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Epicuris and War clash in Prix Eugene Adam
Preview: France, Sunday
Maisons-Laffitte: Prix Eugene Adam (Group 2) 1m2f, 3yo
THIS race could provide a fascinating comparison of the form of the Investec Derby and the Prix du Jockey Club.
War Dispatch heads a trio of colts to have performed with credit behind impressive Chantilly winner New Bay, while Epicuris finished fifth behind Golden Horn at Epsom.
Criquette Head-Maarek said: "Epicuris ran very well in the Derby considering he was on the rail. If he had been on the outside they would have taken him into the race further and he could have been closer. But the form of the race looks good."
Head-Maarek is looking forward to the son of Rail Link dropping in trip by two furlongs but must hope further remedial work done by equine behavioural specialist Nicolas Blondeau has paid off - under French rules Epicuris must attempt to enter the stalls without his calming presence.
The Jean-Claude Rouget-trained War Dispatch finished three and a quarter lengths adrift of New Bay at Chantilly, a head in front of the reopposing Piment Rouge.
Rouget said: "This has been the plan since he was placed in the Jockey Club and everything has gone well."
Mostaneer finished sixth in the Jockey Club and has since chased home the progressive Almanaar over 1m1f in the Prix Daphnis.
Trainer Nicolas Clement said: "I think his best trip is 1,800 metres [1m1f] and he has remained in good form in the mornings. I hope there is a good pace because in the Jockey Club he was a bit keen in front."
There is plenty of British interest in the day's supporting Listed race, the EBF-backed Prix de la Pepiniere (3.45pm BST) over 1m2f.
Persona Grata grabbed some prize-money when second to Dream Child on the Deauville all-weather late last month.
Trainer Ed Walker said: "She's actually heavier now than when she went over to Deauville. I don't think she'd have beaten Dream Child but she would have been closer if she hadn't been drawn badly and stuck so wide."
Anthony Oppenheimer's This Is The Day will be a first runner in France for trainer Charlie Fellowes. Fellowes said: "She's run very well but at Nottingham and Newcastle she got stuck wide without any cover and went the long way round compared to the winners. She's tough and a mile and a quarter will be no problem. She has a good shout."