A major stage in the spring chasing season, the Murat Chase (Gr2) also becomes the only one this year on the way to the Grand Steeple-Chase de Paris (Gr1) due to the coronavirus outbreak and the lockdown on racing that was enforced from March to May.
The Grand Steeple-Chase de Paris (Gr1) will indeed be held on June 7 and the Murat Chase run three weeks earlier whereas it usually takes place at the beginning of April with the Ingré Chase (Gr3), which will not be run this season, iin between.
There are seven runners in this exceptional Murat Chase, including three 5 year-olds who have not yet met their bets elders, or have not had the opportunity to really challenge them yet.
- 1. Carriacou (g7, FRA by Califet and Medanik, by Medaaly) Rating: 183
Winner of the Zeturf Grand Steeple-Chase de Paris (Gr1) last year, then third in the La Haye Jousselin Chase (Gr1), this very reliable jumper finished fifth for his return in a hurdle race at Auteuil.
- 2. Figuero (g5, FRA by Yeats and Annaland, by Saint des Saints) Rating: 168
Winner of the Maurice Gillois Chase (Gr1) last Autumn, becoming the best chaser of his generation, he confirmed his potential this season by winning for his return against aged horses over hurdles at Compiègne. This time he tries his luck against the best chasers around.
- 3. Poly Grandchamp (g8, FRA by Poliglote and Qualia Grandchamp, by Nikos) Rating: 161
He makes the frame in almost all his races and participated in most of the Auteuil topo chases last year with the exception of the Zeturf Grand Steeple-Chase de Paris (Gr1). Third this winter in the Grand Prix de Pau (Gr3), he won the Robert de Clermont-Tonnerre Chase (Gr3) for his return to Auteuil before finishing second in the Troytown Chase (Gr3) won by Ebonite.
- 4. Roxinela (f7, FRA by Muhtathir and Grivette, by Antarctique) Rating: 159
Placed in almost all of her top races last year, she ended her season in style by winning the Georges Courtois Chase (Gr2) and will make her comeback in this hot race.
- 5. Ebonite (f6, FRA by Khalkevi and Tamise, by Sleeping Car) Rating: 170
Revealed last year at age 5, she finished first or second of her last seven races. Beaten by the only Bipolaire in the La Haye Jousselin Chase (Gr1), she won her comeback at the expense of Poly Grandchamp in the Troytown Chase (Gr3).
- 6. Feu Follet (g5, FRA by Kapgarde and Folle de Toi, by Sageburg) Rating: 161
The best of his generation over hurdles last spring, he won the Alain du Breil Hurdle race (Gr1) and switched to chasing after that. He’d won twice chasing at 3 but couldn’t win again and was eventually pulled up in the Maurice Gillois Chase (Gr1), and the following week in the Renaud du Vivier Hurdle race (Gr1). Yet he won very easily for his return on the Compiègne steeple-chase in March.
- 7.Amour du Mathan (f5, FRA by Saint des Saints and Swahilie du Mathan, by Turgeon) Rating: 141
Consistent in the best 4yo chases last year, she was unlucky at the river, where she unseated her rider for her first test against her elders this year, in the Robert de Clermont-Tonnerre Chase (Gr3), then again at the rail-ditch-and-fence in the Troytown Chase (Gr3). There is probably more to come.