Pastorius out to show Champion credentials
Preview: Germany, Wednesday 3.35pm BST
Hoppegarten: Westminster Preis der Deutschen Einheit (Group 3) 3yo+, 1m2f
PASTORIUS (Mario Hofer/Adrie de Vries) goes on trial for the Qipco Champion Stakes in a Group 3 Preis der Deutschen Einheit that looks his for the taking at Hoppegarten, Berlin on Wednesday.
The son of Soldier Hollow followed up his German Derby success with a brilliant triumph in another Group 1 contest, the Bayerisches Zuchtrennen.
Pastorius then finished what, on the face of it, was a perfectly
respectable third, just a length behind the Arc winner, Danedream, in the Grosser Preis von Baden.
However, there is good reason to expect him to be able to improve on that performance now that he drops back in trip, as he drew alongside Danedream passing the furlong marker only to seemingly run out of stamina in the closing stages.
Wednesday's six opponents all need to improve on recent form if they are to match Pastorius. His most obvious danger is Russian Tango (Andreas Wohler/Eddie Pedroza) who is bidding to win this contest, run to mark the anniversary of German Reunification, for the third consecutive year.
But Russian Tango has failed to win in six starts since last year's
success and last time out beat just one home in a Baden-Baden Group 3 event.
Durban Thunder (Paul Harley/Robert Havlin) is, Pastorius apart, the only other Group 1 winner in the line-up. But he finished eight lengths behind Pastorius in the Bayerisches Zuchtrennen and has since run moderately at Baden-Baden.
French trainer Alex Pantall has been doing very well on his recent visits to Germany. But his candidate here, the well-bred Kingmambo filly, Violante (Fabrice Veron), is little more than a handicapper who finished fourth of six in Listed company last time out.
Wasimah (Hans-Jurgen Groschel/Wladimir Panov), who was awarded a Group 2 over this course and distance in May when the original winner was disqualified owing to a breach of the entry regulations, has run poorly on each of her three subsequent appearances.
The outbreak of swamp fever in Cologne means that the two declared runners based there - Lindenthaler and Technokrat - will not be allowed to take part.