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Sunday will see a hotly-contested €600,000 Prix du Haras du Fresnay-le-Buffard Jacques le Marois run at Deauville.
Many of Europe’s top milers will be among the 7 runners in the Group 1 in Normandy, with three of the field trained in Ireland.
Coronation Stakes winner at Royal Ascot, Alpine Star, trained by Jessica Harrington, who won the race in 2018 with Alpha Centauri, will be ridden by Stephane Pasquier, while the Aidan O’Brien-trained three-time Group 1 winner, Circus Maximus, will, like Harrington’s representative, carry the colours of race sponsors, the Niarchos Family.
Circus Maximus, narrowly beaten by Mohaather on his most recent run in the Sussex Stakes at Goodwood, will not have his regular jockey Ryan Moore in the saddle due to the 14-day quarantine period brought in last week for people travelling from France to Britain. Experienced top class rider Christophe Soumillon will replace Moore.
Ken Condon’s Romanised, winner of last year’s renewal of the race and who went on to show strong form during the second half of the 2019 season, will be ridden by Billy Lee, who will have to quarantine on his return to Ireland.
Persian King, trainer by French maestro, Andre Fabre, was a Classic winner over a mile in France last season, and won the Group 1 Prix d’Ispahan over a furlong further on his latest outing.
John Gosden and Frankie Dettori will be represented by Palace Pier, winner of the St. James’s Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot this year when beating last year’s European Champion 2-year-old Pinatubo.
Pretreville Progressive, who finished behind Persian King recently, will represent French handler Pascal Bary, while the Listed race-winning son of Frankel, Restiany, is the outsider of the field.
The winner of the Prix Jacques le Marois will receive an automatic fees-paid berth in the TVG Breeders’ Cup Mile at Keeneland in November.
This top class race has been won in the past by the likes of Dubai Millennium, Kingman, Dubawi, Manduro, Miesque and Goldikova.
The 2020 Prix du Haras du Fresnay-le-Buffard Jacques le Marois is live of Sky Sports Racing at 2.50pm.