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rest of Longchamp card preview

Plenty more action at Longchamp today, here's a look at the rest of the action, courtesy of Edward Hewitt, @luckypunts. 2yo features still to come from another source...

Qatar Grand Handicap de Longchamp

The day’s racing gets underway with the Grand Handicap, a traditionally sticky race that once again looks difficult for punters. In such a contest it would normally be sensible to look for course and distance winners, especially at Longchamp where previous winners perform particularly well, but this race throws up 8 runners with previous course winners, four of whom did so at this distance. Money is likely to come for the experienced Roatan, particularly with the booking of Christophe Lemaire, who looked back to form at his last outing, but slight preference is for AMIRANT who may well be the most progressive of the lot and who has looked equally adept on both good and soft ground. Al Nejma represents an obvious danger after his course win last month, but this could represent a step too far.

Qatar Prix de L’Abbaye de Longchamp

A tricky renewal where the ground may be of significant importance and it looks as though soft conditions may rule several of the main contenders out. Swiss Spirit and Sole Power both look unsuited to conditions and things may have fallen just right for SPIRIT QUARTZ. Short sprints with large fields are never races that I like to get stuck into, but 7/1 is too big of a price for a reliable horse in a race that likes a standout favourite. Mayson deserves favouritism on the back of the July Cup performance, but his best form has been at 6 furlongs and this shorter trip may not suit.

Prix de l’Opera

Galikova is certain to prove popular Freddy Head’s charge has every chance if reproducing her form from 2011, but that is a rather big if. IZZI TOP has form on soft ground and the rain may have come at just the right time. The impressive second at Deauville shows that the disappointment at Goodwood was more of a blip rather than a change in fortunes and another good run can be expected. Giofra finished behind Izzi Top at Deauville and, whilst it is difficult to see how she can reverse that form, her previous course success means that she cannot be completely ruled out if she is anywhere near top form.

Qatar Arabian World Cup Sponsorisee Par Qatar Petroleum

If you can stay away from betting on one race this Sunday, this should be it. There’s very little to guide punters going into this and it is a race where nearly the entire field appears to have a chance. Tabarak is seeking a hat-trick and is currently favourite for the race, but I’m siding with Al MAMUN MONLAU who has placed behind the favourite on his last two outings, notably only by a neck back in June. The ground was softer at that outing and represents a better form guide than the larger margin of victory only a couple of weeks later.

Qatar Prix de la Foret

A race that sees get another run, but it is difficult to see Starspangledbanner reproducing old form and getting a head in front. There is plenty of quality in the race, but the most progressive could well be MASHOORA, who has looked encouraging so far and was unlucky to come up against the likes of Golden Lilac and Elusive Kate last time out. She is in with every chance and her current price (trading at around 6’s) is simply too big. Gordon Lord Byron will be suited by the ground and is in with every chance as does Penitent, but there should be questions as to how the latter will handle the trip.

Qatar Prix du Cadran

A fascinating race where once again the softer ground will prove crucial. Kasbah Bliss was impressive when winning last year, but hasn’t been on top form this season and is unlikely to reproduce on soft ground, but the answer may well be Saddler’s Rock. Once again there are slight ground concerns and his last two outings have been below par, but on his best form his is better than the rest. Colour Vision was extremely disappointing last time out, but it is hard to rule out the Ascot Gold Cup winner. There is, however, one runner perfectly suited by conditions and that is NIKITA DU BERLAIS. Ground and stamina will not be an issue, but making the transition to flat racing against horses of this quality is far from ideal.

And from the Yorkshireman, @jjmsports, here's a quick look at the 2yo races:

The Prix Marcel Boussac is the fillies chance to strut their stuff, and their coats will no doubt be glistening off the crisp turf, hopefully the British invasion of France continues with AGENT ALLISON and PURR ALONG going for us, Purr Along is the obvious stand out with her second behind Certify franked by Godolphin’s star filly winning The Fillies Mile at HQ last week. Agent Allison is another who was second behind a superstar when behind Newfangled at Royal Ascot. By Dutch Art, and out of a Diktat mare, I’m hopefully she will handle the conditions well.

In The Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere, I cannot have the Ballydoyle two, even though they have a good record in the race and in particular on Arc Day. George Vancouver and Pedro the Great, are both out of Henrythenavigator won six of his ten starts on turf, but the two runs on soft he faltered, and being American bred, I don’t like his kiddies running on the wet stuff. I don’t like Olympic Glory, and generally avoid the Hannon and Hughes horses. The two I like are WHAT A NAME, who is a group three winner already in France, and Tha’ir for Godolphin. What a Name although a Mr Greeley colt, ran well on his maiden on soft, finishing a good third of nine at Deauville when very soft. THA’IR won at Ascot when the ground had plenty of juice, and he has good form in behind the likes of Toronado, Steeler and Dundonnell.

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