Meandre (near) flies past Seville for victory in the Grand Prix de ParisPICTURE: scoopdyga.com
Magic Meandre gives Fabre 11th Grand Prix
Report: Longchamp, Thursday
Juddmonte Grand Prix de Paris (Group 1) 1m4f, 3yo
MEANDRE took a massive leap forward to beat both the Irish and French Derby winners as trainer Andre Fabre notched his 11th victory in the Group 1 Grand Prix de Paris.
Winner of his last two starts, Meandre's last success came in Listed company, but after initially appearing outpaced, Maxime Guyon's mount showed impressive acceleration in the final stages to run out a decisive winner.
On the back of the performance, bookmakers reacted by installing Meandre at prices ranging from 7-1 to 12-1 for the Qatar Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe, with Coral most impressed going the lowest price (from 40).
Much of the pre-race build-up centred on the clash between Prix du Jockey Club winner Reliable Man and Curragh Classic hero Treasure Beach, and although they did finish close together they had to settle for third and fourth respectively.
The reluctant to load Kreem was slowly away once the stalls opened, but otherwise it was a level break, with two of the three-strong Aidan O’Brien team, Seville and Treasure Beach, cutting out the running.
The pair were allowed to establish a lead of several lengths, with Seville setting a decent gallop up front. The rest of the field followed in Indian file, favourite Reliable Man one place behind Meandre in fourth.
The front pair engineered a sizeable gap and initially nothing emerged to threaten as Seville went clear of Treasure Beach, who could only find one pace when asked to quicken.
However, just as it appeared that Seville was going to go one better than his second in the Irish Derby, Meandre hit top gear, first flying past the fading Treasure Beach before dispatching Seville with equal ease to score.
Aidan O'Brien: pleased with duoPICTURE: Edward Whitaker
Seville claimed second with Treasure Beach nudged out of third by the never dangerous Reliable Man.
Fabre, who supplemented Meandre for the race, said: "He doesn't do so much in the mornings, but he does on the track and I thought he would run well."
O'Brien was pleased with the efforts of Seville and Treasure Beach and said: "They both ran very well. They had a tough race last time and Treasure Beach will have a break now, he's a solid horse. May be I ran him back a bit quick."
For Reliable Man, the quicker ground was cited asa possible reason for defeat as trainer Alain de Royer-Dupre said: "He lacked a bit of sparkle on this occasion and the ground was probably a bit too firm."