Timeform's French SmartPlays: Saturday 16 May

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There is a cracking jumps card at Auteuil on Saturday
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Timeform select their three best bets at Auteuil on Saturday...

"...this progressive four-year-old has the potential to rate even higher..."

Timeform on Seduction

Ebonite - 13:35 Auteuil

This looks an up-to-scratch renewal of the Prix Murat Chase and it is Ebonite who is taken to come out on top. The six-year-old showed much improved form last season, winning her first two starts over this course and distance, before going on to finish second on her next three starts, notably in the Prix la Haye Jousselin over 27f at this course. That was her best effort to date on form, and she didn't need to be at her best to win the Prix Troytown Chase on her return to action in March, beating the reopposing Polly Grandchamp by four lengths. There could be even more to come from the upwardly-mobile Ebonite and she is preferred to the likely favourite Figuero.

Seduction - 14:45 Auteuil

Seduction didn't pull up any trees in four starts on the Flat, but she has since joined a leading jumps yard, and has proven much better suited to jumping obstacles. She started second favourite for her hurdling debut at Clairefontaine and duly prevailed from her bigger-priced stablemate. Seduction then improved further in defeat on her next start when finishing fourth in a Grade 3 event over this course and distance, before resuming winning ways on her chase debut at Fontainebleau after five months off in February. Seduction was impressive on her first try over fences that day, but the switch back to hurdles won't be a problem, and this progressive four-year-old has the potential to rate even higher. Katy Love is of a similar ilk and looks overpriced, also.

Royal Navy Warship - 15:15 Auteuil

Royal Navy Warship didn't live up to his smart pedigree on the Flat when trained by Aidan O'Brien, showing just a fairly useful level of form. However, he has showed more switched to jumping for a new yard, and has improved to win his last two starts over hurdles and fences, both at Fontainebleau. Royal Navy Warship has reacted well with the blinkers back on for the first time over jumps, battling well to see of an equally game rival last time. This race looks a little stronger, but Royal Navy Warship arrives on a roll and makes a fair bit of appeal in this field. Fellow last-time-out winner Voix du Soir still appears to be handily weighted and is taken to pose the biggest threat.

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