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Thursday, 15 November, 2018

Five things to note at Deauville's last big Sunday of the summer

Cracksman (left) is the one to beat in the Arc at 7-1 as the market looks to have overlooked him
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Salouen sets the standard in Grand Prix

Sylvester Kirk cannot be accused of taking the easy route with Salouen, whose last three starts have been in the Coronation Cup, Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud and King George.

Hiran Balasuriya's colt has earned just shy of £200,000 in those three outings, and faces six rivals in the Group 2 Lucien Barriere Grand Prix de Deauville (3.55).

"He's been competing at the very top level and it's the best opportunity he's had, as long as the ground doesn't go heavy," said Kirk. "He's in great form and I'm looking forward to it. There are some nice horses in there and none of these races are easy."

Last year's winner Tiberian came back to form when chasing home Finche in the Prix de Reux last time. 

"Olivier [Peslier] wasn't hard on him and I think he's come on for that run," reported trainer Alain Couetil, who took Tiberian to Melbourne and Hong Kong last autumn and who could be on his travels once again. 

Appleby out to plunder more riches

Charlie Appleby has enjoyed a stellar Deauville, saddling five winners from 11 runners, all at Listed level or higher. 

The only three-year-old in the Grand Prix line-up, Loxley returns to the scene of his success in the Prix Nureyev over ten furlongs. 

Loxley finished second to Wells Farhh Go in the Bahrain Trophy

Appleby said: "He goes into the race in good order and this is a step up again for him to Group 2 company. He ran well at Newmarket in the Bahrain Trophy over a mile and five furlongs so is pretty versatile as regards to distance."

Stablemate Salsabeel was having his first start since January when turned over at odds-on in a Haydock conditions race and should be more at home in the Prix Quincey Barriere (3.15).

The Appleby raiding party is completed by D'Bai, who looks one of the leading candidates in the Prix de Meautry Barriere (2.45) on the evidence of his sixth-placed effort here in the Prix Maurice de Gheest three weeks ago.

Delcher Sanchez double-handed in Meautry

Mauricio Delcher Sanchez is doubly represented in the Prix de Meautry Barriere (2.45), with Finsbury Square making his first start since finishing a fine fourth in the King's Stand at Ascot, and Coeur De Beaute – a winner here over seven furlongs in the Prix Imprudence – dropping in class after contesting the Maurice de Gheest.

"With Finsbury Square, we waited on the weather before choosing Deauville over the Nunthorpe at York, where ultimately they didn't get any rain," said the trainer. "He's in good form and this represents maybe a more prudent choice.

Finsbury Square (extreme right of picture) finished a fine fourth in the King's Stand at Ascot behind Blue Point

"The track was too fast for Coeur De Beaute last time, while it was also her first start back at sprinting distances after running in the Poule d'Essai and Coronation Stakes. She should have things more in her favour this time."

Dunlop relies on Irish and Robin

Harry Dunlop has already taken home one major prize this month courtesy of Knight To Behold, who accounted for French Derby winner Study Of Man in the Prix Guillaume d'Ornano. 

Two more stable stars make the trip from Lambourn, with Fighting Irish an interesting contender in the Meautry having been balloted out of the Maurice de Gheest. 

Fighting Irish with Cristian Demuro, Christina Dunlop and owner Anoj Don after winning G2 Criterium de Maisons-Laffitte

A Group 2 winner in France as a juvenile last autumn, he was far from disgraced in the Commonwealth Cup.

Up against eight rivals in the Prix Quincey Barriere, Robin Of Navan has not been seen since April but, speaking in Deauville on Saturday, assistant trainer Christina Dunlop reported both horses in rude health.

"They both had a canter on the all-weather this morning and Harry is very hopeful of a good run from them," she said.

"Robin Of Navan had three quick runs in the spring and so he's had a break. His form suggests he tends to come good in the spring and autumn." 

Gavin Hernon a name to remember

Cork-born but Chantilly-based Gavin Hernon made the perfect start to his training career last Saturday when sending Icefinger out to score on debut at Deauville. 

Eight days later Repercussion – who the owners recently relocated to France from Charlie Fellowes – becomes the yard's first Group race runner in the Prix Quincey Barriere (3.15) over a mile. 

"We entered Repercussion more in hope than anything but the race has really cut up," said Hernon, whose experience includes stints with Andre Fabre and Nicolas Clement, as well as representing Goffs in France.

Gavin Hernon is interviewed after his maiden winner as a trainer at Deauville

"The reason we brought him over is because he was pulling really hard in big handicaps in Britain. He has bags of pace and stays the mile really well, so if he can settle he could be effective from the front here.

"If Emmaus of Roger Varian's runs back to form he's definitely the one to beat, but we live in hope."

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We waited on the weather before choosing Deauville over the Nunthorpe at York, where ultimately they didn't get any rain
E.W. Terms
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