David Elsworth is hopeful Cocktail Queen will handle ground conditionsPICTURE: Martin Lynch
Elsworth out to sink Fabre Reservoirs hopes
Preview: France, Wednesday (1.50pm BST)
Deauville: Prix des Reservoirs - Haras d'Etreham (Group 3) 1m, 2yo fillies
PERSISTENT heavy ground in France may not be pleasing everyone but connections of Cocktail Queen (David Elsworth/Christophe Lemaire) are hoping that the Nottingham maiden winner might appreciate conditions.
"We anticipated soft ground which is why we've turned up," said Elsworth. "Motivator's [progeny] seem to go on that and I trained the mare who was by Selkirk. On the limited information of her pedigree and her good-to-soft win at Nottingham, we're hopeful rather than confident."
The key to the French form on offer is arguably to be found in the Prix Marcel Boussac, a race that only one of the six runners actually contested.
Meri Shika (Jehan Bertran de Balanda/Thierry Jarnet) could only finish sixth at Longchamp and is better judged on her close-up fourth behind Peace Burg in the Prix d'Aumale.
Milena's Dream (Yves de Nicolay/Olivier Peslier) finished just over a length behind Boussac runner-up Topaze Blanche at Saint-Cloud in September, a run which should entitle the daughter of Authorized to be a serious player at this level.
"She's really well and she looks great," reported De Nicolay. "There's really no way of knowing how she'll handle heavy ground but I'm hoping it's not too much of a problem."
However in terms of visual impression, she and the others may all have to go some to match Godolphin's Tasaday (Andre Fabre/Maxime Guyon), who brushed aside the challenge of Izola to make it two from two at Chantilly on soft ground earlier this month.
Izola had previously chased home the Boussac winner Silasol but proved no match for Tasaday, who was good for plenty more than the official two and a half length margin of victory after Guyon had applied the brakes late on.