Ganay Exam For Vadeni

Six months on from his near-miss in the G1 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, The Aga Khan’s Vadeni (Fr) (Churchill {Ire}) returns to ParisLongchamp on Sunday for what amounts to a stern test in the G1 Prix Ganay. Last year’s G1 Prix du Jockey Club and G1 Eclipse hero has a surprise awaiting him in James Wigan and Ballylinch Stud’s G1 Champion S. winner Bay Bridge (GB) (New Bay {GB}), who was impressive on his seasonal debut in 2022 when taking the G3 Brigadier Gerard S. Ballylinch Stud also have a significant involvement in Al Shaqab Racing’s high-class G1 Prix de l’Opera heroine Place Du Carrousel (Ire) (Lope De Vega {Ire}), while Haras de la Perelle and Stephane Wattel’s Simca Mille (Ire) (Tamayuz {GB}) and even Bertrand Milliere’s Iresine (Fr) (Manduro {Ger}) are hard to leave out of the picture with a run under their belts when first and second in the G2 Prix d’Harcourt here Apr. 9. That could be the way of things in 2023, with so many talented older horses remaining in training to provide reliable markers in these important contests.

Christophe Soumillon is well aware of the level of opposition to Vadeni. “He worked quite well on Tuesday, we all know the horse isn’t 100% fit and it is the first run of the season,” he said. “He’s going to have a tough season, for sure, we couldn’t believe the Ganay would be that strong. I have been doing this job for 25 years now and I haven’t seen a Ganay with so many group one horses. It’s like a strong Champion S. race. We’re not going to give him a hard race, as his targets are at Ascot and the Irish Champion and the Arc. We know he likes soft ground and even heavy and is very versatile.”

James Wigan said of Bay Bridge, who had been entered in the eventually-abandoned G3 Gordon Richards S. this week, “Sandown was our original thought, but then he would have carried a penalty for being a Group 1 winner after August, so being seven pounds worse off with Adayar (Ire) would have meant he would have a hard race at any rate, so we felt he might as well have a hard race in a group one as in a Group 3. There will be the usual pattern of races for him. I’m sure Sir Michael knows where he’ll want to go, but this is a good spot to begin.”

La Parisienne Returns

On a day of welcoming back, Peter Bradley’s G1 Prix de Diane runner-up La Parisienne (Fr) (Zarak {Fr}) who was also third in the G1 Prix Vermeille and disappointing in the Opera makes her seasonal bow in the card’s G3 Prix Allez France Longines. This is a chance to start anew for the talented 4-year-old, who is another prize ride for Soumillon who has taken France by storm so far this year.

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