By Gary Nutting, Horsetrader.net
Last year’s Arc-winning jockey Pierre-Charles Boudot has singled out Coolmore-owned Ocean Atlantique as the three-year-old he is most looking forward to riding next week.
The Andre Fabre-trained colt, by US Triple Crown and Breeders’ Cup Classic winner American Pharoah, is set to run in the Prix La Force at ParisLongchamp on Thursday.
That race had been mentioned as a possible target for Pascal Bary’s highly-regarded Ketil, who beat Ocean Atlantique on their debuts in an above-average maiden at Saint-Cloud in September.
Boudot said: “Ocean Atlantique impressed me that day in finishing second and he went back to Saint-Cloud to win a similar event by eight lengths in October.
“He’s a calm, athletic horse who has proved himself on both good and heavy ground. He’s open to plenty of improvement and I’m excited about what he might achieve this season.”
Skalleti, a five-year-old who has won the last nine of his 10 starts, including the Prix Dollar on Arc day and the following month’s Premio Roma – is another horse the dual French champion cannot wait to be reunited with this month.
He said of the Jerome Reynier-trained grey: “We still don’t know his limit and it’s quite possible he will improve again this year. He’s entered in the Prix D’Harcourt on Monday, but may go instead for the Prix Bertrand du Breuil at Chantilly a week later.”
Looking further ahead, Boudot is keen to see how last year’s French Guineas winner Persian King recovers from a long layoff following his second to Sottsass in the Jockey Club.
The colt, who beat subsequent 2000 Guineas winner Magna Grecia as a two-year-old in the Autumn Stakes at Newmarket, is back in work at Fabre’s yard, where the jockey has been riding out regularly during the coronavirus shutdown.
“I’m not aware of any particular targets right now but he remains a top-class prospect – a lovely, big horse with the scope to progress at four,” enthused Boudot, adding that his Coronation Stakes winner Watch Me (trained by Francis-Henri Graffard) would most likely have the Prix Jean Romanet at Deauville as a long-term aim.