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Tuesday 21 November 2017

No excuses for Turpin as Lope lords it at Longchamp

Dick Turpin failed to steal the French 2000 Guineas as master trainer Andre Fabre landed his fifth Poule D'Essai Des Poulains with Lope De Vega at Longchamp.

Richard Hannon's Greenham Stakes winner chased home French raider Makfi at Newmarket two weeks' ago and followed up with another solid effort under Richard Hughes.

The 10/1 winner appeared to have it all to do from his outside draw in stall 15 but enjoyed the clearest of passages down the centre of the course under rising star Maxime Guyon.

He was well on top inside the final furlong and scored with half a length in hand of Dick Turpin, with 100/1 Czech runner Shamalgan in third.

Despite Dick Turpin's defeat, there were no long faces in the Hannon camp following Paco Boy's Lockinge win 24 hours earlier and the team will be gunning for further Classic glory with Canford Cliffs at the Curragh next weekend. Richard Hannon jnr, the trainer's son and assistant, said: "He's run a super race and has now finished second in two Guineas.

"He's an exceptionally good horse but there are no excuses and we will now go and take our chance in the St James's Palace."

Fabre failed to appear at the winner's presentation, but Guyon said: "The horse never stopped and they went a very good pace.

"He is certainly a very good horse and he might stay the distance of the Prix du Jockey-Club (10 furlongs)."

Marchand D'or returned to his brilliant best on his first outing for 2000 Guineas-winning trainer Mikel Delzangles as he came from the ruck to claim the five-furlong Prix De Saint-Georges.

The grey speedster was campaigned with great success by Freddie Head previously and travelled to England in 2008 to land Newmarket's July Cup.

After an interrupted campaign last year, the seven-year-old made his debut for Delzangles on the French Guineas undercard and charged through the field to deny the Kevin Ryan-trained Benbaun by a head.

Delzangles said: "We wanted to see if his fighting spirit is still there and it obviously is. A long break has done him good and he is a possibility to go to Royal Ascot."

Godolphin fielded two runners in the Prix Hocquart but neither Lion Mountain or Emirates Dream landed a blow as Silver Pond easily scored as the 7/2 favourite under Olivier Peslier.

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