First Sitting follows familiar path to new destination for Wall and Mosse
Morocco Cup - La Coupe (Group 3) | 1m2f | 4yo+
La Coupe is among the many Group prizes to have gone on the road while France's flagship racecourse was closed for redevelopment but, despite the race moving forward a week in the calendar for its Longchamp return, Chris Wall has been able to plot the same build-up for First Sitting as in 2017, when he finished third here.
That has entailed a comeback outing in the Gordon Richards Stakes at Sandown followed by a win in the Listed Festival Stakes at Goodwood.
"Officially it wasn’t rated quite as highly as last year but I thought he won the race [at Goodwood] more comfortably this time round," said Wall. "He's in good form and is at least as good as he was last year. I would have thought in that sort of form he should be competitive in this race."
Twelve months ago First Sitting and regular pilot Gerald Mosse went down by two and a half lengths to Robin Of Navan and Garlingari when the race was run at Chantilly and you could certainly argue a repeat of that performance might be good enough against his nine rivals on Sunday, while his win at Deauville last August is the standout piece of form on offer.
"We didn’t think he had the hardest of races at Goodwood and since then he has been in good heart. On the basis that you should run them when they’re well, here we go," said Wall.
The ground at Longchamp had dried out to soft (3.7) on Saturday morning but there is a threat of thundery showers on Sunday.
Haggle cost Alain and Gerard Wertheimer €1.3 million last December and was entitled to need her first outing for Carlos Laffon-Parias when last of eight in the Prix Corrida at Saint-Cloud.
The same owners are also responsible for Spotify, whose trainer Christophe Ferland will be hoping the storms stay away, after the four-year-old's good early-season all-weather form was blunted in two defeats to Air Pilot on heavy ground.
Italy: Dettori on duty at San Siro
Frankie Dettori's last ride in the Oaks d'Italia (5.35 San Siro) failed to work out, as his mount Responsibleforlove – who was sent off the 6-5 favourite – came home tenth of 14 in 2016. The jockey last won the race in 1997 aboard Nicole Pharly.
The star rider will be hoping for better this time around. He partners Nathaniel filly Sladina, who won the Listed Premio Mario Incisa Della Rocchetta last time out. She runs in the same colours as Folega, who won the race last year.
The race has produced plenty of equine brilliance, including with subsequent King George and Arc winner Danedream in 2011.
Zomaradah, the dam of super sire Dubawi as well as Emirates Queen and UAE King, was victorious in 1998.
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