Godolphin trainer Saeed bin Suroor’s confidence and belief in Thunder Snow was rewarded when the three-year-old delivered a reminder of his sheer class when delivering a deserved G1 victory in Sunday’s Prix Jean Prat at Chantilly.
On a glorious weekend globally for Godolphin, in which James Cummings was swiftly off the mark with a winner with his first runner in the famous Royal Blue colours in Sydney, and Barney Roy finished an heroic second in Sandown (UK)’s G1 Coral-Eclipse, Thunder Snow stole the show in Paris.
Jockey Christophe Soumillon, who has been aboard the Helmet colt in all his important races, declared him a major contender for next year’s G1 Dubai World Cup at Meydan, which seems a logical target for this durable, much-travelled UAE Derby winner.
Soumillon said: “He is a horse who isn’t very big (physically), which makes him so versatile. He can handle a wide range of distances, and he is a horse for the World Cup.”
For Saeed bin Suroor, Thunder Snow’s second G1 victory — both have been in France — was vindication of the high regard in which he has always held the colt.
“He has improved with time, and he is a very relaxed horse. He always does whatever you want in the mornings and in his races. We’ll now look for a big G1 for him,” he added.
Saeed will weigh up the options of York’s G1 Juddmonte International and, later in the season, the G1 QEII at Ascot.
“Or, he could come back to France for the G1 Prix Jacques le Marois at Deauville. It depends on the ground. We will also have to see comes out of this race,” the trainer added.
Thunder Snow, who has raced in five countries this year, was travelling strongly at the end of the 1,600m (one mile) trip and comfortably held the well-regarded Trais Fluors, with Gold Luck back in third.
One of the most remarkable features of Thunder Snow’s profile is his adaptability. He has displayed equal prowess on turf and dirt surfaces.