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David Thomain piloted Une Fille d'Amour to a 17/1 longshot victory in today's Gr. III Prix du Plateau de Gravelle at Paris-Vincennes. The six year-old daughter of Infant du Bossis scored in a quick 1.11.2kr for owner/trainer Cyril Raimbaud in this 110,000e international contest over 2100 meters autostart. Pacesetter Triode de Felliere held the lead until late stretch when the winner and Sweden's On Track Piraten rallied, the latter that had defeated Maharajah in a prep leading to his Prix d'Amerique victory. February 20, 2014 Paris-Vincennes, Prix du Plateau de Gravelle, 110,000e Gr. III International, 2100 meters autostart, 16 starters 1.11.2kr 1st Une Fille d'Amour (6f Infant du Bossis-Never So Great-Ever Jet) David Thomain up for Cyril Raimbaud trainer/owner, 17.4/1, 10th career win for earnings of 558,940e 2nd On Track Piraten (6g Kool du Caux-Manrovia-Rite On Love) Erik Adielsson up for Hans R. Stromberg trainer, 5.3/1 (Sweden) 3rd Triode de Felliere (7f Derby du Gite-Linea de Vandel-Cezio Josselyn) Anthony Barrier driving for trainer/owner Jean-Paul Marmion, 1.4/1 In other action, the well-regarded Italian invader Oneghin Del Ronco took the 90,000e European Prix du Cantal over the 2850 meter distance. J-M Bazire teamed the winner, a six year-old son of Love You, for trainer Vincenzo Tufano. He won for the 20th time in his career, now with earnings for 187.812e. Fellow Italian trotter No Man's Land took second for trainer/driver Pietro Gubellini over the Love You gelding Ultra Daidou with Tony LeBeller driving. February 20, 2014 Paris-Vincennes, Prix du Cantal, 90,000€ European, 2850 meters, 13 starters  1.15.8kr 1st Oneghin Del Ronco (6m Love You-Talia Del Ronco-Park Avenue Joe) J-M Bazire up for trainer Vincenzo Tufano and owner Vincenzo Collola, 2.1/1, winners' 20th career win (Italy) 2nd No Man's Land (7f Coktail Jet-AJs Baby Doll-Donerail) Pietro Gubellini trainer/driver for Scuderia Gardesano, breeder J-Et. Dubois, 7.6/1 (Italy) 3rd Ultra Daidou )6g Love You-Djakarta-Workaholic) Tony LeBeller trainer/driver, 13.6/1, breeder/owner Ecurie Daidou The cold-blood trotters visited Paris-Vincennes and contested the 20,000e Prix des Trotters "Sang-Froid". Doctor Jaros was victorious at 11/1 for Geir Gudmerstad in a close photo over disqualified Narby Kalabalik that Eric Raffin handled for Jan-Olav Persson who trained legendary Jarvsofaks. Persson himself earned second today with Juni Kongren. The cold bloods will be back in action Sunday. February 20, 2014 Prix des Trotteurs "Sang-Froid", International, 20,000e, 2100 meters autostart, 12 starters 1.24.7kr 1st Doctor Jaros (7m Mortvedt Jerkeld-Faks Perla-Jarvsofaks) Geir Gudmerstad driver/trainer, 11/1 (Norway) 2nd Juni Kongren (6m Lome Kongen-Majtindra-Slogum Brage) Jan-Olav Persson driver/trainer, 8/1 (Sweden) 3rd Norheim Jaerz (6m Jarvsofaks-Norheim Elle-Elding) T-E Solberg up for G. Svedrup, 2.5/1 (Norway) by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink.com  

Such trotting luminaries as Scarlet Knight and Commander Crowe have won the Gavle Stora Pris in past years, and even the likes of Prix d’Amerique winner Maharajah has  graced this field with his presence as recently as last year. But the cream of the Swedish elite have been plundering France over the past couple of months with the Lutfi Kolgjini-trained colt Olympic Kronos the latest to stick his hoof in the French cookie jar,  while On Track Piraten was second in the Prix de Plauteau de Gravelle on Thursday. Maharajah and Noras Bean won the two group one classics the Grand Prix d’Amerique and  Prix de France respectively while the likes of the Swedish trained Sanity, Global Manhattan and the ex-pat Beckman all winning big races in France this Winter Meeting. Back home Amaru Boko has looked to be finally fulfilling the potential he showed when winning the Group one E3 final over the likes of Duexieme Picsous, Kadett C.D. and Raja Mirchi in 2010. Then trained by Timo Nurmos, the stallion son of superstar French sire Coktail Jet   was third to Orecchietti and Wishing Stone in the Group one Sprintermasteren Final in 2011 and he has won at Gold Division level in the V75, including a win over Beanie M.M. in the Ego Boys Minne in August 2012. He followed that up with his biggest cheque as an open class horse a few weeks later when second to Sebastian K in the group one Sundsvall Open, a UET Masters Series race but his career stalled the next season with just one small win in 2013. But he returned after a four month break in 2014 in Robert Bergh’s stable and has looked a different horse, racking up three impressive wins in a row. Bergh seems to have found the key to the stallion and although he is attempting the three kilometre trip for the first time, should have the breeding to add the storied distance race to his CV. Montgomery Gel has won four of his last six races but has not won over this distance before, with a second and a third his best efforts  in seven attempts at the 3km staying race. Timo Nurmos usually has Jorma Kontio on board the son of jag de Bellouet but  has engaged top Swedish drive Bjorn Goop. The Swedish champ has driven the gelding nine times previously but the last time was in May last year and he has only won once, on his second drive on the horse in September 2009. Francais du Gull, another son of Jag de Bellouet, was third in this race last year and has the credentials to really test this field while Svante Bath’s Labero Broline (Pine Chip)and Ake Lindblom’s Winning Love (Love You) are also getting support in early markets.. GÄVLE STORA PRIS Gävle 2014-02-22   3140m 33,642 euros 1  Francais du Gull (h   Jag de Bellouet - Tantiem Gull) Dr:   Erik Lindegren   Tr: Erik Lindegren              2 Trustworthy Ås (g   Dream Vacation - Keep the Word) Dr:   Henrik Svensson  Tr:  Henrik Svensson    3 My Golden (m   Adams Hall - Lady Wall Star) Dr:   Kajsa Frick   Tr: Leif Witasp            4 Tidied Accelerator (g   Yankee Glide - Cookout) Dr:   Örjan Kihlström   Tr: Stefan Melander             5  Labero Broline (h   Pine Chip - Armbro Natural) Dr:   Erik Adielsson   Tr: Svante Båth             6  Yanantin Boko ( v   Viking Kronos - Ormonne Boko) Dr:   Olle Alsén   Tr: Olle Alsén    7  Winnng Love (h   Love You - Falin Amber Dance) Dr:   Åke Lindblom   Tr: Åke Lindblom               8   Amaru Boko (h   Coktail Jet - Sue Boko) Dr:   Robert Bergh   Tr: Robert Bergh              9    Kaka (h   November - Elegance Real) Dr:   Torbjörn Jansson  Tr:  Stig H Johansson            10  Lord Capar (h   Varenne - Foxy'n Rowdy) Dr:   Thomas Dalborg   Tr: Mats Karlsson          11 Clear Sign (g   Smok'n Lantern - Atas Nice Sun L) Dr:.   Ulf Ohlsson   Tr: Henrik Svensson              12 Montgomery Gel (h   Jag de Bellouet - Com Nina) Dr:   Björn Goop   Tr: Timo Nurmos     Dave Sanders

We struck four of the seven in the V75 with Reckless, Dreams Take Time, Finish Future, Twitter ticking the box. But our anchors let us down both leading in the straight only to get run down in sight of the finish. It is finals week for the V75, this week and the key again will be the anchors. In France, brilliant mare Roxane Griff spared our blushes at Vincennes, but in fairness to our other two selections, both were boxed in with nowhere to get out in the straight and were full of running. Brillantissime and Billie de Montfort are two to keep safe in the future. This week has two group ones in France, with the biggest stars of the track on show so it will be a great weekend’s racing. Good luck. V75-1 Silver division Final 2140m: This looks like a race in three with last start winners By Air (9) and Montgomery Gel (3) and impressive German-bred Chapeau (12) likely to hold the key to the opening leg. Selection  9-3-12 V75-2 Klass I, Final 2140m: In form Bear Dancer (6) was an expensive failure last time out when he broke close to the line and should be given a second chance. But there are three others with great credentials in this, so I think we should also include last time winners Uroy  (2), Miss Elaza (4) and Vacqueyras (5).    Selection 6-2-4-5 V75-3 Gold division, Final 2140m: Robert Bergh has certainly worked his magic with Amaru Boko (1) and from the ace draw  looks set to dominate, even though Bjorn Goop’s last start winner Baht Launcher (2) has claims. But we have to find a banker somewhere, and Amaru Boko is my solo pick.  Selection 1 V75-4 V75-Klass II, Final 2140m: Super Photogenic (11) has four wins in five starts, and though he is likely to face stiff competition from the likes of Chip Lane (3) Mellby Brunello (10) and Demo (2), our system demands a single pick somewhere.  So Super Photogenic (11) it is.  Selection 11 V75-5 Elite mares Final 2140m: This looks a tough one and the place to go wide with Stirling Allstar (7),  True Advantage  (12), Italy’s Rugiada Dei Rex   (5), Finland’s Beatasine (10) and Penny Of Man (6) the ones to throw in. Selection 7-12-5-10-6 V75-6 Bronze division Final 2140m: Impressive last start winner Rooibos (1), from the ace draw will probably hand up to Queasy (2), and these two look likely to slug this out, with the latter getting the nod for preference. Selection 2 (1) V75-7 V75 Champions League 2140m: Two international runners Italy’s Ponziopilato Stra    (7)and Netherland’s Absolut Newport  (8) are the two top selections here, although Checco Boko (3) and Kaka A.T. (10) also have claims. But  Ponziopilato Stra is our first choice with Absolut Newport an alternate.   Selection 7 (8) Prix Ephrem Houel 2875m: A 25m handicap on Akim du Cap Vert (9) and Axelle Dark (10)  prises this race wide open.  Coming into the mix are Adio Josselyn (2), Africain (3) and last start winner Alesia d'Atout (6) who looks well placed to make it two in a row. Selection 6 Prix de France 2175m: This will be the grand old champ Ready Cash (3)’s last race start and their will be many a sentimental wager being placed on the richest horse in harness. But with Maharajah deciding to return to Sweden, the stone-cold handicapper will  have his money on Up And Quick (7). Timoko  (2) and Yarrah Boko (9) are others with strong claims in this French  “sprint”.  Selection 7 Prix des Centaures (monte) 2200m: This is the first intergenerational race to feature the reduced handicaps of 25m for the aged contestants. This should make it much easier for the brilliant Vision Intense (15) to go back-to-back in this classique event. Others to have strong claims include Ulysse (14) and Anastasia Fella (6) off the front mark, but Jean-Philippe Dubois’ mare is special.  Selection 15 TOTAL COMBINATIONS 60 – Cost $5, +1 alternate $10, + 2 alternate $20 Also here are my win wagers from Solvalla. SOLVALLA SINGLE WAGERS $2 Race 5  By Air (9) Race 6 Bear Dancer (6) Race 7 Amaru Boko (1) Race 8 Super Photogenic (11) Race 9 True Advantage  (12) Race 10 Queasy (2) Race 11 Ponziopilato Stra     VINCENNES SINGLE WAGERS $2 Sat Race 4 Alesia d'Atout (6) Sun Race 5 Up And Quick (7) Race 6 Vision Intense (15)

The stellar career of the world's richest harness horse Ready Cash will come to an end after the running of the Prix de France at Vincennes on Sunday, a race which he won for the second time last year. Philippe Allaire's superstar is to retire to a fulltime career at stud after making a stunning start while still racing, with his first two crops producing multiple group winners. While the son of Imoko will be the sentimental favourite, the likely first pick of the punters will be runner-up to the absent Maharajah in the Prix d'Amerique Up And Quick. The brilliant son of Buvetier d'Aunou lost few friends in defeat a fortnight ago with a brave run in defeat to the Swede and will be at short odds to make it once better this time. Another likely to get support is Richard Westerink's Timoko, who was a fast-finishing fifth in the Prix d'Amerique without threatening to figure in the finish. The 'sprint' 2100m distance of the Prix de France might suit the son of Imoko better, Timoko won seven races last year, none further than 2400m. He has won at middle distance (2700m) at Vincennes, but only in restricted age-group races and was third in this race last year. Royal Dream was second in the race last year but the richly bred son of Love You has not been anywhere close to form this Winter Meeting. Seven is a recurring number for Jean-Philippe Dubois' former Prix d'Amerique winner. He was seventh in the big race this year and it has now been seven months and seven starts since he finished in the top three. Swedish bred and Norwegian owned and trained Yarrah Boko was flying home for third in the Prix d'Amerique and is not the worst chance in this. The son of Coktail Jet beat most of these home in the Prix de Belgique, and has been in super form, only once finishing out of the top three in his past 12 months racing. Compatriot and reigning Prix d'Ameriqe champion Maharajah has headed home, but Sweden will have a second presence through Noras Bean, who was a fourth in last year's race. The son of highly successful US export Super Arnie, who will have top Swedish driver Bjorn Goop in the bike, won his first start from a six-month break in the V75 at Aby last month and has a good record over the sprint distance. PRIX DE FRANCE  Vincennes 2014-02-09 Group one 4-10 2100m 400 000 euros 1 Noras Bean (h Super Arnie - Easy Bean) Tr: Björn Goop Dr: Ulf Stenströmer 2 Timoko (h Imoko - Kiss Me Coulonces) Tr: Jos Verbeeck Dr: Richard Westerink 3 Ready Cash (h Indy de Vive - Kidea) Tr: Franck Nivard Dr: Thierry Duvaldestin 4 Severino (h Gobernador - Katia de Tillard) Tr: Damien Bonne Dr: Roger Coueffin 5 The Best Madrik (h Coktail Jet - Lady Madrik) Tr: Jean Etienne Dubois Dr: Jean Etienne Dubois 6 Royal Dream (h Love You - Ida Bourbon) Tr: Jean Philippe Dubois Dr: Philippe Moulin 7 Up And Quick (h Buvetier d'Aunou - Fichtre) Tr: Jean Michel Bazire Dr: Franck Leblanc 8 Tiego d'Etang (h Chaillot - Harolene) Tr: Christian Bigeon Christian Dr: Bigeon 9 Yarrah Boko (h Coktail Jet - Big Blue Kitten Pierre Vercruysse Dr: Trond Anderssen 10 Univers de Pan (h Kenya du Pont - Gypsilore) Tr: Philippe Daugeard Dr: Philippe Daugeard 11 Uhlan du Val (h Islero de Bellouet - Indiana Beautiful) Tr: Cedric Megissier Dr: Cedric Megissier 12 Triode de Felliere (m Derby du Gite - Linea de Vandel) Tr: Anthony Barrier Dr: Jean Paul Marmion 13 Santa Rosa France (s Kaisy Dream - Helice France) Tr: William Bigeon Dr: Jean Luc Bigeon by David Sanders for Harnesslink.com  

Triskell Pacha, with Franck Nivard up, rallied to win today's Q+ Prix de Langeais at Paris-Vincennes. The seven year-old gelded son of Filio Josselyn defeated 19 rivals to take the winners share of the 85,000 euro purse for owner/trainer David Cherbonnel. The race was contested over 2850 meters with finishers two through five handicapped 25 meters. The winner secured his 11th career win now with earnings of 280,320 euros. The Q+ exact order winning ticket paid 5,455 euros excluding the 3.55 million euro jackpot. January 30, 2014 Paris-Vincennes, Prix de Langeais, 85,000 euro purse, 2850 meters, 20 starters, Quinte+ with jackpot 3.55 euro million  1.14.8kr 1st Triskell Pacha (7g Filio Josselyn-Derose de la Butte), Franck Nivard up for owner/trainer David Cherbonnel, 2.1/1, his 11th career win 2nd Sierra Leone (8f John Arifant-Une d'Havetot), Jean-William Hallais trainer/driver, 11/1, 25 meter handicap 3rd Starter du Rib (8g Ganymede-Jiviga), Mathier Abrivard, 31/1, 25 meter handicap 4th Sissi du Morin (8f Grassano-Haltise du Morin), Philippe Daugeard up, 10/1, 25 meter handicap 5th Tornade du Digeon (7f Jag de Bellouet-Herlane du Terme), J-M Bazire, 4.8/1, 25 meter handicap The Gr. III Prix de Verdun (2700 meters, 11 starters, 105,000 euro purse) for five year-olds was the day's racing feature and it went to Villeroi (5m Oiseau de Feux-Pocahontas-Defi d'Aunou) with trainer Jean-Etienne Dubois aboard. Villeroi recorded his fifth lifetime win and increased earnings to 255,590€ for owner Antonio De Sousa. He defeated the good Love You mare Violetta Mauzin handled by Franck Nivard. January 30, 2013 Paris-Vincennes, Prix de Verdun, Gr. III, 105,000 euros purse, 2700 meters, 11 starters  1.14.4kr 1st Villeroi (5m Oiseau de Feux-Pocahontas-Defi d'Aunou), Jean-Etienne Dubois, 7.8/1, fifth career victory for earnings of 255,590 euros, owner Antonio De Sousa 2nd Violetta Mauzin (5f Love You-Ocely de la Merite), Franck Nivard, 3/1 3rd Vaillant Cash (5m Offshore Dream-Kara du Redon), Mathieu Abrivard, 3/1 4th Voluntary Dream (5m Goetmals Wood-Luna d'Odyssee), Jean-Philippe Dubois, 9/1 5th Viva la Vida (5f Quaro-Perriere), Pierre Vercruysse, 14/1 Holland's Berry's Boy took the Prix Chambery for European males over the 2700 meter grand piste. The six year-old gelded son of Love You scored in 1.14.6kr to increase career earnings to 108,750 euros with his eight lifetime win. Jan-F Van Dooyeweerd trains the winner who scored at 18/1 for reinsman Pierre Vercruysse. This pair rallied to gain a short lead after the field turned into the long stretch and held off a host of competitors for a nose verdict. Italy's Oneghin del Ronco, also by Love You, was second for J-M Bazire and trainer Vincent Tufano. January 30, 2014 Paris-Vincennes, Prix Chambery European males, 18 starters, 48,000 euro purse, 2700 meters 1.14.6kr 1st Berry's Boy (6g Love You-Realy Furniture-Incredible Crafts), Pierre Vercruysse up for trainer Jan-F Van Dooyeweerd, 18/1 odds, eighth career win for 108,750 euros in earnings (Holland) 2nd Oneghin del Ronco (6m Love You-Talia del Ronco-Park Avenue Joe), J-M Bazire up for trainer Vincenzo Tufano, 5/1 (Italy) 3rd Unix des Forges (6g Nuage de Lait-Ottawa d;Orgeres), Eric Raffin, 5.3/1 4th Uvaro Vet (6m Diamant Gede-Harmonie Chery), Bertrand Le Beller, 6.8/1 5th Omas NP (6g Brandy dei Fiori-Franciosa Fgf), Ferdinando Pisacane, 49/1 (Italy) In separate news it was reported that Prix d'Amerique winner Maharajah was returned to Sweden and will not contest the Prix de France. It was also reported that now 11 year-old Commander Crowe has returned to light training in the stable of Fabrice Souloy who stated that the veteran Swedish registered gelded campaigner would only return to the races if physically fit. The coming weekend feature at Vincennes is the 200,000 euro monte Prix de L'Ile de France. Roxane Griff heads the eight horse field, making this her third major event appearance in as many weeks. She won the Prix de Cornulier on January 19 and then raced tough in the Prix d'Amerique last Sunday. Camille Levesque ridden Quarry Bay may be a major competitor in this one. by Thomas H. Hicks for Harnesslink.com  

Sweden's Moving On took today's Quinte+ Prix de Laval at Paris-Vincennes, scoring in 1.15kr over 2700 meters for reinsman David Thomain and trainer Fabrice Souloy. This European contest resulted in a truly European winner in the five year-old daughter of US registered Quite Easy from Kings Blondie (Sweden),she a daughter of Ride The Night (Finland). Quite Easy (Andover Hall-Marita's Victory-Valley Victory) is a half-brother to US winner From Above (Donato Hanover) and his second dam, Miss Marita, also produced Mr. Vic, Passionate Glide, Master Glide and Mr. Cantab. Third dam Keystone Profile produced Act Of Grace. Quite a family! January 28, 2014 Paris-Vincennes, Prix de Laval, European, 68,000€ purse, 2700 meters, 15 starters, Quinte+ 3.45€ million jackpot  1.15kr 1st Moving On (5f Quinte Easy-Kings Blondie-Ride The Night), David Thomain, 13/1. Fabrice Souloy trainer, IC Equine AB owner 2nd Vadapolina (5f Quaro-Miska des Rondes-Extreme Aunou), J-M Bazire driver/trainer, 2/1 3rd Vignia la Ravelle (5f Diamant Gede-Jirania la Ravelle-Bassano), Tony LeBeller, 4.8/1 4th Vita Bourbon (5f Love You-Kamara Bourbon-Cezio Josselyn), Mathieu Abrivard at 7.5/1 French turf press noted several outcomes from Sunday's Prix d'Amerique. Philippe Allaire reported that his Ready Cash would make his final career start in the upcoming Prix de France and would then be permanently retired to stud duty. His initial crops have been excellent. Trainer Franck Leblanc stated that Up And Quick would contest both the Prix de France and Prix de Paris and would then head to stud duty for the season. Stefan Hultman, trainer of Maharajah, said he would make a decision Friday on the Prix de France. Up And Quick The Prix d'Amerique visit by David McDuffee and trainer Richard Norman triggered speculation concerning a future European campaign for Bee A Magician, to follow in the hoof-steps of Moni Maker and her victory in France over a decade ago in 1999. by Thomas H. Hicks for Harnesslink.com  

Top level monte experts shared the stage today and thrilled the crowd with competitive races that showcased its equine stars. Super impressive Vision Intense (5f Prodigious-Intense Action-Cezio Joisselyn) overcame a 25 meter handicap to win again, today in the Prix Camille Blaisot (RMC). Nathalie Henry and her charge caught the field quickly and pressed on for the lead in a moderate pace. At various stages the pair patiently let contenders pass before re-taking the lead. Although Vision Intense drifted wide in the stretch, as she often does, the victory margin was secure in 1.15.4kr for owner Ecurie Victoria Dreams and trainer Philippe Moulin. January 26, 2014 Paris Vincennes, Prix Camille Blaisot (RMC), Gr. II monte, 2850 meters handicap by distance, 120,000e purse, 8 starters1.15.4kr Fractions: 1.16.7kr at 1500, 1.17.2kr at 1000, 1.15.8kr at 500, 1.15.4kr at finish 1st Vision Intense (5f Prodigious-Intense Action-Cezio Josselyn), Nathalie Henry up for Philippe Moulin and Ecurie Victoria Dreams, 1.2/1 odds favorite, her 11th career victory for 670,250€ won, overcame 25 meter handicap 2nd Valse Castelets (5f Memphis du Rib-Elide), J.L.C. Dersoir up for Joel Hallais, 1.8/1 3rd Valdice de Mars (5f Lynx de Bellouet-Tiphanie), Yohan Lebourgeois aboard at 13/1 4th Vamp Gede (5f Capriccio-Feerie Gede), Damien Bonne up at 17/1 5th Votka Bleue (5f Jasmin de Flore-Joyeuse Bleue), Franck Nivard up at 5.1/1 In the opener veteran monte performers started the day with a competitive battle in the Prix Jacques Andrieu for 120,000€. Recit Jeloca and Jean-Loic-Claude Dersoir just got past veteran mare Quarry Bay and Camille Levesque on the line in 1.14kr over 2850 meters. Quarry Bay was sensational as she overcame a 25 meter handicap and battled fiercely against fine competitors to the finish. January 26, 2014 Paris-Vincennes, Prix Jacques Andrieu, Gr. II International UET Masters Series monte, 120,000€ purse, 2850 meters, 11 starters  1.14kr Fractions: 1.14.6kr at 1500, 1.14.1kr at 1000, 1.14.4kr at 500, 1.14kr finish 1st Recit Jeloca (9g First de Retz-Flora Castelets), J.L.C. Dersoir trainer/jockey at 6.8/1 2nd Quarry Bay (10f Cygnus d'Odyssee-Barcarolle), Mlle. Camille Levesque up at 2/1 for Mike Lenders trainer 3rd Texas l'Iton (7g Cygnus d'Odyssee-LLiada de L'Iton), Yohan Lebourgeois up at 20/1 for trainer Henri Levesque 4th Nene' Degli Ulivi (7g Uconn Roc-Maureen Lobell), Alexandre Abrivard up as 1.5/1 favorite The monte events setup the Grand Prix d'Amerique in fine fashion showcasing superior talent under saddle. It's almost as if Stefan Hultman and Maharajah are taking bows not only for their special accomplishments this day, but for their counterparts in the other graded races on the card. All were worthy of thanks by the fans. by Thomas H. Hicks for Harnesslink.com  

Maharajah's stirring win of today's Grand Prix d'Amerique stamps him as a great horse and his trainer Stefan Hultman and ownership should be commended for their patient preparation for the big challenge. They did a great job and Orjan Kihlstom engineered a perfect trip for the son of Viking Kronos as he wore down the game and speedy Up And Quick (by Buvetier d'Aunou by Royal Prestige), with Jean-Michel Bazire teaming, as the line approached. It was an exciting race, contested by great horses. Fans were entertained by the pre-card parade, including the drivers in vintage autos, and the Republicaine Garde that put on a super show. January 26, 2014 Paris-Vincennes, Grand Prix d'Amerique, Gr. I International UET Masters Series, 2700 meters, 1,000,000€ purse, 18 starters 1.13.3kr Fractions: 1.14.3kr at 1500, 1.14.1kr at 1000, 1.13.7kr at 500, 1.13.3kr at finish 1st Maharajah (9m Viking Kronos-Chili Khan-Giant Chill), Orjan Kihlstom for trainer Stefan Hultman and owner Travkompaniets Stall AB, 8.7/1, 31st lifetime win for 2,602,451€ earned (Sweden) 2nd Up And Quick (6m Buvetier d'Aunou-Fichtre), J-M Bazire up for Franck Leblanc trainer and Ecurie Quick Star, 2.5/1 odds 3rd Yarrah Boko (9m Coktail Jet-Big Blue Kitten), Pierre Vercruysse up for Norway's Trond Anderssen trainer 19/1 (Norway, Sweden registered) 4th Roxane Griff (9f Tenor de Baune-Julia Mesloise), Eric Raffin up for Sebastien Guarato trainer, 21/1 5th Timoko (7m Imoko-Kiss Me Coulonces), Jos. Verbeeck up for trainer/owner Richard Westerink, 25/1 6th Uhlan du Val (6m Islero de Bellouet-Indiana Beautiful), Cedric Megissier up at 50/1 7th Royal Dream (9m Love You-Ida Bourbon), Jean-Philippe Dubois up, 29/1 Other non-disqualified finishers in order: Quinoa du Gers, Tiego d'Etang, Vanika du Ruel, Triode de Felliere, Nesta Effe, The Best Madrik, Mack Grace SM, Reve de Beylev The Prix d'Amerique was also the Quinte+ race of the day and it returned 82,364 for a two euro wager, even if one did not have the jackpot number that was worth 10 million euros this day. Despite heavy rain at times the enthusiastic crowd made their cheers heard and wagered heavily. Win-place wagering alone on the feature race neared 3.8 million euros. Swedish race fans had more to cheer about as Bjorn Goop won with Oasis Bi shortly afterward, in a dramatic win along the pylons from a huge gathering on the line. The son of Toss Out from the US exported mare Upfront JM scored in 1.12.6kr in the Gr. III Prix Rene Gougeon over 2100 meters. 16 starters faced the autostart in this one and it was a battle from the outset. Spain's hopeful, Trebol by Hot Blues, raced well again to be third for Gabriel-Angel Pou Pou as this pair are always competitive during Prix d'Amerique week. January 26, 2014 Paris Vincennes, Prix Jean-Rene Gougeon (Prix Chevrolet), 2100 meters, Gr. III European, 2100 meters autostart, 100,000€ purse, 16 starters 1.12.6kr Fractions: 1.09.4kr at 1500, 1.09.9kr at 1000, 1.12kr at 500, 1.12.6kr finish 1st Oasis Bi (6m Toss Out-Up Front JM), Bjorn Goop up at 8.5/1 2nd Seduisant Fouteau (8m Gazouillis-Elisalde), Charles Dreux up at 16/1 3rd Trebol (7m Hot Blues-Sally Can Wait), Gabriel-Angel Pou Pou trainer/driver at 30/1 (Spain) 4th The de Chine (7g Blue Eyes America-Haparine), J.L.C. Dersoir aboard at 13/1 5th Ut Viniere (8m Jasmin de Flore-Oasis Viniere), Mathieu Abrivard up at 93/1 by Thomas H. Hicks for Harnesslink.com  

VINCENNES, France - It is the Super Bowl, the World Cup soccer final, and the Melbourne Cup of harness racing rolled all into one at Vincennes for the Prix d'Amerique. You can't really experience the passion of the Prix d'Amerique from the plush 300 euro a seat restaurants, that perch imperious above the massed throng of 40,000 trotting diehards in the sprawling stand below. It is in a rain drenched crowd, bedecked in scarves of their favourite trotters, and national flags from Sweden, Norway and Italy, that the true passion of this great sport emerges. A wonderful crop of horses, the class of 2005 had claimed every Prix d'Amerique since 2011. And now in their twilight, Ready Cash and Royal Dream held a French nation's hopes, while Maharajah, born in the same spring but some miles to the north-east held an equally enamoured Swedish nation in his thrall. It was time for a change, said the level-headed pundits. Up And Quick was the rising star, and picked to shine. But two nation's hearts said not so fast. Greatness deserves a fitting finale. And so it was on this gloomy January day in Paris. It was the three big guns who fired all the shots in this magnificent race. Three great equine athletes delivered all that is noble about equine sport. Those with great hearts know no quit. And this was a race of the ages. Sweden's Maharajah eventually ruled supreme over France's heir apparent Up An Quick while Ready Cash could not keep stride with his unfathomable desire. A great end, to a great race. And I was privileged to witness history written. by David Sanders for Harnesslink.com  

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