Senga Senga prevails in the Prix de Diane

Filed on 19 Jun 2017 @ 12:37

Well beaten in the French 1000 Guineas, outsider Senga (Blame) took the Prix de Diane Longines by storm on Sunday at Chantilly, beating favoured Sistercharlie and Godikova's own Terrakova, for Niarchos family and trainer Pascal Bary.

The Niarchos family homebred filly moved early in the straight and never seemed really threatened to win by a good length in front of Sistercharlie (Myboycharlie), a good finisher after a troubled last straight, just edging a brave Terrakova (Galileo) by a nose only.

The trainer of Senga, Pascal Bary wanted to pay tribute to his filly's outstanding abilities and her connections for having shared his conviction that Senga would stay the 2,100 meters of the Prix de Diane Longines (Gr1). Winner of the Prix de la Grotte (Gr3), as a springboard to the Abu Dhabi Poule d'Essai des Pouliches (Gr1) where she was going to fail, the Blame filly had finished third in the Prix de Sandringham Prize (Gr3) over a mile only two weeks prior to the French Oaks.

Senga was bred by Flaxman Stables Ireland Ltd for the Niarchos family, who scores for the 4th time in that French classic after Northern Trick (1984), East of the Moon (1994) and Divine Proportions (2005). Senga is out of Beta Leo (A P Indy), first daughter of the champion Denebola (Storm Cat), winner of the Prix Marcel Boussac (Gr1) for the same connections. Denebola is herself out of the great Coup de Génie (Mr Prospector), winner of the Prix Morny (Gr1) and the Prix de la Salamandre (Gr1). It is one of the most beautiful families of the world turf, and an impeccable dam line once again at the top of the charts.

Senga's sire, Blame (Arch), made history by ending Zenyatta (Street Cry)'s invicinbility, twenty times winner before being beaten for the first time time in the Breeders'Cup Classic (Gr1) 2010.

The fourth and fifth places of the Prix de Diane Longines (Gr1) returned to the favorite Shutter Speed ​​(Dansili), which did not really accelerate at the end of the race, perhaps due to lack of stamina, and an astonishing Turf Laurel (Footstepsinthesand), who came from nowhere take that 5th place.

Ballydoyle's Rhododendron (Galileo) was pukled up halfway through while Onthemoonagain (Cape Cross) fell one furlong out as her rider Christophe Soumillon was looking for an openining. Everyone was able to go back to the stables and weighing room even though the Belgian champion jockey gave up his reminaing rides. Ridden by Maryline Eon, first female jockey at the start of the Prix de Diane Longines, Yellow Storm (Tiberius Caesar) finished eighth.

Ice Breeze (Nayef) once again beat Shakeel (Dalakhani) and Falcon Wings (Nathaniel) in a hot renewal of the Prix Hocquart Longines (Gr2), just as he’d done on May 23 in Saint-Cloud over 1m4f in the Prix du Lys (Gr3) won by Called to the Bar, absent this time.

Bred by his owner, Khaled Abdullah, and trained by Pascal Bary, Ice Breeze took his time to make his move after the last bend and he took over Shakeel near the post, though cosily enough. Falcon Wings had led the way and even though he seemed a moment outpaced entering the last straight as Shakeel was driven to the fore by Soumillon, but then he recovered and never let go to recapture third place.

The winner is a full brother to Snow Sky (Nayef), winner of the Hardwicke Stakes (Gr2)at Royal Ascot. Their dam Winter Silence (Dansili) had won once before entering stud. She is herself a sister to Polish Summer (Polish Precedent), winner of the Sheema Classic (Gr1) in Dubai after having taken the Prix Exbury (Gr3).

Both trained by Jean-Claude Rouget, Taareef (Kitten’s Joy) and Zelzal (Sea the Stars) filled the exacta in the Prix Bertrand du Breuil Longines (Gr3), over one mile. Both were coming back after 9 to 10 months out. Yet they used different tactics as the winner, although giving 4 pounds to the field, quickly settled behind a keen Black Max (Fuissé), and made the difference early in the straight. The second however was held last and finished well to take over the brave Siyoushake (Siyouni) for 2nd place in the last 50 yards or so.

Taareef was bought as a yearling for $ 675,000 at Keeneland by its owner Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum’s Shadwell Estate. His sire Kitten's Joy was one of the best turf horses in the United States before entering stud. Taareef had failed in the French 2,000 Guineas (Gr1) last year but he finished his sophomore season with a convincing victory in the Prix Daniel Wildenstein (Gr2), which earned him extra weight here. He had been part of the horses threatened by a sudden epidemic in the stable of Jean-Claude Rouget but spared, he had, like Zelzal, been able to work as much as needed to perform here.

Filed on 19 Jun 2017 @ 12:37