Laurent Barbarin's French Classics horses to follow

The final of a three-part series looking at potential French Classic performers sees Laurent Barbarin put forward another 11 horses, most of whom won’t be as well known.

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There are still many three years olds that we haven’t been able to see on the track, who could be aimed at the big races this spring. However, to take guesswork out of the equation, below is a list of horses that have already run and won.

This follows on from this week's two other pieces, where I discussed potential French Classic prospects. If you missed those, part one can be seen here and part two here.

Of the horses below, it may be worth taking note of them as most of these are likely to race this coming week with French racing getting the go ahead to resume

3yo bay filly; Lope De Vega (IRE) - Samadrisa (IRE) (Oasis Dream) (GB)
Trained by Jean-Claude Rouget

Simeen has been taken out of the Prix de La Grotte as Jean-Claude Rouget thinks the race may be too hard for a comeback after such a long layoff. She is well-regarded by her handler and was rather impressive when she scored at Clairefontaine last year.

She still seems to have a long way to go but is bred to succeed at the highest level. Definitely one to keep an eye on.

3yo bay colt; Raven's Pass (USA) - Painting (IRE) (Peintre Celebre) (USA)
Trained by Fabrice Chappet

After being pulled-up in his first start, Pisanello has won his next two outings in hard-fought finishes but that could just be the sort of horse he is.

He stepped up nicely to Listed level at Saint-Cloud in early March to score in the Prix Omnium II, a race won by Shaman last year. It is important to note that both of Pisanello’s victories have come in very heavy ground.

He is amongst the eight runners in the Fontainebleau on Monday but whether is he good enough to take on opponents of Victor Ludorum’s calibre, I am not sure.

3yo bay colt; Wootton Bassett (GB) (9.4f) - Acola (FR) (Acatenango) (GER)
Trained by Henri-Alex Pantall

Narrowly defeated by Pisanello in the Prix Omnium II at Saint-Cloud last March, The Summit had previously shown nice potential in 2019 when finishing a close third in the Group 3 Prix de Condé over 9f at Chantilly.

Having worked for Alex Pantall a few years ago (a long time ago now!), I can easily predict that the horse will be fit and ready when he returns on Monday.

3yo bay colt; Siyouni (FR) - Burma Sea (FR) (Lope De Vega) (IRE)
Trained by Freddy Head

Devil impressed when he won his maiden start at Deauville last summer but was subsequently last of eight in the Prix Morny, a race that probably came too soon after his first run.

He ended 2019 with a close defeat to Shadn in the Group 2 Criterium de Maisons-Laffitte and returns this Monday in the Prix de Fontainebleau.

He will have to improve significantly to be a Group 1 horse but like all of Freddy Head’s runners, will he at the top of his game as soon as this Monday? Caution is required.

3yo bay filly; Siyouni (FR) - Venetias Dream (IRE) (Librettist) (USA)
Trained by Frédéric Rossi

Dream And Do was a good second in what seems to be a good maiden on debut at Deauville last year. She went on to win at Marseille before taking consecutively a Class 2 and a Group 3 over 7f at Maisons-Laffitte.

She has untapped potential and should be an interesting contender in the Prix de La Grotte on Monday.

3yo bay colt; Areion (GER) - Assisi (GER) (Galileo) (IRE)
Trained by Andre Fabre (winter trainer switch from Jean-Pierre Carvalho)

Alson enjoyed a fruitful 2019 campaign, finishing second to Victor Ludorum in the Jean-Luc Lagardère before taking the Group 1 Criterium International by a massive 20 lengths ahead of his only opponent Armory.

Alson has since been transferred to André Fabre’s powerful stable, who has more than 200 horses in training. He is due to go straight for the French Guineas as his new trainer said in the press lately that the horse took time to adapt to his new environment, the sort of comment that doesn’t boost my confidence.

However, judged on what he has achieved last year, he is another one that will be kept on the map.

3yo bay colt; Makfi (GB) - Fancy Green (FR) (Muhtathir) (GB)
Trained by Mme Pia Brandt

Mkfancy won the Group 1 Criterium de Saint-Cloud last year (a race won by Waldgeist in 2016) on his third outing.

He made a good return to action when second to Waltham (who has since been exported to Hong-Kong) on the fibersand at Chantilly in March and is a legitimate contender for the French Derby.

Although he may be better suited by a mile and half further into the season, he is definitely a horse that should be interesting to follow in the big races.

3yo chestnut colt; Galiway (GB) - Kendam (FR) (Kendargent) (FR)
Trained by Frédéric Rossi

Kenway has always been held in high esteem by Frédéric Rossi. He won the Group 3 Prix de La Rochette last September before flopping in his next two starts in heavy ground, which were the Jean-Luc Lagardère last October and the Listed Prix Omnium II last March.

If the ground is good on Monday, he could be a potential threat in the Prix de Fontainebleau, but if the surface is on the soft side, it will make his task tougher.

3yo chestnut filly; Sea The Stars (IRE) - Garmoosha (USA) (Kingmambo) (USA)
Trained by Jean-Claude Rouget

Raabihah was one of the nicest winners at Cagnes Sur Mer last winter. The daughter of Sea The Stars scored first time out by three lengths and although it was on fibresand and against a modest bunch of opponents, she looked above average and is entered in the Prix Vanteaux next Thursday.

It’s a step up in class, but this is exactly where you’d want to have her as a Jean-Claude Rouget-trained horse.

She needs to improve, but I can’t wait to see her in action on turf!

3yo bay filly; Soldier Hollow (GB) - Exotic Rose (GER) (Manduro) (GER)
Trained by Francis-Henri Graffard

A successful import from Germany for Francis Graffard, Emoji caught the attention when she made all to win by two lengths the Listed Prix La Camargo at Saint-Cloud in March on what was her second start.

A race contested over a mile in testing condition, this event (won by subsequent French Oaks winner La Cressonniere in 2016) is the first official prep-contest that can lead to the Prix de Diane.

It is no surprise then to see Emoji entered in the Prix Vanteaux next Thursday at ParisLongchamp and I’m really looking forward to seeing her on a good or good to soft turf.

She could be anything at this stage.

3yo chestnut colt; Pivotal (GB) - Distortion (GB) (Distorted Humor) (USA)
Trained by Carlos Laffon-Parias

This son of Pivotal found himself placed between two subsequent Group 1 winners on their respective debuts at ParisLongchamp on September 1st last year. Well beaten by Victor Ludorum that day, he still finished 1¾ lengths ahead of Mkfancy though.

A comfortable winner of his maiden on re-entry at Fontainebleau early this year, he is entered in the Prix La Force next Thursday at ParisLongchamp, in a Class 2 at Lyon the following day but also holds entries in the Poule d’Essai des Poulains and The Prix du Jockey-Club.

Laurent Barbarin's French Classics horses to follow
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