French Racing Tips: Philomene fancied in top-notch Prix de Diane

Chantilly action
It's Prix de Diane day at Chantilly, with top French and Irish fillies taking each other on

Patrick Weaver previews the Prix de Diane at Chantilly, which has attracted a first-class field...

"Aurelien Lemaitre jumped him out in front and after disputing the lead until halfway, he took it up and won by a comfortable three lengths. I liked his attitude that day and this is the right race for him."

There are two obvious races to look at when hoping to find the winner of the French Oaks - the Prix de Diane Longines at 15:00.

First and foremost, last month's Coolmore-sponsored Prix Saint-Alary over 10 furlongs on heavy, and secondly the French 1,000 Guineas.

The winner of this weekend's fillies' Classic will more than likely come from these two Group 1s as Aidan O'Brien's Joan Of Arc is the only foreign raider.

Philomene back over her best trip after Guineas flop

There was a three-way photo for the Saint-Alary - Incarville getting up late to nab Cirona and Es La Vida close home. The fourth, Sibila Spain was closing at the line, a length and a half behind. Rumi was sixth and Harajuko, seventh; both underperforming relative to their SP of 5/1.

The French 1,000 was won by the 38/1 outsider Coeursamba. She collared our 1,000 Guineas winner Mother Earth 100 yards out - Sweet Lady was fourth, a length ahead of the second favourite, Philomene.

Look beyond the two races and you soon tie yourself in knots. Incarville had previously come second at Saint-Cloud to Harajuku in May and to Philomene in April.

Having watched the video of the French 1,000 again yesterday, and looking at Philomene's breeding, I'm going to forgive her that defeat as she was dropping back from 10 to eight furlongs. She actually has a lot going for her, returning to a trip that requires stamina and again being ridden by Mickael Barzalona.

Incarville, which I like a lot, is being ridden for the first time by Gregory Benoist as Christophe Soumillon has been claimed for the Aga Khan's filly, Khalidiya which was a length behind Burgarita when the pair were the first two home in a 10-furlong maiden for unraced fillies in April.

Both won next time out, Burgarita's follow-up success coming in a trial for the Diane - hence her Sportsbook odds of 11/2. Kahilidiya is 10/1.

Breeding-wise they don't come much better than Joan Of Arc. She's by Gailileo out of a Group 2 winner than is the dam of three Group 1 winners. She was joined on the line and beaten a short head by Empress Josephine in the Irish 1,000 and she is rightfully among the market leaders.

I will go with Philomene to beat Incarville and Joan Of Arc.

This should be a breeze for Eagle

There are four Group 3s on the card, the first of them being the Prix de Moussac Longines at 13:05.

This should go to Breizh Eagle, which was three from three prior to his third to St Mark's Basilica and Colosseo in the French 2,000.

The handicapper has him 1lb ahead of Best Lightning and 8lb clear of the rest headed by Erasmo and Paco.

Given Breizh Eagle gave 4lb to Best Lightning and beat him a length at Longchamp in April, the Evens favourite on the Sportsbook looks a good thing and is my nap.

Solotov can follow up recent course success

Kevin Ryan sends Atomic Force over for the Prix du Bois Longines at 14:15. It is hard to see the Hamilton maiden winner having an impact in this Group 3 sprint but if you're not in it you can't win it.

Wesley Ward has booked Mickael Barzalona for his runner, Napa Spirit a winner at Keeneland on good going over five furlongs. Will he see out the extra furlong on softer ground? We'll find out but I prefer Solotov, a well-bought son of Invincible Spirit that bolted up on soft at Chantilly on his debut.

Aurelien Lemaitre jumped him out in front and after disputing the lead until halfway, he took it up and won by a comfortable three lengths.

I liked his attitude that day and this is the right race for him.

Sagamiyra chasing her sixth win in a row

The Prix Bertrand du Breuil Longines at 15:40 features a number of Listed winners and Jin Jin, a filly with a 4lb penalty for winning a Group 2 at Dusseldorf last time out.

She made all that day and kept on well to beat Godolphin's Alpen Rose two and a half lengths. The runner-up was rated 105 when with Charlie Appleby last year which would make Jin Jin around 110.

As Alpen Rose had previously been beaten a similar margin by Sagamiyra in a seven-furlong Listed at Longchamp on very soft, Jin Jin and Sagamiyra come out the equal of each other.

The best of the boys in the race is Pretreville. He escapes a penalty for his Group 3 success early last year, since when he has been taking on the likes of Palace Pier, Alpine Star and Circus Maximus in Group 1 contests.

The race is going to be won by one of these three. Don't waste time looking for something else. My common sense tells me to go with Pretreville but my heart is with Sagamiyra.

She is one of the most improved fillies in France. She was down the field at Lignieres on her debut last June, and has since won a maiden at lowly Niort, handicaps at Angers, Compiegne and Saint-Cloud, and the Listed contest at Longchamp. She's on a roll and Jin Jin and Pretreville might not stop her.

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