe. Tuesday at Paris-Vincennes Go Along (3f Ready Cash-Oxano de Chanterne) scored in the Prix Enif (47,000€ purse, 2700 meters, 10 starters) at 1.2/1 odds.   Go Along     ---LeTrot photo   The Philippe Allaire owned and trained filly was timed in 1.16.4kr with Yoann Lebourgeois aboard.   On Monday at Argentan three year olds contested the Prix Vesta (purse 21,000€ 2150 meters autostart, 12 starters) and 4/1 Guerande (3f Quaker Jet-Symphonie) scored for Yann Lorin, also the trainer for owner J.M. Lorin. 3.9/1 Gourgandine (3f Bold Eagle-Udine) was second for breeder/owner/driver Jean Pierre Dubois, ahead of the 1.7/1 favorite Genialissime (3g Brillantissime)reined by Tony LeBeller.   Later in that program was the Prix Phebus (pure 27,000€, 2875 meters, 18 starters) that saw 6.1/1 Cadet Joyeux (7g Love You-Cadette) score timed in 1.14.6kr for David Thomain. Second was 10/1 Crazy Dream (7f Repeat Love-Daisy Chain) for trainer/driver Yves Boireau.   Cadet Joyeux            --PMU/LeTrot photo   This J.P. Dubois bred campaigner rallied from far back in the final bend.   Thomas H. Hicks

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Today’s Gran Premio Italia (purse 40,040€, 1660m autostart) at Bologna went to the impressive Ayrton Treb (3m Majestic Son-Letter Bomb Treb-Enjoy Lavec) with Andrea Farolfi aboard and timed in 1.12.5kr.   He defeated All Wise As (3f Varenne-Temple Blue Chip-Cantab Hall) with trainer Erick Bondo at the lines.   Third was Al Capone Stecca (3m Napoleon Bar-Ombretta Bar-Ganymede) with trainer Alessandro Gocciadoro driving.   Other news during the week was the move of stallions. Algiers Hall has moved to Spain, Crazed to Finland and Flocki d’Urzy to Sweden, this one a young son of Ready Cash. Further it was announced that Ringostarr Treb will start in the April 27 th Olympiatravet at Aby and if he does well it could set up his defense of the Elitloppet trophy.   Algiers Hall in Spain Thomas H. Hicks  

Friday night harness racing returned to Paris-Vincennes headlined by the e-Quinte+ Prix Amalthea (purse 56,000€, 2100 meters, 16 European starters).   The 1.6/1 favorite Angle Of Attack (7g Scarlet Knight-Magyane Turgot) scored impressively timed in 1.12.5kr with Gabriele Gelormini up.   Robert Bergh trains the now career winner of 235,588€ for Roland Wiksten.   18/1 Balzac de l’Iton (8g Panache de L’Iton) took second for reinsman Romain Derieux and 29/1 Brasil de Baily (8g Baccarat du Pont) was third for Mathieu Mottier.   43/1 Montdore (9m Love You) for Pierre Vercruysse and trainer Bergh was fourth ahead of 5.9/1 Christo (7g Rieussec) with Michel Lenoir the trainer/driver. The e-Quinte+ payoff was 26,983.60€.   The card’s Prix Aemilia (purse 45,000€, 2100 meters autostart, 13 starters) was among several good undercard contests. 1.8/1 Empire City (5m O’Donnell-Octopus) scored timed in 1.13.2kr with breeder/owner/trainer Nicolas Roussel at the lines.   The now winner of 101,440€ defeated Ejag (5g Jag de Bellouet) handled by Pierre Vercruysse and 98/1 Esquire (5m Qwerty) with breeder/owner/trainer Adrien Lamy aboard.   Empire City                -LeTrot photo   Four year olds followed to contest the Prix Adrastea (purse 35,000€, 2850 meters, 12 starters) with undefeated, now in four starts, 1.6/1 favorite Ferry Jet (4m Uriel Speed-Ulla Jet-Love You) winning timed in 1.13.3kr.   Luc Roelens trains the Yannick Desmet owned colt that Pierre Vercruysse teamed. Jean Etienne Dubois was the breeder of this 46,800€ winner. 8.3/1 Flyer du Noyer (4g Roc Meslois) took second for Benoit Robin and 22/1 Fresh Bidder (4g Quaker Jet) was third for Eric Raffin.   Thomas H. Hicks

Saturday’s Prix du Haras d’Haufor at Laval saw a good field battle over 2875 meters (distance handicap) for a purse of 33,000€.   Victory was earned by 1.14.3kr timed Boyokos Atout (8g Goetmals Wood-New York Jet) reined by trainer Franck Nivard to his 14 th career win now for life earnings of 207,700€. Fast closing second went to 25 meter handicapped Drole de Jet (6m Coktail Jet-Likely Jet) with Pierre Vercruysse the trainer/driver for Ecurie d’As. He was clocked in 1.13.7kr.   Third went to 25 meter penalized Elite du Ruel (5f Timoko-Romance du Ruel) with Franck Anne up for breeder/owner Annick Bezin. Delloro Vedaquais (6g Ready Cash-Spandelle), also 25 meter handicapped, was fourth the J.Ph. Monclin teaming for owner/trainer Philippe Allaire.   At Kincsem Park (Budapest) their Saturday featured Akkuratos DIJ (purse 600,000Huf, 1960 meters distance handicap) went to the 1.3/1 favorite Zeal di Girafalco (4m Igor Font-Inviata d’Italia-Varenne) with Veljko Mazsity the trainer/driver.   This was his first 2019 start and ninth career win in Hungary in 11 starts. The breeder was Russia based Elleca Society Agr. Finishing second was 27.9/1 and 20 meter handicapped Milady Amok (6f Scarlet Knight-Balett Amok-Defi d’Aunou with third to 13/1 Ujrazi! (6m Maximus Lindy-Gyarsukj!-Witsends Speedy.   Zeal di Girifalco                                 -Kincsem Park   Earlier on the program the 1.3/1 favorite Alfa Boy (3m Racino-Chippychip GT) won the Fenyves DIJ clocked in 1.18.9kr. Trainer Csaba Lakatos was the reinsman. Two interesting trotters race in a qualifying event before the main card with victory to 1.19.4kr timed Underpaid Hanover (10m Revenue-Up Front Lisa-Lindy Lane) and Csaba Lakatos over Arum Ville (3g Calypso Capar-Izaville-Endless Sands) with trainer Imre Fazekas aboard.   Arum Ville was a good two year old and is owned by NFL Oakland Raiders fans under the banner Silver and Black Racing.   Top quality racing also took place Saturday in the V75 card at Boden (SWE).   The headliner was the C.Th. Ericcsons Memorial (400,000SEK to the winner, 2140 meters autostart), a Gr. I event leading to the Olympiatravet.   This race went to 1.11.6kr timed and 3.5/1 odds Milligan’s School (6m Yankee Glide-Tori Ann-SJs Photo) reined by Ulf Eriksson for trainer/owner Stefan Melander. The winner was bred in the USA by Richard and Joyce McClelland of Ohio, and he recorded victory number 15 in 68 starts now for 8,676,994SEK earned. 6/1 Handsome Brad (6m Brad de Veleuve) was second for pilot Carl Johan Jepson, ahead of 25/1 Speedy Foxy Vicane (10f Chouchou des Dames) handed by Kim Eriksson.   The Solvalla undercard had five raced with 300,000SEK first money and another five for 250,000SEK first prize.   The winners of these included the following: V75 Silver 300,000SEK – Velvet Gio (5g Nad Al Sheba) 1.11.6kr over 2140 meters autostart Margaretas three year old males 300,000SEK – Fort Knox (3m Muscle Hill) 1.14.6kr over 2140m autostart Margaretas three year old fillies 300,000SEK – Zolly (3f Zola Boko) – 1.14.9kr over 2140m autostart Margaretas four year old females 300,000SEK – Racing Brooda (4f Prodigious) – 1.14.7kr over 2140m autostart Margaretas four year old males 300,000SEK – Night Brodde (4m Up And Quick) – 1.14kr over 2140m autostart Mares Elite 250,000SEK – Double Exposure (6f Donato Hanover) – 1.12.4kr over 1640m autostart Klass II Final 250,000SEK – Magic Cash (4g Ready Cash) – 1.12.4kr over 2140m autostart STL Bronze 250,000SEK – Perfect Dynamite (6g So Perfect) – 1.12.5kr over 2140m autostart Diamantstoet Final 250,000SEK – Odessa Celeber (5f Cantab Hall) – 1.13.8kr over 2140m voltstart (plus 20m handicap) Klass I Final 250,000SEK – Vlad Del Ronco (5m Iulius del Ronco) – 1.12.9kr over 2140m autostart   Thomas H. Hicks

Bulle de Laumont (8f Hand du Vivier-Ozo des Laumont) rallied to win today’s Grand National du Trot Paris-Turf second leg, held at Marseille Borely. The Gr. III harness racing contest was raced over 3,000 meters distance handicap by 16 starters. The 9/1 odds winner was piloted by Stephane Cingland, also his trainer, as Bulle won for the 19 th time in a 53 race career, now for 345,080€ in life earnings. Joseine Pigace bred the winner that overcame a 25 meter handicap to defeat 22/1 Bachor (8m Prodigious-Princesse Victoire) reined by trainer Emmanuel Allard. 70/1 Allegro Nonantais (9g Otello Pierji) was third, ahead of 14/1 Viking d’Hermes, handicapped 25 meters, and 17/1 Cross Dairpet to round out the top five. This race was the Quinte+ race of the day and the exact order payoff was 359,378€ to the one holder of a winning 2€ ticket. The Q+ pool this day was 3,404,149€ and total of all wagering pools on the Q+ race was 7,051,000€.   Thomas H. Hicks  

Today’s Enghien harness racing feature was the Prix du Pont d’Iena (purse 63,000€, 2875 meters, 12 European starters). Italy’s Victory Ferm (5m Nad Al Sheba-Gavina di Casei) scored at 3.2/1 odds for driver Andrea Guzzinati, trainer Mauro Baroncini and owner M.A. Passoni.   Victor Ferm recorded his second win in nine starts in France and now has career earnings of 182,788€. 8.7/1 odds Broadwell (5m Conway Hall- Boria) took second with Gabriele Gelormini up for trainer Erwin Bot and owner Ecurie Gerrits Recycling BV. 1.6/1 favorite Alcoy (5m Ready Cash-Divann) took third for pilot Christophe Martens, trainer Victor Martens and Ceke Farm BVBA of Belgium.   At Caen a group of lightly raced three year olds contested the Prix de Ianville (purse 18,000€, 2200 meters autostart, 12 starters). The 9/10 favorite Gold Eagle (3m Bold Eagle-No Limit Jet) scored timed in 1.15.5kr with Eric Raffin aboard. The winner is unbeaten in two outings for trainer Sebastien Guarato, owner Pierre Pilarski and was bred by Serge Bernereau.   Gold Eagle    - LeTrot photo   The 2.1/1 odds Gitano (3m Tucson-Que d’Ojeille) was second for trainer/driver Thierry Duvaldestin that had won his only previous start. Third was 11/1 Give Me Five (3g Brillantissime-A New Bill) that Anthony Barrier teamed for breeder/owner/trainer Philippe Allaire, in his first career start.   Tomorrow the trots moves to Marseille Borely and that venue hosts the Grand National du Trot Paris- Turf (Gr. III, purse 85,000€, 3000 meters distance handicap). This is the GNT second leg.   Thomas H. Hicks  

Pantera del Pino (10f Turbo Sund-Desire’ del Pino-Sugarcane Hanover) too Sunday’s featured Gran Premio Giorgio Jeghar (purse 40,040€, 1660 meters autostart) at Trieste timed in 1.13.4kr and reined by Rene Legati.   The veteran harness racing mare has 32 wins in 176 starts for 213,372€ in career earnings. Peace Of Mind (10f Uronometro-Erica d’Alfa-Sugarcane Hanover) was a game second with Alessandro Gocciadoro the pilot. Venanzo Jet (5m Gruccione Jet-Liza-Indro Park) was third ahead of Very Joy (5m Napoleon Bar- Nieves Joy-Naglo).     Upcoming on March 31 at Bologna is the Gr. III G.P. Italia that features a goof field of three year olds (shown below):     Some of these most recently battled at Firenze on March 17 th in the Pr. Etroria Mem Ran d’Stefano (purse 40,040€, 1600 meters autostart). In that contest pacesetter Ayrton Treb (3m Majestic Son-Letter Bomb Treb-Enjoy Lavec) scored timed in 1.13.8kr for teamster Andrea Farolfi.   He will start in the GP Italia along with second finishing Aida Francis (3f Zola Boko-Raya Bi-Self Possessed) and third placed A Sexygirl Par (3f Varenne-Fight For Lux-Toss Out). Aladin Effe (3m Maharajah-Imperfection Effe-Varenne) was fourth. This pack was within a length at the line.     Thomas H. Hicks  

March 23, 2019 - Today Vincennes, the Prix Jean Cabrol (purse 64,000€, 2700 meters, 12 European starters), although not a groupe level race, brought out some top-level harness racing stars. Victory went to the 2.7/1 second choice Chica de Joudes (7f Jag de Bellouet-Queschua Love) with owner/trainer Alain Laurent at the lines.  The winner recorded his 11th career victory in 38 starts now for 423,920€ earned. Race time was 1.12.7kr off slow fractions (the leader was at the 1000 meters to go post in 1.14.2kr). 75/1 Cicero Noa (7g Mandarino Blue-Ma Belle Reine) rallied to get second for Christophe Martens and breeder/owner/trainer Jan Vanhoucke. He nipped the 3/5 favorite Looking Superb (6m Orlando Vici-Classical Pine) by a nose for second, this one driven by Alexandre Abrivard for trainer J-M Bazire and in the death around the final bend and into the lane. He could not close on the winner. Looking Superb was second in the Prix d’Amerique after winning the Prix Tenor de Baune to earn an Amerique starting spot. Fourth today was 15/1 Titty Jepson (7f Varenne-Lama di Costa) with Matthieu Abrivard aboard. The J-M Bazire teamed Dreambreaker was 10th and off at 20/1 odds. Chica de Joudes The Prix Robert Auvray (Gr. II, purse 100,000€, 2850 meters, 12 starters) brought out top flight five year olds and 6.1/1 Excellent (5m Real de Lou-Udine d’Odyssee) scored timed in 1.12.5kr for Alexandre Abrivard. L.Cl. Abrivard bred, trains and owns the winner that now has six career wins in 28 appearances for 232,860€ earned. The 3/2 favorite Enino du Pommereux (5m Coktail Jet-Noune du Pommereux) was second, handled by Matthieu Abrivard for trainer Sylvain Roger and owner Noel Lolic. 41/1 outsider Extra Light (5f Village Mystic) was third for J.Ph. Monclin and trainer Stephane Meunier. 4.7/1 Eridan (5m Ready Cash) was fourth for David Thomain and trainer Sebastien Guarato and fifth was 12/1 Eclipse Danica (5f Hasting) driven by Bryan Coppens for trainer Pierre Vercruysse. Excellent The Prix de Gueugnon (purse 56,000€, 2700 meters, 11 European starters) showcased the return to France of today’s 2/1 favorite City Guide (4m Love You-Crys Dream) handled by Robin Bakker. Erwin Bot trains the winner for Gerrits Recycling BVBA. City Guide has won now five straight in 2019 and today was his third win in France in seven starts. His career earnings reached 92,430€. Race time was 1.14.9kr off slow fractions (1.17.8kr at the 1500 to go mark; 1.17.3kr at the 1000 and 1.16.1kr with 500 meters remaining) as City Guide that ground his way to the front past the grandstand, was well rated on the front by Bakker and powered away in the lane. City Guide was impressive and has improved significantly in recent months. Zakk Wise (4m Equinox Bi-Sorority Wise) took second for Gabriele Gelormini and trainer Alessandro Gocciadoro. 6.8/1 Falco d’Heripre (4m Goetmals Wood) was third ahead of 37/1 Great Gatsby As (4m Abano As) that Bot also trains, this one owned by L.G. Gerrits. City Guide   Daida de Vandel Wins Gr. II Prix Louis Forcinal at Vincennes; Cleangame Wins Again Groupe level action returned to Vincennes this day beginning with the Prix Louis Forcinal (Gr. II monte, 100,000€ purse, 2700 meters, nine starters). Victory went to 9/1 Daida de Vandel (6f Real de Lou-Gallia de Vandel) impressively, with Alexandre Abrivard in the irons for trainer L.Cl. Abrivard and owner Charles Germain. She won for the eighth time in 35 career starts now for 307,880€ earned. Race time was 1.13.3kr as speed increased throughout the race (1.15.9at 1500 meters remaining; 1.15kr at the 1000; 1.14kr with 500 meters to go). The 2/5 favorite Dexter Fromentro (6m Qwerty-Princesse d’Ombree) held second in a photo with Camille Levesque up for trainer Thomas and owner Pierre Levesque. Third was 4.3/1 Evangelina Blue (5f Speedy Blue-Happy Blue) with Mathieu Mottier the jockey for trainer/owner J.Ph. Mary. Daida de Vandel The Quinte+ Prix du Bos de Vincennes (Gr. III, 90,000€, 2850 meters, 13 starters) saw the J-M Bazire entry (two of the three) at the line together timed in 1.12.1kr. The 2/5 favorite Cleangame (7g Ouragon de Celland-Red Bell) was up in the final stride, after making a three wide move from sixth in the final turn, for trainer/driver Jean Michel Bazire and owner Ecurie J-M Rancoule for his 23rd victory in 37 career starts, now for 757,970€ in life earnings. 8.8/1 Ble du Gers (8g Quinoa du Gers-Moore) was a game second after making the pace with Alexandre Abrivard up for trainer Bazire and owner Rancoule. 22/1 Anzi des Liards (9g Look de Star-Nausccaa du Sud) took third for Romain Derieux and trainer David Bekaert. 11/1 Tessy d’Ete and 21/1 Bel Avis completed the top five finishers, the latter also a Bazire trainee that Nicolas Bazire teamed for New Blue 1 LLC of the USA. There were 3087 winning Q+ exact order tickets that paid 423.60€ for the 2€ wager. The Q+ pool was 4,621,691€nd the total of the race pools (all wagers including Q+) was 9,158,000€. Cleangame (outside)   Costa Haufor Wins Q+ Prix Maia at Vincennes Costa Haufor (7f Saphir d’Haufor-Santa Haufor) took Friday evening’s Paris-Vincennes featured Quinte+ Prix Maia (purse 48,000€, 2850 meters distance handicap) at 9/2 odds, with Charles J. Bigeon driving. This Christian Bigeon bred and owned trainee scored his eighth victory in 35 career starts now for 226,990€ earned. Race time was 1.12.9kr as the winner overcame a 25 meter handicap. 9/1 Bambrina Fortuna (8f Buvetier d’Aunou-Jina Fortuna) was second for J-M Bazire and owner/trainer Pierre Alain Rynwalt-Boulard. Third went to 25 meter penalized and 4.6/1 Comtesse du Clos with Yoann Lebourgeois aboard. Croisette and Carina du Porhoet completed the WQ+ exact order top five that paid 32,017€ to the 18 winning ticketholders. The Q+ pool this day was 3,710,412€ and the total of all Q+ race pools was 7,287,000€. Costa Haufor Today the ATG V75 action was in Norway at Momarken where the V75 Gold (200,000SEK to the winner, 1640 meters autostart, 10 starters) went to 20.6/1 Cokstile (6m Quite Easy-Joystile-Coktail Jet) reined by Lars Anvar Kolle for trainer Jan Kristian Waaler, timed in 1.11kr. The 6.4/1 Donatomite (7g Donato Hanover-Malvictorian-Malabar Man) was second for Frode Hamre and third was 44.7/1 The Last Ticket (8m Thai Tanic). Pastor Bob and Lionel finished fourth and fifth. Thomas H. Hicks

March 21, 2019 - The 1.3/1 favorite DC (5f Great Challenger-Quite A Beauty) took Thursday’s Grand Prix d’Ardeuil AOC Buzet (purse 32,000€, 2625 meters, 15 European starters) at Agen la Garenne. This race was the day’s Quinte+ event and the 1.13.9kr timed victory by CD, reined by Nicolas Bazire for owner/trainer J-M Bazire, was his first in France and increased his life earnings to 113,097€. 6.1/1 Massive Attach (6m Pine Chip-Ibis SE) was second for trainer/driver Olivier Raffin. Ahead of third finishing 15/1 Dauphin du Lot (6g Laetenter Diem) with trainer B. Muel aboard. 9.1/1 Ulberto (8m Broadway Hall-Depuis Blue) and 50.8/1 Damour Jiel (6m Rombaldi) comoleted the top five, setting up a 8,143.20€ payoff for a 2€ ticket. There were 94 winning tickets and the Q+ pool reached 3,120.578€. The total of all pool of this Q+ race was 6,354,000€. CD On the same card was the Grand Prix Dynavena Maisagri (purse 38,000, 2625 meters, 12 European starters) with the 1.13.3kr timed victory earned by 3.3/1 Cap de Narmont (7m Islero de Bellouet-Sissi de Narmont) with Denis Brossard driving, to his 13th career win in 58 appearances. 52.5/1 Casting de Chenu  for Pierre Pellerot and 69.9/1 Byron du Klau with Olivier Raffin up, completed the top three finishers. Cap de Narmont Say Wolvega this day their featured event was the 10,000€ purse Championnat d’Hivier Finale. Raced over 2600 meters autostart by nine starters, the victory went to 16.6/1 Dream Gibus (6g Love You-Qualite Gibus) reined by trainer Mme. Anne Lahmann for owner Drafsport Lehmann. The 2.2/1 second favorite Ditto Quick (6g Cezio Josselyn) was second for owner/driver Sven Hoste and third was 8.3/1 Dillinger Gentil (6g Kiwi) for Micha Brower.  The race favorite, 3/5 odds Brio de Janeiro, was a dq. Dream Gibus Thomas H. Hicks

Aero King (9g Hooper) took Tuesday’s Enghien featured Prix Bernard Simonard (monte, apprentice jockeys, 58,000€ purse, 2875 meters, 11 starters) clocked in 1.13kr and ridden by Maxime Tijou.   Off at 4.4/1 odds, Aero King won for the 10th time in 85 starts, now for 437,270€ earned. Mme. Virginie Moquet trains the winner. 3.6/1 Delcieux de Cebe (6g Gazouillis) was second with Mlle.   Oceane Briand aboard for trainer Franck Leblanc, and 2.8/1 Carla du Chatelet with third with Maxime Gilbert in the irons for trainer Sebastien Guarato.   On the same card lightly raced three year olds contested the Prix du Pont Saint-Michel (purse 41,000€, 2875 meters, eight starters) with victory to the 9/10 favorite Great Zeus (3f Niky-Tine de Villeneuve) handled by Eric Raffin.   Gregory Thorel trains the 1/19kr clocked winner that scored for the second time in three career starts. 7/1 Gaston du Roc (3m Quirky Jet) was close second for Patrice Toutain and 4/1 Great Father (3m Opus Viervil) rallied for third with Nicolas Roussel up.   Great Zeus                   - LeTrot photo   At Mons Ghlin this day was the featured Prix Shanghai (7,200€ purse, 2300 meters autostart, nine International starters). 17.2/1 outsider Ultimate du Rib (11g Dahir de Prelong-Kara Pelois) scored timed in 1.14.9kr, his 16 th career victory in 128 starts now for 551,352€ earned.   Gert Sucaet teamed the trainee of Christophe De Groote. 4.1/1 Truman Dairpet (12g Biesolo-Heloise Poterie) took second for Piet Van Pollaert and third was the 5/10 favorite Goofy Greenwood (6g Russel November-Chatooga River) with trainer H.W. Langeweg Jr. at the lines. Ustang Ludois, Buzz Mearas and Banker Transs R followed the top three home in this good field.   Ultimate du Rib       -LeTrot photo   Later in that card the Prix Melbourne (6,000€, 2300 meters autostart, eight starters) saw 2.7/1 Elencio (5m Love You-Olencia) score, timed in 1.14.8kr for pilot Joseph Verbeeck and breeder/owner/trainer Alphons Vanberghen.   Racing also was held this day at Hyeres with the feature race being the Prix du Restaurant “le Porquerollais” (purse 37,000€, 2850 meters distance handicap).   12.2/1 odds Avocat des Loyeau (9g Meaulnes du Corta) was victorious for owner/trainer/driver Laurent Freneau timed in 1.14.6kr.   This winner recorded his 12 th career win now for 182,890€ earned. 40.2/1 Venezia de Mai was second for Anthony Laignon, overcoming a 25 meter handicap, and 10.4/1 Bichon del Green was third.   The 1.9/1 Colonel Bond was fourth, he too 25 meter handicapped, as was 1.8/1 Auch that finished sixth.   Avocat des Loyaux   Note that the great French gelding Aubrion du Gers has received and accepted an invitation to the 2019 Elitloppet. Trainer Jean Michel Bazire announced the acceptance and that he is a double winner of the event. It is not known whether Bazire will travel to Sweden to drive his champion that has been driven by another double Elitloppet winner Joseph Verbeeck in other ventures outside of France. Readly Express, Propulsion and Dijon were previously invited to the 2019 Elitloppet.     It was also rumored that Bjorn Goop could drive Bold Eagle in his anticipated race at Enghien in the Prix l’Atlantique, that is scheduled for April 20.   This is Enghien’s only Gr. I event and it carries a purse of 170,000€ (2150 meters autostart is the distance).   Bold Eagle won the 2017-2018 editions of the race that has historically drawn the best trotteurs then racing in Europe. Winners since 2004 are shown below.         Thomas H. Hicks

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