Goken beats his European freshman sire peers to a first black-type winner
Livachope scores in the Prix La Fleche for the Haras de Colleville stallion
French-based freshman sire Goken sealed the fabulous start he has made with his early two-year-old runners on Sunday by becoming the first of his peers to supply a stakes winner.
The son of Kendargent, his studmate at Haras de Colleville, achieved the feat when daughter Livachope ran away with the Listed Prix La Fleche over five furlongs at Chantilly – the first black-type race for juveniles in Europe, in a Flat season delayed by the coronavirus pandemic.
Livachope, trained by Jane Soubagne for owner and breeder Alain Chopard, scored by a comfortable three quarters of a length from Pom Malpic, a Pomellato filly saddled by Andrew Hollinshead for Theresa Marnane.
Third home Winvalchope was, as the daughter of Kheleyf's name insinuates, also jointly bred by Chopard, a master at producing precocious two-year-olds and sprinters at his Haras des Faunes near Bordeaux in south-west France.
Livachope is the first foal out of Laia Chope, a daughter of former Haras des Faunes sire Soave who won once – in a five-furlong Longchamp claimer at two – and finished placed on another 11 occasions including when third in the Listed Criterium de Vitesse at Longchamp.
The dam, who has a yearling filly by another Faunes resident in Captain Chop, is a half-sister to three winners from the family of Prix du Bois scorer Cosachope and three-time Bunbury Cup hero Mine.
Goken is out on his own in the early stages of this year's first-season sire standings, with five individual winners to his name and progeny earnings in excess of £80,000.
It should be remembered, though, that he has had more opportunity than British and Irish-based freshmen as racing resumed from lockdown earlier in France than it did across the Channel.
Nevertheless, it has been a commendable start for Goken, a dual Group 3 winner in France who later joined Kevin Ryan, for whom he landed the Listed Golden Rose Stakes and ran a close third to Profitable in the King's Stand Stakes.
He stands at Haras de Colleville at a fee of €3,000 this year.