Pacemaker Wren’s Day came home second, with Cloth Of Stars third, in the G1 Prix Ganay over the extended 10 furlongs at Longchamp, France, on Sunday, 29 April.
The two Godolphin runners, both trained by Andre Fabre, were no match for Cracksman, who won by four lengths in 2m 9.44s on good ground.
Wren’s Day, partnered by Pierre-Charles Boudot, led the field of seven at a good pace and was kicked for home entering the straight.
The four-year-old Medaglio d’Oro colt, making his seasonal debut, was passed by Cracksman with a furlong remaining but kept on to finish three quarters of a length ahead of Cloth Of Stars with Mickael Barzalona up.
Five-year-old Cloth Of Stars was held up last initially and then pulled himself into sixth place on the inside.
He had no room to make progress at the top of the straight, but the cutaway two furlongs out enabled him to run on and take third.
Lisa-Jane Graffard of Godolphin reported: “That was a bit of a head-scratcher.
“Wren’s Day was ridden with aggression and Pierre-Charles thought he might win the race in the straight.
“The colt normally leads Talismanic and Cloth Of Stars in their work, but might get a promotion now. He looks another string to our bow.
“We were happy with Cloth Of Stars – he is probably best over 12 furlongs with a fast pace, was a bit keen and not able to make progress at a crucial stage, but we don’t want to make excuses.
“Cracksman was very impressive.”
Cracksman (foaled 9 April 2014) is a British Thoroughbred racehorse. He showed promise when winning his only race as a two-year-old in 2016 before developing into a top class middle distance performer in the following year. As a three-year-old he won the Investec Derby Trial before running third when favourite for the 2017 Epsom Derby and then finishing runner up in the Irish Derby. He went on to win the Great Voltigeur Stakes and Prix Niel before recording an emphatic success in the Champion Stakes. He ended the year as the top-rated three-year-old in the world.
Cracksman is a bay colt bred in England by his owner Anthony Oppenheimer’s Hascombe and Valiant Studs. He was sent into training with John Gosden at Newmarket, Suffolk.
Cracksman is from the first crop of foals sired by Frankel. His dam Rhadegunda showed good form on the track winning three races including the Listed Prix Solitude, and has had some success as a broodmare, producing the Solario Stakes winner Fantastic Moon. She was a granddaughter of the Oppenheimer family’s 1000 Guineas winner On the House. Other descendants of On the House’s grand-dam Courtessa have included Golden Horn, Rebecca Sharp, Habibti and the Australian champions Danewin and Octagonal.
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