Tuesday 20 March 2018

Makfi floors Goldikova in France

Keith Hamer

Makfi gave star milers Goldikova and Paco Boy a shock when scooting to victory in yesterday's Prix Jacques le Marois at Deauville.

The English 2,000 Guineas winner left a dismal display in the St James's Palace Stakes well behind him to show his Classic victory was no fluke.

The Mikel Delzangles-trained colt led inside the final furlong and drew away from his field on the rain-softened ground to score comfortably by two and a half lengths from Goldikova, with Paco Boy just behind in third.

The first three pulled six lengths clear of Fuisse in fourth.

As expected, Goldikova's two pacemakers Saying and Only Green set off in front, with the brilliant mare, seeking her 11th Group One win, on their tails. Makfi had a nice position, with Christophe Soumillon getting plenty of cover, while Paco Boy was at the rear towards the far side.

Although Goldikova took the lead , she could not quite produce her trademark acceleration in the testing conditions. It was Makfi who had the turn of foot and he swept into the lead to put daylight between his two talented older rivals.


Delzangles was understandably thrilled to see Makfi returning to form in such sensational fashion.

"I'm delighted. I was a bit disappointed after Ascot but we knew he was sick so there was a reason for that," said the French trainer.

"The horse has proved again that he is a top miler. The ground doesn't bother him. He goes on any ground."

Delzangles suggested Makfi's next race is likely to be either the Prix du Moulin at Longchamp or the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes at Ascot.

After her defeat, Stan James pushed Goldikova out to 6/4 from 11/10 to win a third Breeders' Cup Mile.

In Germany, Campanologist landed his second Group One win of the season when ploughing through the mud in the hands of Adrie de Vries to land the Rheinland-Pokal at Cologne.

Frankie Dettori -- who had ridden the five-year-old to victory at Hamburg last month -- missed out when his flight to Dusseldorf was delayed and then he got caught up in a motorway tailback following a crash on the 25-mile taxi-ride to the course, which meant he never made it to Cologne.

Adrie de Vries was the man to benefit, picking up a winning spare ride aboard the 2/1 second favourite after his intended mount, last year's German Derby winner Wiener Walzer, was withdrawn due to the testing ground.

Irish Independent

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