Prix Jean Romanet Preview: German Royal to land French Group 1

One of the big races in France on Sunday is the Prix Jean Romanet
One of the big races in France on Sunday is the Prix Jean Romanet

Adam Brookes from Timeform previews one of Sunday's feature Group 1 races from Deauville and has recommended his best bet.

"Germany's Royal Solitaire arguably has the most solid profile..."

With Lady Aurelia looking very difficult to beat in the Prix Morny at Deauville on Sunday following her staggering performance in the Queen Mary at Royal Ascot, it makes more sense from a betting point of view to discuss the other Group 1 on the card, the Prix Jean Romanet for fillies and mares aged four and over.

The top rated for this race - run over a mile and a quarter - is Speedy Boarding whose connections may have had this contest in mind for her since she won the Group 2 Prix Corrida at Saint-Cloud in May. Speedy Boarding's owner (Izzi Top in 2012) and trainer (Ribbons in 2014) have both won this race in recent years and she could easily run well, but she should have done much better than finish last of five to Minding in the mile-and-a-quarter Pretty Polly Stakes at the Curragh when last seen in June.

Germany's Royal Solitaire looks more solid as she won her first three races this year (two listed events and a Group 2 at Baden-Baden) before improving again following a two-month break when finishing a half-length second to the Andre Fabre-trained older male Elliptique in the Group 1 Grosser Dallmayr Preis at Munich late last month. Royal Solitaire could even pull out more given she's not had much racing and is perhaps the one they all have to beat as she bids to become the first German horse to win this race since its inauguration in 2004.

Aside from Speedy Boarding, Britain is represented by stablemates Bateel and Carnachy. Carnachy beat Bateel when the pair finished first and second making their respective returns in a listed race at Goodwood in April, but Bateel has improved by 4 lb since, whereas Carnachy has only improved by 2 lb. What's more, Bateel looks capable of even better form following her ready win in a listed race at Newmarket last time (in June) when she wore a first-time hood, though she will be dropping back to 10 furlongs from 12 furlongs on Sunday.

Ireland are represented by the admirably tough and consistent Bocca Baciata who finished seven lengths ahead of Speedy Boarding when runner-up in the Pretty Polly. There's no doubt she was given an enterprising ride from the front that day, and there shouldn't be anywhere near that distance between them here, but she proved she's tactically versatile when coming from midfield to win the Group 2 Kilboy Estates Stakes over a furlong shorter at the Curragh last time. She's highly likely to be on the premises but may need a career-best effort to win.

France's best hopes on form are last month's course listed winner Ame Bleue and Prix Rothschild third Steip Amach (trained in Ireland until May but switched by her owner Jim Bolger to the David Smaga yard before her last two starts), but they are only narrowly ahead of Sayana who has a 'p' attached to her rating to signify potential for better. Sayana has a similar profile to Royal Solitaire as she also completed a hat-trick of wins (including a listed race) before finishing second on her most recent start, when chasing home the aptly-named Epsom Icon in the Group 3 Princess Elizabeth Stakes at Epsom in June. Sayana appeared to have quite a hard race that day, failing to handle the track and probably doing well to get as close as she did under the circumstances, but has been allowed 11 weeks to recover and could easily take another step forward here.

Sea Front isn't completely out of things on form but she's yet to race beyond a mile, while the final runner, Game Theory, won a listed race on soft ground at Le Lion-d'Angers in June but was only midfield in a similar race on much faster ground at Maisons-Laffitte last month.

In conclusion, Bateel and Speedy Boarding give Britain sound claims of winning this race for the fourth time in five years, but Germany's Royal Solitaire arguably has the most solid profile, and is the selection. The similarly progressive Sayana is another to bear in mind.

Recommended bet:

Back Royal Solitaire in the Prix Jean Romanet

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