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January 23, 2019 They shone in the 2019 edition The magical trio of Jean-Michel Bazire Belina Josselyn, Looking Superb and Davidson du Pont, respectively 1st, 2nd and 4th of the 2019 edition (review the race) are again in the running this year. The ambitions are the same but the distribution of forces is quite different, in particular by the rise in power of Davidson du Pont, qualified from the first race of winter and superb finisher in the recent Grand Prix de Belgique. To do better than last year Bold Eagle and Propulsion had to be content with small places in 2019 but are at the head of exceptional prize lists which give them again this year a leading role in the context of the race. Bold Eagle will participate in his fifth Grand Prix d’Amérique, a race which he has twice pinned down: in 2017 and 2018. He is the most active French trotter and can even pass Timoko to this classification in case of good weather. performance Sunday. Eric Raffin, Gold Sulky in 2019, will be associated with him: together they have two successes in four joint attempts. Twelve months ago, Bold Eagle finished 6th just behind the Swedish Propulsion, which will race the Grand Prix d’Amérique for the fourth time. He never won it but was there. In Scandinavia, it is the absolute benchmark in age horses and even more since the retirement of Readly Express. His bank account proves it: with more than 3 million euros in earnings, he is the second richest horse at the start. Three mares have shone in Europe in recent months and will also try to do better than in 2019. Uza Josselyn (7th) was crowned European Champion of Mares last summer (see article), Billie de Montfort (No Placed) won the European Tour of the French Trotter and Bahia Quesnot (Not Placed) lived an incredible 2019 season all over the planet-races (see article). Add to this beautiful skewer of champions, Délia du Pommereux (Disqualified) who arrives in much better shape than last year and pleased observers in the Grand Prix de Belgique. Finally, Valko Jenilat (Not Placed) will be the dean of the race from the age of 11, the maximum age newly authorized to participate in the race. We remember his prestigious success this summer at La Capelle (review the race). Qualified newcomers If all the aforementioned trotters can count on their experience to achieve the best possible performance, it will however be a great first for those featured in this chapter. Another common point: they and she all won their place by qualifying in one of the qualifying races. First of all, the very popular Chica de Joudes, who won her ticket at the British Grand Prix de Bretagne. Vivid Wise As achieved its goals in the Grand Prix de Bourgogne while Enino du Pommereux had to wait for the Grand Prix de Belgique (2nd) to secure his place on the starting grid. In the Prix Tenor de Baune and Critérium Continental, there was only one qualifying ticket, so you shouldn’t miss it. The displays of strength and speed of Excellent and Face Time Bourbon convinced their supporters and perhaps even converted some of them. The foreign coalition Three trotters from Europe complete this peloton of eighteen units: the Swedish Milligan’s School presented by Stefan Melander, the Italian Vitruvio and Ringostarr Treb, winner in 2018 of the Elitloppet and 7th in the 2018 edition of the Grand Prix d’Amérique. For the full field click here Reprinted with permission of Le Trot    

January 23., 2020 - Today’s Quinte+ race of the day was the Prix de la Semaine Intertnational (purse 50,000€, 2850 meters, European eligibles) at Paris-Vincennes with the 1.17.1kr timed victory earned by 14/1 odds Docteur d’Erable (7g Ganymede-Rue d’Erable). David Thomain teamed the J.P. Thomain trainee for Ecurie du Haras d’Erable. His life earnings are now 234,490€. 10/1 Champion Dore (8g Prince Gede) was second for Matthieu Abrivard with 14/1 Dandy de Godrel (7m Timoko) third for Alexandre Abrivard. 8.5/1 Moni Viking (7m Maharajah) with Pierre Vercruysse up and 159/1 Chistera (8f Qwerty) handled by J.Ph. Monclin completed the top five and set up an exact order Q+ payoff of 353,865.60€. The Q+ pool was 3,064,804€ and over 6,732,000€ was wagered on the race. Yesterday the Q+ race was at Cagnes sur Mer in the Prix Une de Mai (purse 44,000€, 2925 meters) with the 1.13.4kr timed victory going to 7/10 favorite Elsa de Belfonds (6f Tornado Bello-Taifa). Nicolas Ensch teamed and trains this now 12 time winner for owner Thomas Levesque. Elsa has career earnings of 353,690€. She scored by less than a length over 23/1 Creature Castelets (8f Pomerol de Laumac) with J.Ch. Feron at the lines. Nicolas Ensch also trains this one. The other top five finishers were 89/1 Baronne de Bapre, 7.8/1 Christo and 147/1 Balthazar Maza and these longshots created a Q+ exact order payoff of 26,005.80€. The Q+ pool was 3,313,927€ and over 7,274,000 was wagered on the race. Elda e Belfonds Groupe Contests at Vincennes (plus amateur classic), listed below, will make the upcoming weekend very special. January 25: Prix de Luxembourg (100,000€, Gr. III International, 2100 meters autostart) Coupe d’Europe des Amateurs (14,000€, 2100 meters autostart, International)   January 26 Prix Harley-Davidson (Prix Camille Blaisot) Gr. II monte, 100,000€, 2850 meters Prix Case IH (Prix Jacques Andrieul) Gr. II monte, 100,000€, 2850 meters, International Prix RMC (Prix Charles Tiercelin) Gr. II, 100,000€, 2100 meters autostart, European Prix d’Amerique, Gr. I, 900,000€, 2700 meters, International Prix Gras Savoye Willis Towers Watson, Gr. III, 80,000€, 2100 meters autostart, European Prix Lenotre (Prix Helen Johansson), Gr. III, 80,000€, 2100 meters autostart, European Prix Fondation Pour la Rechache Medicale, Gr. III, 60,000€, 2100 meters autostart, European In addition, certain races are named for other sponsors Lalique, Printemps Nation and 20 Minutes. Thomas H. Hicks  

January 23, 2019 - Today begins the annual Arqana-Trot mixed sale at Paris-Vincennes. This attractive sales includes stallion shares, season 2020 breedings, broodmares and racing stock. There are three sessions, 7:00pm today local time and 11:00am and 7:00pm tomorrow with the last two sessions sharing the stage with the Etalons Expo. Dinner is served in the sale facility. The Expo hosts many exhibits by stud farms, stallion owners, equipment and feed suppliers. The sale and Expo draw a huge audience from throughout Europe. For the Catalogue click here. Thomas H. Hicks

Tuesday’s Paris-Vincennes featured Prix de Pont-Audemar (purse 53,000€, 2100 meters autostart) saw 1.2/1 Golden Renka (4m Saxo de Vandel-Saskia des Emois) rally to a harnes racing victory for pilot Jean Michel Bazire, Ecurie Ostheimer and trainer J-M Baudouin.   The winner was clocked in 1.12.6kr as he won for the fourth time in 16 career starts, now for 108,190€ earned. 4.9/1 Gwendolo Bella (4m Booster Winner) was second for owner/trainer/driver Christophe Feyte and 5.4/1 Genet de Boitron (4g Ubriaco) took third with owner/trainer Franck Anne aboard.   Racing action returned on the weekend (January 19) at Madinina Martinique with the Prix de la Societe des Courses de Madinina (purse 5,000€, 2600 meters on the turf, distance handicap) and victory went to Beautiful Atout (9g Roc Meslois-Saga d’Atour) with owner/trainer Alexandre Faivre aboard. The winner recorded his first win in Martinique and first career victory now for 62,280€ earned. Bavarois Varlet and Boycott trained the winner, these two handicapped 50 and 25 meters.   Beautiful Atout On the Madinina card was also the Prix Claude Cayol (purse 5,000€, 2600 meters distance handicap on the turf) saw 25 meter handicapped Ussein Royal (12g Lilium Madrik-Heloire) score in 1.20.3kr for J.F. Gate, his third win in the last four starts and 13 th in his career, now for 83,160€ in life earnings. 25 meter penalized Unoki and non-penalized Avais Contraire trailed the winner to the line in a driving finish.   Thomas H. Hicks

January 19, 2020 - Saturday’s Cornulier harness racing program at Vincennes included several other groupe level races and some other interesting events. The Prix Roxane Griff (monte, purse 50,000€, 2175 meters, nine starters) began the “interesting” action with a quick 1.11kr clocked victory by 9/10 favorite Egao Jenilou (6g Village Mystic-Queen Jenilou) with Eric Raffin aboard for trainer Louis Baudron. He won for the ninth time in 26 career starts now for 272,460€ earned. 7/2 Dede de Montauren and 9/1 Daniel Bon trailed the winner to the line. The first groupe test was the Prix Bellino II (Gr. III, purse 80,000€, 2100 meters, 11 starters) and 5.5/1 Gimy du Pommereux (4m Coktail Jet-Noune du Pommereux) scored for Matthieu Abrivard, trainer Sylvain Roger and owner Noel Lolic. The victory was his fourth in 12 career starts now for 132,810 in life earnings. 18/1 Gia Olmenhof (4f Ready Cash) rallied for second for Christophe Martens and 2/1 Girolamo (4m Uriel Speed) took third for Franck Ouvrie. Gimy du Pommereux The 80,000€ purse Prix de Mirande (Gr. III, 2700 meters, eight five year old starters) produced a 1.12kr timed victory for 3/2 odds Fire Cracker (5g Quaro-Urganza) for Eric Raffin at the lines for trainer Gregory Thorel. He scored for the eighth time in 24 appearances for career earnings of 191,200€. 1.1/1 favorite Fairplay d’Urzy (5m Ready Cash) and driver Jean Michel Bazire was second and 6/1 Foxtrot Sea (5m Olitro) was third for Cedrik Megissier. Fire Cracker The Gr. III Prix Michel Marcel Gougeon (purse 90,000€, 2850 meters, nine starters) saw 3.2/1 Eliot d’Ambri (6g Tipunch River-Rivale du Raleis) score for the hot teamster Eric Raffin. Race time was 1.14.9kr as the winner increased his career earnings to 196,380€. 2.8/1 Eclat de Gloire (6g Tiego d’Etang) was second for Loris Garcia and 10/1 Éclair du Mirel (6m Orlando Vici) and pilot Matthieu Abrivard took third money. Eliot d’Ambri Monte action resumed in the Prix Camille de Wazieres (Gr. II, purse 100,000€, 2175 meters, eight starters). 5.6/1 Gospel Pat (4m Uriel Speed-Namorosa) scored timed in 1.12.9kr for jockey David Thomain and trainer Philippe Allaire. This was his fifth career victory in 16 outings now for 174,050€ earned. 6.5/1 Gef de Play (4m Gazouillis) was second with Adrien Lamy in the irons for owner/trainer Franck Leblanc. 5.1/1 Gainsborough (4m Bird Parker) took third with Yoann Lebourgeois up. Gospel Pat   Thomas H. Hicks  

The 5/10 favorite Bilibili (9m Niky-Quetty du Donjon) stalked the leaders and wore them down in late stretch to win the Prix de Cornulier (Gr. I International Monte, purse 650,000€ 2700 meters, 16 starters) for jockey Alexandre Abrivard clocked in 1.12.1kr off even fractions. Laurent Claude Abrivard trains the winner for breeder/owner Jean Pierre Barjon as Bilibili repeated his 2019 victory and now has 14 career wins in 45 starts for 1,803,100€ earned. Roxane Grif was also a repeat winner in recent years (2015-16). The 17/1 Etoile e Bruyere (6f Kenor de Cosse) held second for Adrien Lamy and trainer Charles Dreux. Third was 14/1 Feeling Cash (5m Ready Cash-Royale Star) with Eric Raffin in the irons for trainer Philippe Allaire and owner Carlos Lerner. The 75/1 Carla du Castelets and 31/1 Evangelina Blue completed the top five. The exact order Quinte+ top five payoff was 9.905.60 to 174 ticketholders. The Q+ pool was 5,808.430€ and over 11,937,000€ was wagered on the race.  To watch the replay, click here. The time of the race in kilometers was 1'12''1, which did not break last year’s record of 1'11''2, but it was still the 4th best time in the history of the race. Alexandre Abrivard signs a third victory in the Grand Prix de Cornulier, twenty days after being crowned Etrier d'Or for the second time. His trainer Laurent-Claude Abrivard won for the second time with the developer costume (he also won it as a jockey). For owner-breeder Jean-Pierre Barjon, this is a new triumph in one of the two biggest winter races at Paris-Vincennes, he too who saw his colors shine in the Grand Prix d'Amérique with Meaulnes of Corta . The Grand Prix d'Amérique whose 2020 edition is also on the horizon for next week. This time, the father and son Abrivards will be gathered around Excellent , winner of the Ténor de Baune Prize and candidate for the first places. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

Top groupe level action at Paris-Vincennes began this day with the Gr. II Prix de Pardieu (purse 100,000€, monte, 2175 meters, four year olds) and 14/1 Girly Beco (4f Tiego d’Etang-Verveine Gede) scored 1.12.7kr for jockey Guillaume Martin and trainer Michel Bezier. Herve Guain is the owner/breeder. The 26/1 Gloria Berry (4f Quaker Jet-Tequila Berry) was second with J.Y. Ricart in the irons for owner/trainer Jean Michel Bazire and 2.4/1 Gladys des Plaines (4f Opus Viervil) held third with Eric Raffin up. The co-feature this day was the Gr. III Prix de Brest (purse 90,000€, 2850 meters distance handicap, European) with the outstanding victory to 50 meter handicapped and 4/10 favorite Cleangame (8g Ouragon de Celland-Red Bell) reined by trainer Jean Michel Bazire for owner J-M Rancoule. Cleangame was clocked in a quick 1.11.2kr to record his 33rd victory in 50 career starts, now for 1,269,720€ earned. He stormed home from far back to engage the leaders early in the lane in a furious finish to then hold off 20/1 and 25 meter handicapped Anzi des Liards (10g Look de Star) with Romain Derieux up. The 32/1 Ble du Gers (9g Quinoa du Gers) held third for Nicolas Bazire, trainer Jean Michel and owner Rancoule. 61/1 Carly Loulou (8f Gazouillis) and 89.1 Usain Henna (10m Super Light) completed the top five this Quinte+ event. The exact order Q+ payoff was 24,212.60€ to 42 winning ticketholders with the Q+ pool reaching 4,283,257€ and over 9,239,000€ was wagered on the race. Cleangame The Prix de Pornichet (purse 67,000€, monte, 2700 meters) saw 8.4/1 Bleu Ciel (9g Milord Drill-Quelle Action) win for Adrien Lamy and trainer Jean Morice timed in 1.12.8kr. The winner earned his 15th career victory in 90 starts now for 378,110€ earned. 5,8/1 Boston Terrie (9g Kesaco Phedo) was second ahead of 6.4/1 Cesar de Vrie (8g Magnificent Rodney). Bleu Ciel Sunday the monte champions will contest the Gr. I Prix de Cornulier for a total purse of 650,000€ and we will see if the 2019 winner Bilibili can repeat. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

Hungary’s National Trotting Breeders' Association continues its training series, which was launched in 2018, on January 28, 2020 (10:30 am at Kincsem Park), when a world-recognized harness racing breeder and executive, Dr. Paul F. ’’Pete” Spears, will direct our further training. Dr. Spears is President of the Standardbred Horse Sales Company, that conducts an annual early November auction in Harrisburg, PA ((USA), and formerly Vice President of Hanover Shoe Farms, practically growing up there, as his father worked as President and Treasurer of that world renown breeding facility. Dr. Spears has been very active in trot racing and breeding for several decades (his family’s Windsong Stable bred Hambletonian winner Windsong’s Legacy among many stakes winners), and his main expertise is genetics, pedigree analysis and auctions. Standardbred Horse Sales Company In his lecture, Dr. Spears will present examples of the possibility of pairing on related breeding and line breeding issues. He gives his opinion on the x-position and talks about the correct decisions that affect the effectiveness of breeding. There's great interest in this event. In view of this, please indicate your intention to participate by e-mail (ugeto@ugeto.com) as soon as possible. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

This Sunday Bilibili (9m Niky) faces 15 rivals in the harness racing monte classic Gr. I Grand Prix de Cornulier (purse 650,000€, 2850 meters) at Paris-Vincennes as he seeks to defend his 2019 victory. Traders. Fadu du Chene, Feeling Cash and the young mare Fleche Bourbon are in the field. Bilibili tuned up with a January 5th 1.13kr timed score in the Gr. II Prix du Calvados, a race he also won in 2018 and 2019. He won the Cornulier in 2019 clocked in 1.11.2kr, his best since a 1.10.5kr win in the 2017 Gr. I Prix I’Ile de France over the shorter 2175 meter distance. Jean Pierre Barjon bred and owns Bilibili that will have Alexandre Abrivard in the irons. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

The Grand Prix de Cornulier (monte, Gr.I International, 2700 meters, purse 650,000€) is set for Sunday and initially 29 horses were engaged in what is likely to be an 18 horse field. The well-regarded Bilibili, Fado du Chene and Traders are among the top prospects. Bilibili, trained by Laurent Claude Abrivard for breeder/owner Jean Pierre Barjon, is a nine year old son of Niky and has proven to be an accomplished monte performer as he won the 2019 version of the Cornulier, the richest monte event, and has lifetime earnings of 1,510,600€. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

Today’s superb Belgique harness racing program also had other groupe level events on the stage. The Prix de Riberac (Gr. IiI, 70,000€ purse, 2700 meters, 15 starters) saw 5/1 Garibaldi (4m Love You-Venitienne) score in 1.13.4kr for Jean Phillipe Monclin and owner Manuel Martinez. The winner recorded his fourth career victory in 11 starts now for 126,780€ earned. The winner joined the hunt with slightly over 500 meters remaining and was a decisive factor in the lane. 17/1 Gelati Cut (4m Coktail Jet) was second for Alexandre Abrivard, ahead of 27/1 Galaxie du Goutier (4f Kaisy Dream) with Clement Duvaldestin aboard. The Prix Association Nationale des Turfistes (purse 67,000€, 2100 meters autostart) saw the turf writers on hand to make the winners presentation to 5.9/1 odds Belle Louise Mabon (9f Derby du Giute), the 1.11.9kr timed victorious trainee of breeder/owner/trainer Yves Dreaux. Eri Raffin was the pilot as Belle Louise won for the eighth time in 58 starts now for 358,980€ in life earnings. “Louise” was there to help receive the winners’ congratulations. The 7/10 favorite Charmeause Royale was second for owner/trainer/driver Matthieu Abrivard ahead of Black Jack From reined by Jean Michel Bazire. Belle Louise Mabon The Prix Djerid (monte Gr. III, purse 90,000€, 2200 meters, eight European starters) completed today’s groupe action and in this one the 1.12.1kr winner was the game 5.2/1 Daida de Vandel (7f Real de Lou - Gallia de Vandel) handled by jockey Alexandre Abrivard for trainer Laurent Claude Abrivard. It was her 10 th career victory in 42 starts and her raised lifetime earnings to 402,580€. Eroa du Chene (6m Un Amour d’Haufor) was second with P.Ph. Ploquin in the irons for trainer Julien La Mer and owner Claude Guedj. 1.9/1 favorite Curly (8g Rolling d’Heripre) took third for jockey Matthieu Abrivard and trainer Thierry Duvaldestin. Daida de Vandel With the day complete some analysts foresee an Amerique lineup that might look something like shown below. Here the bold print horses are those already qualified. Those with a question mark are just that, unknowns at this moment. Several of the outsiders are lifetime winners of over a million euro. It appears that the Cornulier (January 19) is not factored in below.   Thomas H. Hicks

Belina Josselyn (9f Love You-Lezira Josselyn) took today’s Prix de Belgique (Gr. II International, purse 110,000€, 2850 meters, 15 starters) reined by her trainer Jean Michel Bazire for owner/breeder Yvan Bernard. Belina, the 2019 Prix d’Amerique winner, won for the 22nd time in 71 career starts now for 2,335,470€ earned. She emerged from second tier positioning with over 500 meters remaining and covered her last 500 in 1.10kr. She was off at 2.5/1 odds and bested 2.8/1 Enino du Pommereux (6m Coktail Jet) with Matthieu Abrivard up for trainer Sylvain Roger and owner Noel Lolic that was clocked also in 1.12.6kr. The 62/1 Davidson du Pont (7m Pacha du Pont) was third with Franck Ouvrie up for trainer JMB and owner/breeder Albert Rayon. 23/1 Erming d’Oliverie (6f Scipion du Goutier) was fourth for pilot Adrian Lamy and trainer Franck Leblanc. The next three to the line were 35/1 Delia du Pommeruex (7f Niky), 62/1 Looking Superb (7m Orlando Vici), also a JMP trainee, and 6/1 Uza Josselyn (9f Love You) that rallied after being shuffled almost to the end, She was clocked in 1.12.9kr that illustrates the competitiveness of this field. To see the race replay, click here. Belina Josselyn and Enino du Pommereux join the 10 horses previously qualified in the six qualifying races leading to the Prix d'Amerique that began in 1920 and has been raced in each year thereafter except two years during WWII when Vincennes was used as a military camp. The Prix d'Amerique (created to honor America’s efforts to save France in World War I) to be held January 26 will have 18 starters with invites to follow the 12 now qualified. One could be the January 19 Prix du Cornulier winner, this the Gr. I 650,000€ purse monte classic. Today’s Prix de Belgique was the Q+ race of the day with a special 1,000,000€ tireline (bonus). The exact order payoff was 105,369.20€ paid to 20 winning ticketholders. The Q+ pool was 5,896,091€ and over 11,669,000€ was wagered on the race (all wagers). Havana d’Aurcy takes Prix Gelinotte Wedge Institiute Groupe action began this day with the Gr. II Prix Gelinotte Wedge Institute (purse 100,000€, 2700 meters, three-year olds) and the 9/10 favorite Havana d’Aurcy (3f Royal Dream-Avila) prevailed handily for trainer/driver Jean Michel Bazire and owner Cyril Lelarge. Havana scored for the fourth time in eight career starts now for131,700€ earned. Race time was 1.16.2kr. The 44/1 Hora Beji (3f Ni Ho Ped d’Ombree) was second for Franck Nivard and 4.4/1 Heroine Darling (3f Brillantissime-Rapid Darling) rallied nicely to be third for pilot Matthieu Abrivard, trainer Kevin Vanderschelden and owner Jean Pierre Dubois. Of note, yesterday in the US the Dubois champion mare Crys Dream foaled a Tactical Landing filly. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

Today at Bergsaker, Sweden was the Zoogins STL Gold, raced over 2140 meters autostart, for a purse to the winner of 150,000SEK. Elian Web (9g Like A Prayer-EL Dolly-Conway Hall), off at 4.14/1, scored easily on the front end timed in 1.12.4kr, with Jorma Kontio at the lines. Melkko Katja trains this now winner 23 times in 59 starts for 6,275,867SEK earned. The 1.28/1 favorite Propulsion (9m Muscle Hill-Danae), handled by Orjan Kihlstrom for trainer Daniel Reden, was second in what was to be a prep for the Prix d’Amerique. He was clocked in 1.12.6kr after briefly challenging the leader on the final lap. He fell back, dropped to the pocket and trailed the winner home in the lane. 80/1 Narold Vox (11g Orlando Vici) was third for Mats Djuse. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

Helgafell (3m Charly du Noyer-Baaria) began groupe action this day by winning the Gr. II Prix Maurice de Gheest (purse 100,000€, 2700 meters, 10 three year old starters) at Paris-Vincennes. Eric Raffin teamed the 5/10 favorite for trainer Phillipe Allaire and Ecurie Normandy Spirit. He won for the sixth time in seven career starts now for 182,900€ earned. Marial Turbiaux bred this winner that scored in 1.16.1kr. 4.8/1 Heaven’s Pride (3m Brillantissime-Queenly Pride) took second for pilot David Thomain and trainer Allaire, followed by 10/1 Holzarte Vedaquais (3m Brillantissime-Chikka Vedaquaise) that Francois Lagadeuc drove for trainer/owner Allaire. Heartbreaker One was fourth for Bjorn Goop. The Quinte+ Gr II Prix de Croix (purse 100,000€, 2850 meters, 13 European starters) brought out some top five-year olds in that class and victory was earned by 9/1 Feliciano (5m Ready Cash-Ravenella). David Thomain was the pilot for trainer Philippe Allaire and owner Ecurie des Charmes. The 1.13.4kr timed winner scored for the 10th time in 30 career starts now for 474,340€ earned.  The 29/1 Falco de Laurma (5m Uniclove-Rangoon) took second with Franck Nivard up for trainer Thierry Duvaldestin with third to 5.6/1 Fleche du Yucca (5f Prodigious-Vincenza) handled by Jean Philippe Dubois for his Ecurie Victoria Dreams and trainer Philippe Moulin. 90/1 Florida Sport (5f Tornado Bello) and 22/1 Fashion Queen (5f Ready Cash) completed the top five. The exact order Q+ payoff was 20,833€ paid to 31 winning ticketholders. The Q+ pool was 4,414,116€ and over 9.304,000€ was wagered on the race (all wagering pools). The Gr. III Prix du Forez (purse 80,000€, 2700 meters, 10 European starters) is an opportiunity to impress and perhaps gain an Amerique berth, no guarantees however. J-M Bazire send out a flock of starters and he won driving his 6.7/1 trainee Valokaja Hindo (9m Great Challenger-Hindo Enghave) to the 1.11.9kr victory. Hindo, owned in Norway by Eirik Djuve, won for 11th time in 25 appearances in France to raise his life earnings to 582,920€. He stormed home from the backfield to score over five rivals also timed in 1.11.9kr. 5.5/1 Dorgoss de Guez (7g Romcok de Guez-Lady Fromentro) was second for Nicolas Bazire and trainer JMB, ahead of 5/1 Tessy d’Ete (8f Ganymede-Love Me Tender) reined by Franck Nivard. 118/1 Alamo du Goutier was fourth for owner/trainer/driver Vincent Hebert and fifth was 9/2 pacesetter Mindyourvalue WF (7g Hovding Lavec) for Yoann Lebourgeois. Dreambreaker and Chica de Joudes completed the top seven with nine horses clocked in 1.12.1kr or better. Hindo’s pedigree is 100% standardbred and the sire Great Challenger was a US$160,000 yearling. His dam was registered in Denmark and is by Victor Victor from a Buckfinder mare. Late in the card in the Prix de Bois-Guillaume (purse 33,000€, 2100 meters autostart) the great veteran horseman Pierre Levesque was in the winner’s circle after teaming 8.5/1 Furyo (5g Quaker Jet-Laliflo Gede) to a 1.13.2kr victory. He owns and bred this now four-time winner that Thomas Levesque conditions. Levesque drives sparingly now but what a career he has enjoyed as driver and trainer. As driver he won the Prix d’Amerique in 2007-2008 with trainee Offshore Dream and with trainee Meaulnes du Corta he won the 2010 Prix de France, 2009-2010 Grand Criterium de Vitesse with Meaulnes and the 2006 Criterium Continental with that horse. As trainer he also won the Prix d’Amerique with Mealunes plus the 2009 Prix de France, the 2005 Criterium 5 Ans and the 2004 Prix de Selection. Meaulnes du Corta retired with 2,786,760€ earned and Offshore Dream won 1,992,024€. With the victory today Pierre Levesque has 2,317 driving wins in 15,283 starts (and 1,511 wins as trainer). He has won over 100 races in five seasons. by Thomas H. HIcks, for Harnesslink

Jean Michel Bazire teamed his trainee Feydeau Seven (5m Redeo Josselyn-Unanime Seven) to a 1.13.9kr victory in today’s Quinte+ Prix de Mauriac (purse 53,000€, 2850 meters, 16 starters) at Paris-Vincennes, his ninth career in 18 starts now for 175,010€ earned. He was off as the 1.9/1 favorite. 33/1 Fiorentina Somolli (5f Love You) was second for Matthieu Abrivard and 31/1 Flaya Kalouma (5f Royal Dream) took third for Gabriel Angel Pou Pou. The 28/1 Flight Dynamic (5m Scarlet Knight) was fourth for Franck Ouvrie ahead of 90/1 Borups Senator (5m SJs Caviar) with Pierre Vercruysse up. The outsiders set up an exact order Q+ payoff of 165,693€ paid to four ticketholders. The Q+ pool this day was 3,395,049€ and the total of all wagering pools on this race exceeded 7,578,000€. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink

Sunday at Paris-Vincennes is the fourth “B”  race leading to the 900,000€ Prix d’Amerique 2020, it’s the Gr. II Grand Prix de Belgique for 110,000€ purse and raced over 2850 meters. The harness racing field includes the 2019 Elitloppet winner Dijon, 2019 Prix d'Amerique winner Belina Josselyn and a few that have already qualified – Looking Superb, Delia du Pommereux and Davidson du Pont. Others that need a good showing are Enino du Pommereux, Carat Williams and Uza Josselyn, the latter coming in off two fourth place finishes in the last two “B” races. Qualifiers (10) to date for the 2020 Grand Prix d’Amerique include: GP Bretagne – Davidson du Pont, Chica de Joudes, Looking Superb GP Bourbonnais – Delia de Pommereux, Bold Eagle, Billie de Montfort GP Bourgogne – Billie de Montfort (previously qualified), Bahia Quesnot, Vivid Wise As Criterium Continental – Face Time Bourbon Prix Tenor de Baune – Excellent Amerique 2020 Promo https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=2&v=3xXBtbY56Ko&feature=emb_logo We’re heading to a highly competitive Prix d'Amerique the last Sunday this month. by Thomas H. Hicks, for Harnesslink  

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