The autumn at Auteuil this year is like no other since it combines two classic programs into one, leading to the Grand Steeple-Chase de Paris (Gr1) rescheduled this year on October 18, and its usual Autumn counterpart, the La Haye Jousselin Chaser (Gr1), which will take place this time on November 29, slightly is later than usual.
The Ingré Chase (Gr3), which will be contested this year not in April-May but on Tuesday, September 22, is the first step leading to this postponed Grand Steeple …
Some of the top chasers around are in, some of whom went to Compiègne at the start of the Summer … Now we are starting over!
- 1. CARRIACOU (g8, FRA by Califet ex Medanik, by Medaaly) Weight: 11st / Rating: 184lbs
Trained in Maisons-Laffitte by Isabelle Pacault, he’s the 2019 Grand Steeple-Chase de Paris (Gr1) winner. Third then in the La Haye Jousselin Chase (Gr1), he was 5th for his comeback last Spring over hurdles at Auteuil and was very brave under 11st 3lbs in the Murat Chase (Gr2) before finishing 3rd under 11st in the Héros XII Chase (Gr3) at Compiègne.
- 2. FIGUERO (5g, FRA by Yeats ex Annaland, by Saint des Saints) Weight: 10st 10lbs / Rating: 168lbs
Trained near Royan by François Nicolle, he won the Maurice Gillois 4yo Chase (Gr1) last year. He confirmed that he belonged with the best chasers all-around this season when winning over hurdles against older horsesbut he was well beaten afterwards when 4th in the Murat Chase (Gr2). He will probably have improved on that.
- 3. ROXINELA (f7, FRA by Muhtathir ex Grivette, by Antarctique) Weight: 10st 8lbs / Rating: 163lbs
Trained at Chantilly by François-Marie Cottin, placed in about every turn last season, she finished 2019 with a bang in the Georges Courtois Chase (Gr2). After a pleasing comeback in the Murat Chase (Gr2), showing again how brave she was, she won another top-flight chase in the Drags Chase (Gr2), last July. Brave as ever, she finished 3rd again last time out over hurdles despite a mistake at the last.
- 4. EBONITE (f6, FRA by Khalkevi ex Tamise, by Sleeping Car) Weight: 10st 8lbs / Rating: 170lbs
Trained in the centre of France by Emmanuel Clayeux, she fully revealed herself last year at 5. Either first or second in every race, she was beaten by the only Bipolaire in the La Haye Jousselin Chase (Gr1), and won for her seasonal comeback this year, beating Poly Grandchamp in the Troytown Chase (Gr3), then in the Murat Chase (Gr2), beating Feu Follet, Carriacou, Figuero and Roxinela …
- 5. ENJEU D’ARTHEL (g6, FRA by Saddler Maker ex Olga d’Arthel, by Brier Creek) Weight: 10st 8lbs / Rating: 148lbs
Trained in the centre of France by Emmanuel Clayeux, here’s the winner of the 2019 Fondeur 5yo Chase (L). He finished 2nd for his comeback in the Robert de Clermont-Tonnerre Chase (Gr3) behind Poly Grandchamp, then led most of the Léon Rambaud Hurdle race (Gr2) but was pulled up after that in the Héros XII Chase at Compiègne. He was 5th last time ouyt to Device for his seasonal return to Auteuil over hurdles.
- 6. DEVICE (g8, FRA by Poliglote ex Westonne, by Mansonnien) Weight: 10st 6lbs / Rating: 161lbs
Trained in Royan by Guillaume Macaire, he was one of the very best hurdlers of his generation at Auteuil. Converted to chasing in April 2018, out 2 years after that, he won his last three races now and looked fully in command for his comeback, over hurdles, last time out beating Roxinela and Enjeu d’Arthel. This is his first Group race chasing.
- 7. SRELIGHONN (g7, FRA by Martaline ex Eliga, by Turgeon) Weight: 10st 6lbs / Rating: 174lbs
Trained near Royan by François Nicolle, winner of the Ferdinand Dufaure 4yo Chase (Gr1) in 2017, but beaten later that season, he nevertheless won the Troytown Chase (Gr3) for his first race against older horses and again in the Georges Courtois Chase (Gr2) before his Winter break. Switched to Hurdles last year, he ran only three times, once in the Spring, and was pulled up for his comeback this season. Yet he ran one of his best races immediately after that when 2nd in the William Head Chase (L) at Compiègne, and confirmed with another 2nd place in the Héros XII Chase (Gr3) on the same course and distance. The 3rd favourite in the Drags Chase (Gr2) in July, he ran off course after breaking a rein at the rail-ditch-and-fence.
- 8. FEU FOLLET (g5, FRA by Kapgarde ex Folle de Toi, by Sageburg) Weight: 10st 1lb / Rating: 161lbs
Trained in Royan by Guillaume Macaire, he was the best hurdler of his generation back in the Spring of 2019. He won the Alain du Breil 4yo Hurdle Race (Gr1) the and was switched to chasing after that. He has already won twice over the bigger obstacles at 3 and was placed again a few times but was pulled up on every occasion he tackled the very best chasers last term, chasing as well as hurdling. He won very easily for his chasing return this season at Compiègne in March, and was convincing again when 2nd in the Murat Chase (Gr2) at Auteuil. 4th at Compiègne in the Héros XII Chase (Gr3) then, he hasn’t run since.
- 9. FOU DÉLICE (g5, FRA by Poliglote ex Gladice, by Cadoudal) Weight: 10st 1lb / Rating: 137lbs
Trained near Royan by François Nicolle, he’s in his 3rd chasing Group race here but already won twice chasing the last term. As for now, he hasn’t been convincing at this level even though he was a fouvrite 3rd in the French National in May under 10-3.