Maiden winners weekly (May 9th to 14th)

15 May 2017

Photos scoopdyga.com

Every Tuesday, we focus on the maiden winners of the previous week on France Galop racecourses, an opportunity to learn a little bit more on tomorrow’s champions ... 

LA MICHODIÈRE (f3), IRE by Power and Lady Gray (High Chaparral)
Prix de la Michodière (Unraced 3yoF, 1,600m turf), May 13, Deauville

Owner: Jean-Claude Rouget
Trainer: Jean-Claude Rouget
Breeder: Edgridge Ltd & Glenvale Stud
Rider: Christophe Soumillon

The gray filly La Michodière started well but was held up in rear and only came by in the latter stages to pip Vicugna (Pivotal), a sister to SoFast (Rock of Gibraltar), second in the Prix Jean-Luc Lagardère (Gr1) in 2011.

Purchased as a yearling at Goffs Ireland by Jean-Claude Rouget for €25,000, La Michodière was bred in Ireland from unraced mare Lady Gray. Lady Gray's dam ran all right, but she won her maiden nearly two years after her debut, over 5 furlongs at Musselburgh, which did not stop her from producing a Gr3 winner, Sesmen (Inchinor).

One must go back to the third dam of La Michodière, Nasseem (Zeddaan), an Aga Khan-bred who was placed in a Gr1, to find an abundance of black type ...

MURAFRIF (f3), IRE by Sea the Stars and Riqa (Dubawi)
Prix ​​de Louveciennes (Maiden, 3yoF, 2,500m turf), May 13, Deauville

Owner: Hamdan Al Maktoum
Trainer: Freddy Head
Breeder: Shadwell Estate
Rider: Jérôme Moutard

Murafrif had done weel for her debut in a race won by Rueing (Street Cry) on the 1,900 meters-Fibresand at Chantilly. She had followed the pacesetter and never let go although she was unable to accelerate and had to settle for 6th place. Deliberately held up this time by apprentice Jérôme Moutard, who enjoyed a 3.5 kilos claim here, she irresistibly rose to prominence and just edged Bébé d'Amour (Montmartre), a neck ahead Cap Vérité (Cape Cross), also coming from the rear.

Bred in Ireland by her owner Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum of Dubai, Murafrif is the second foal out of Riqa, who won twice in France but couldn't quite win a Liestd as she fell short thrice at that level, once by a mere nose. Murafrif's only older sibling, Jawlaat (Shamardal), made 16,000 Guineas at Tattersalls in February last year. There is also a 2-year-old sister by Teofilo.

The great Allegretta is Murafrif's 5th dam, which leads us to her daughter Urban Sea, and therefore Galileo and Sea the Stars, or Anabaa Blue and Tamayuz ...

FINCHE (c3), GB by Frankel and Binche (Woodman)
Prix du Dragon (Unraced 3yo, 1,600m turf), Sunday May 14, 2017 in Deauville

Owner: Khalid Abdullah
Coach: André Fabre
Breeder: Juddmonte Farms
Jockey: Vincent Cheminaud

Up in front early on, Finche was pushed early enough by Vincent Cheminaud and looked threatened and even outpaced by Zorawar (Shamardal) at some stage but neverthelss held on and eventually prevailed, Zorawar losing second place to Copacetic (Lawman) in the end.

Bred by saudi owner Khalid Abdullah at his Juddmonte stud farms, Finche is brother of the very good Byword (Peintre Célèbre), winner of the Prince of Wales' Stakes (Gr1) at the royal meeting of Ascot and now a sire in South Africa, and Proviso (Dansili), who was bred the same year as Zarkava and Goldikova, finished 4th in the Prix de Diane (Gr1) before becoming one of the best mares in the United States where she won four consecutive Gr1s.

Main entries : Juddmonte Grand Prix de Paris (Gr1).

WARREN (c2), FRA by Elusive City and Danlepordamsterdam (War Front)
Prix de Mondovi (Maiden, 2yo, 1,000m turf),  May 14, Deauville

Owner: Mint Stables, Civil Society Stables Bred To Win, Yann Barberot
Trainr: Yann Barberot
Breeder: Gestüt Zur Kuste AG
Rider: Theo Bachelot

Fast out of the gate, the unraced Warren, a February colt, made a difference early to secure the race with three lengths to spare over White Feather (Bated Breath), who had already raced. Bought by his trainer Yann Barberot at Arqana v2 last August, Warren is the first foal out of Danlepordamsterdam, who was also trained by Yann Barberot for her breeder Maurice Lagasse (Pontchartrain Stud). The mare won to Argentan before entering stud. It is an versatile family pedigree since under the 3rd dam there is a Gr3 winner in the United States, and a winner of the Marseille Cup (L).

CASTERTON (c3), IRE by Fastnet Rock and Chenchikova (Sadler's Wells)
Prix ​​des Marronniers (Maiden, 3yoC&G, 2,500m Turf), May 14, Deauville

Owner: OTI Management, Susan Magnier
Trainer: André Fabre
Breeder: Chenchikova Syndicate
Rider: Pierre-Charles Boudot

It was Casterton's fourth attempt after two second places at Croisé-Laroche at 2 and then Compiègne for his return this season, and a fifth place in Chantilly. It was also his first test over 2,500 meters and it certainly made the difference, the son of Fastnet Rock clearly taking over his main rivals in the last three hundred yards after gradually making his way to the lead in the second and final turn. Casterton is joint owned by an Australian syndicate and Mrs John Magnier, one of the founders of the great Irish stud farm Coolmore. His dam Chenchikova is a full sister to champion and sire High Chaparral (Sadlers' Wells), winner of the Racing Post Trophy (Gr1) at 2, of the Epsom and Irish Derbies, and of two Breeders'Cup Turf ... Yet she won only one race but gave a few other useful winners before Casterton.

Main entries : QIPCO Prix du Jockey Club (Gr1), Juddmonte Grand Prix de Paris (Gr1).