Let’s Go to Longchamp! Three British Raiders Aim for Group-race Glory on Thursday

Three British raiders head over to France for the Group 1 card on Thursday July 14.Three British raiders head over to France for the Group 1 card on Thursday July 14.

British Raiders at Longchamp on Thursday

Longchamp hosts an excellent card on Thursday which features the Group 1 Grand Prix de Paris. Three British-based horses make the journey over to Longchamp with Group-race glory firmly in their sights, and we’ve identified the trio below, assessing their respective chances.


Grand Prix de Paris (Group 1, 1m4f, 7:50pm)

Eldar Eldarov (Roger Varian, David Egan) 7/2

A hefty £480,000 purchase at the Breeze Up sales last year, ELDAR ELDAROV has yet to taste defeat in three starts on the track, building on a Nottingham maiden win when landing a novice race at Newcastle in May.

Eldar Eldarov continued his upward curve when justifying favouritism to land the Queen’s Vase at Royal Ascot last month, getting up in the shadows of the post to deny the front-running Zechariah in a photo finish.

Connections reported afterwards that the ground was likely quick enough for Eldar Eldarov, so expect this softer surface to be to his liking, and he’s expected to follow a similar path to that of last year’s winner Hurricane Lane in that he’ll be taking this in prior to a tilt at the St Leger later in the season.

Given his obvious scope for improvement and the recent form of his stable, he must be strongly respected.

Recent Queen's Vase winner Eldar Eldarov bids for Group 1 glory in the Grand Prix de Paris on Thursday.

Recent Queen’s Vase winner Eldar Eldarov bids for Group 1 glory in the Grand Prix de Paris on Thursday.

El Bodegon (James Ferguson, Ioritz Mendizabal) 5/1

Newmarket-based trainer James Ferguson enjoyed success at last week’s July Festival with Bahrain Trophy winner Deauville Legend, and he hopes to keep this run going with stable star EL BODEGON in the Grand Prix de Paris.

Although stabled in Britain four of this colt’s seven starts have come in France, him providing James Ferguson with a maiden Group 1 win when landing the Criterium de Saint-Cloud last Autumn, holding off the challenge of Stone Age.

El Bodegon found good ground against him in the Dante on seasonal reappearance, yet the switch to a softer surface and return to France brought about an improved showing when he chased home Vadeni in the Prix du Jockey Club at Chantilly last time out, form which has obviously worked out well since.

Rider Ioritz Mendizabal now has form figures of 112 aboard this colt, and being a full brother to Best Solution, who produced all of his best form over this 1m4f trip, obviously bodes well for his ability to see out the distance.

El Bodegon bids for a second Group 1 victory in Thursday's Grand Prix de Paris.

El Bodegon bids for a second Group 1 victory in Thursday’s Grand Prix de Paris.


Prix Maurice de Nieuil (Group 2, 1m6f, 8:35pm)

Quickthorn (Hughie Morrison, Tom Marquand) 6/5

Hughie Morrison took the Group 2 Prix Maurice de Nieuil with Marmelo back in 2018, and he hopes for another successful trip to Longchamp in 2022 with QUICKTHORN.

This 5yo progressed out of handicaps to be a Group performer last season, and he built on a couple of seconds to the likes of Trueshan and Princess Zoe earlier this campaign to run out a ready winner of the Group 2 Henry II at Sandown last month.

Quickthorn made all of the running to score by just under 2l, and Tom Marquand keeps the partnership intact here. Although that Sandown success came over 2m, dropping back to 1m6f isn’t expected to pose Quickthorn any major problems, particularly if adopting his regular prominent racing tactics.

He is likely to go off a short price to land Thursday’s assignment.

Quickthorn heads to France for the Group 2 Prix Maurice de Nieuil on Thursday.

Quickthorn heads to France for the Group 2 Prix Maurice de Nieuil on Thursday.