Horse Racing Tips

French Racing Tips: Hollie's chance to win her first Classic

Chantilly action
Chantilly's highlight this weekend is the Prix de Diane, which has attracted the Oaks third, Nashwa

''I would sooner back Zellie and Place du Carrousel than Fabre's other two - Agave and Babala.''

Patrick Weaver sizes up the five Group races at Chantilly, including the Prix de Diane...

There's nothing quite like winning a Classic race, and Hollie Doyle finds herself in the unusual situation of riding the favourite in one this Sunday.

The French Oaks at 15:00. is the feature on Sunday's card with Doyle on Nashwa, who was third to Tuesday and Emily Upjohn in the Oaks at Epsom.

That was over 12 furlongs but the furlong and a half shorter trip this weekend suits Nagwa better. Given luck in running, the daughter of Frankel should claim gold at 3.259/4 on the Sportsbook.

Ottilien's target but she must improve

Pulborough-based David Menuisier has had this race in mind for Ottilien since he first saw her.

Since then she has won here and at Saint-Cloud before her fourth to Sea Silk Road in a Goodwood Oaks trial. On her overall form you wouldn't expect her to be involved in the finish, but she has improved with each race.

Her odds of 19.018/1 do not tempt me, nor will I be backing Aidan O'Brien's runner Toy. The Cork maiden winner didn't make a favourable impression when 11th in the French 1,000 Guineas and I don't see the extra distance turning the stable's Cinderella into a princess.

The third, fourth and fifth in that Longchamp Classic all take part. Times Square, beaten in a three-way photo by Mangoustine and Cachet, is 17.016/1. Rosacea, who was finishing well, is 13.012/1 and Daisy Maisy who was also closing is 34.033/1.

Rosacea had previously beaten Daisy Maisy in the Prix de la Grotte over a mile, but with only a short head between them in the 1,000 Guineas Daisy Maisy looks good each-way value.

Zellie the only Group 1 winner in the Oaks

Andre Fabre's four runners include Zellie 10.09/1, winner of the Group 1 Prix Marcel Boussac over a mile at Longchamp last autumn.

Her fourth in the 1,000 Guineas at Newmarket behind Cachet, Prosperous Voyage and Tuesday is particularly good form, as is Place Du Carrousel's 17.016/1 second to Above The Curve in the Group 1 Prix Saint-Alary over 10 furlongs at Longchamp.

I would sooner back those two than Fabre's other two - Agave 6.511/2 and Babala 19.018/1.

Tribalist a likely winner for Godolphin

The first Group race of the day is the Prix Paul de Moussac Longines - a Group 3 for three-year-old colts over a mile.

Just four runners, all trained in France, with Godolphin's Tribalist sure to start favourite after his third in the French 2,000.

Amy Murphy runs her recent Dieppe winner Havana Angel in the Prix du Bois Longines at 13:40, a Group 3 sprint over six furlongs.

The grey had previously been placed at Catterick and Ripon where the two that beat her were the Royal Ascot winner The Ridler and Favourite Queen.

It's not that strong a race, and Ocean Cloud would have a squeak, too.

She won twice at Kempton in the spring when with Gay Kelleway before being caught in the final furlong by Absolutelyflawless at the Chester May meeting. The filly is now with Gianluca Bietolini.

There are no British or Irish runners or riders in the Prix Bertrand du Breuil at 16:20.

Surprising really as it is a Group 3 for milers aged four and over. The problem is that it clashes with Royal Ascot's Royal Hunt Cup and owners would sooner their horses ran in that.

The Prix du Lys Longines at 16:55 has also failed to attract any runners from across the Channel. The Group 3 for three-year-olds over 12 furlongs has race conditions similar to the King Edward VII Stakes at Ascot on Friday won by Changingoftheguard.

The only Listed winner in the line-up is Martel who beat Ardakan and Hafit in the Prix de l'Avre at Longchamp on his return this spring.

Garachico has been running well in Group company without looking like winning.

Others like Demarcay, Excelsior and Simca Mille have been faring well away from Paris. Their owners are hoping they can be competitive in this higher grade, but they will find Martel a tough nut to crack.

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