Mickael Barzalona guides Godolphin's Victor Ludorum to victory in French 2000 Guineas
Sharmadal colt cruised from the back of the field to register his fourth win in five starts
Victor Ludorum bounced back from his defeat three weeks ago to carry the Godolphin silks to victory in the Group 1 Poule d'Essai des Poulains, the French 2000 Guineas, at Deauville on Monday.
Ridden by Mickael Barzalona, the Sharmadal colt cruised from the back of the field to register his fourth win in five starts and provide the Royal Blues their fifth Group 1 success for the year.
Victor Ludorum emulated his sire's achievement of 2005 and provided Andre Fabre his eighth French classic win, moving him ahead of Francois Mathet as the most successful trainer of the race in the modern era.
Robert Denman holds the all-time record with 11 wins, the last of which was in 1926.
Barzalona had Victor Ludorum settled at the rear of the nine-runner field before producing a powerful turn of foot against the near rail to win from The Summit and Alson.
“He's a powerful horse and today he showed that his comeback run did him the world of good,” Barzalona said.
“I was able to ride him the way I did at two. I didn't really drop him out, I just rode him for himself.
“He can be a little bit difficult during the preliminaries but he is so straightforward in a race. We went a good even pace and he was just in his racing bubble. He got there gradually and I never had to get serious.”
Lisa-Jane Graffard of Godolphin said: “We are delighted with the performance of Victor Ludorum, who left his comeback run in the Prix de Fontainebleau behind him and showed his best form.
“The Group 1 Prix du Jockey Club has always been Plan A for Victor Ludorum and we will see how he comes out of this race before confirming his next target.
“I am sure that Andre Fabre will want a chance to assess the horse over the coming days and discuss it with Sheikh Mohammed [bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai].”
Meanwhile, Dream And Do landed the Poule d'Essai des Pouliches, the French 1,000 Guineas, to give her trainer Frederic Rossi a first classic triumph.
The daughter of Siyouni, under Maxim Guyon, edged out Speak Of The Devil by a nose as the pair pulled clear of third-placed Mageva and Fabre’s Tropbeau in fourth.
At the same meeting, Deryan in the silks of Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed’s Yas Horse Racing Management, won the Group 1 President of the UAE Cup for the Purebred Arabians.
Ioritz Mendizabal was atop the five-year-old son of Mahabb trained by Didier Guillemin in France.
Updated: June 1, 2020 09:16 PM