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April 28, 2018 - Veteran Up And Quick (10m Buvetier d’Aunou-Fichtre), a former Prix d’Amerique winner, driven by Franck Nivard for trainer Antoine Lherte and Ecurie Quick Star, won today’s Gr. II Criterium de Vitesse de Basse Normandie (purse €100,000, 1609 meters  autostart, 13 starters) clocked in 1.10.7kr at Argentan. He earned this score through miscue dq of Romanesque that got up first on the outside, only to be placed out. 2/1 Up And Quick bested 11/1 Un Mec d’Heripre (10m Orlando Vici-I Love You Darling) with Yann Lorin up and third placed was 4.6/1 Ave Avis (8m Kesaco Phedo=Magna Avis) with trainer J-M Bazire up. 1.9/1 favorite Bille de Montfort was fourth for David Thomain. The winner is now 16 for 65 yielding €2,089,040 earned for the career. Thomas H. Hicks

March 12. 2018 - Monday’s Bordeaux Le Bouscat featured Grand Prix Dynavena Maisagri Duran at Bordeaux (purse €40,000m 2650 meters distance handicap, 15 starters) went to 10/1 and 25 meter handicapped Shark Attack (10g April Perfect-Step By Step) handled by owner/trainer Mario Van Dooyeweerd. The game veteran now has nine wins in 33 FR starts and raised his career earnings to €238,058. Heinrich Platvoet bred the winner in Germany that is by a son of Armbro Goal and the dam Step By Step is a daughter of Allison Hollow from a Shogun Lobell dam. He was nicknamed early in his career “Crazy Horse” for his antics and as Claudia Platvoet now states  “We ❤ u crazy horse”. Another 10/1 and 25 meter penalized performer Aribo Mix (8g Reve des Vallees) rallied late for second, a neck short, for driver Dominik Cordeau with third to 4/5 favorite Diego Sautonne (5m Look de Star) reined by conditioner Matthieu Abrivard. A horse really named Crazy Horse was ninth. Thomas H. Hicks

January 29, 2018 - Day one post Amerique showcased the Quinte+ Prix de Rethel (purse €48,000, 2850 meters, 16 starters European) and 16/1 Brihana (7f Korean-Roxane Nova) scored in 1.14.7kr for harness racing driver Mathieu Mottier and owner/trainer Daniel Delaroche. 16/1 Ballerina Bella (7f Scipion du Goutier) was a rallying second for Matthieu Abrivard and owner/trainer Christophe Feyte. 4.6/1 Thorn Bird (7f Clerk Magistrate) and Eric Raffin were third for trainer Eric Martinsson. 1.6/1 Basic and 8.8/1 Black Rain completed the top five. The Prix d’Yvetot (purse €36,000, 2175 meters, 13 starters) went to 2.2/1 Dan Josselyn (5m Quaker Jet-Quena Josselyn) for driver David Thomain and owner/trainer Fredrik Wallin.  Race time was 1.14.2kr. 12/1 D’Artegnan de Lara (5g Otello Pierji) took second for Mathieu Mottier and 23/1 Dornadu (5g Flash de Cosse) was third for the owner/breeder/trainer/driver Christophe Gallier. The Prix de Faverolles (monte, purse €58,000, 2200 meters) went to 1.13.2kr timed and 6.6/1 odds Bariane James (7f Goetmals Wood-Ma Sissi James) with Franck Nivard in the irons for trainer Philippe Billard. Batata (7f Mood West) was second with Adrien Lamy up and Baron du Bourg (7g Lilium Madrik) was third for Eric Raffin. Although Amerique 2018 is old news, its’ impact on racing goes on with analysis of the winners’ pedigree and speculation on the future, especially upcoming Triple Crown races, the Prix de France and Paris. Carina du Parc Wins Q+ and Dark Night Love Scores in Prix de Laval January 30, 2018 - Today’s Quinte+ Prix de Vittel (purse €50,000, 2850 meters, 18 European starters) this day went to 6.7/1 Carina du Parc (6f Roc Meslois-Nymphe du Parc) for Franck Ouvrie. Christian Boisnard owns and trains this winner. 15/1 Cambridge (6f Coktail Jet-Symphonie) and driver J-M Bazire was a close second with third to 12/1 Thetis Moon (6f Idele Luis-Fairy Mabel) took third for trainer/driver Alessandro Gocciador. 86/1 Contree d’Erable and 16/1 Terra del Rio (6f Varenne) completed the top five. The Prix de Cholet (monte, purse €44,000, 2175 meters, nine starters) went to 7/2 odds Ferreteria (3f Goetmals Wood-Avenue Victoria) timed in 1.15.2kr with Matthieu Abrivard in the irons. Yves Boireau trains the J-P Dubois owned filly. 1.6/1 favorite Fado du Chene (3m Singalo-Star du Chene) held gamely second for P.Ph.Ploquin aboard for Julien LeMer, training for Claude Guedj. 39/1 Fiascetto (3m Ubriaco-Andalouse Lady) was a distant third. The featured  Prix de Laval (purse €70,000, 2100 meters autostart, 13 European) went to 1.12kr timed Dark Night Love (5f Royal Lover-Querida de Vonnes) with trainer J-M Bazire up with the 1.3/1 favorite. 6.5/1 Divine d’Ecajeul (5f Ready Cash-Mutine d’Ecajeul)  was second for Christophe Martens and Ecurie Olmenhof. 4.4/1 Dominicana (5f Rocklyn-Passion d’Haufor) held third along the pegs for Eric Raffin and owner/trainer Louis Baudron. Unison Kronos finished eighth and Unica Steed was 12th. The Prix d’Ambert (purse €36,000, 2700 meters, 11 starters) produced another Dubois family victory as Fly To The Moon (3m Rocklyn-Vendetta de Joudes) literally flew past the opposition for Julien Dubois. Philippe Moulin trains the winner for Ecurie Victoria Dreams and breeder Jean Philippe Dubois. Race time was 1.17kr. The winner off at 6.1 odds was away a distant last, then sixth over in the outer, then sweeping to the front in late stretch. Quite impressive!. 7/2 Francesco (3m Sarenne As-Flair As) held second for Christophe Gallier, breeder/owner/trainer/driver. 6.5/1 First Daidou (3m Univers de Pan)  was a good closing third for trainer/driver Romain Derieux and Ecurie Daidou. The seventh race Prix Jean et Andre de la Vaissiere (purse €50,000, 2700 meters, 15 European starters) went to game 1.14.6kr timed and 6.5/1 Ever Pride (4m Prodigious-Queenly Pride) with Gabriele Gelormini up. Sebastien Guarato trains and Philippe DeWulf owns Ever Pride. 18/1 Elnino Montaval (4g Magnificent Rodney) with Eric Raffin up and 3.1/1 Eagle Speed (4m Jasmin de Flore-Perle Speed) trailed the winner, the latter trained by Guarato for Bold Eagle’s owner Pierre Pilarski. Thomas H. Hicks

January 12, 2018 - Today’s harness racing Q+ was the Prix de Mauriac at Paris-Vincennes (purse €80,000, 2700 meters, 18 european starters). 4.6/1 Delloro Vedaquais (5g Ready Cash-Spandelle) scored easily for J.Ph. Monclin driving for owner/trainer Philippe Allaire. Race time was 1.13.1kr as the winner bested 4/1 Goofy Greenwood (5g Russel November-Chatooga River) handled by Franck Nivardf for trainer Hugo Langeweg Jr. and owner Stal Amsterdam. 5.8/1 Super Nice (5m Orlando Vici) was third for trainer/driver Bjorn Goop. 7.8/1 Diable de Vauve and 23/1 Ubimajor Bi completed the top five. 1.4/1 Seibella Park (7f Varenne-Grandera Park) won the Prix de Ranes (purse €54,000, 2700 meters, 13 starters) for J-M Bazire for trainer Vincent Lacroix and owner Scuderia Allenamento Team Minopoli. Race time was 1.13.8kr in this pick 5 event. The other pick 5 was the Prix de Vic-Bigorre (purse €34,000, 2100 meters, 16 starters) and 4.1/1 Fortune du Taco (3f Village Mystic-Kaducee) scored timed in 1.15.4kr for Franck Nivard. 2/1 Forgaria (3f Sam Bourbon-Udine) was second for David Thomain driven by Yves Boireau, the trainer for breeder/owner Jean-Pierre Dubois. 24/1 France Madrik (3f Timoko-Pretty Jet) was third for Genny Delaune driving for Sebastien Guarato. Sunday on the third “B” day will honor now retired Timoko, double winner of the Elitloppet. Thomas H. Hicks  

January 10, 2018 - Today’s Quinte+ was the Prix de la Cote d’Or (purse €46,000, 2925 meters, 18 starters) at Cagnes sur Mer on the seaside. 3.8/1 Aigle Jenilou (8g Prodigious-Queen Jenilou) scored for harness racing trainer/driver Louis Baudron, overcoming a 25 meters penalty. 29/1 Bamaro de la Gazo (7g Imoko) was second for J.Ch. Feron and another 25 meter penalized performer landed third, this being 15/1 Ara d’Ostal for Y-A Briand. 97/1 Auteur Compositeur and 2.7/1 Canyan Castelets completed the top five. Last Saturday action returned to Madiina Martinque for its first 2018 program on the turf. The Prix de la Societe de Madinina (purse €5,000, 2600 meters) went to 1.25.1kr timed Bavorois du Varlet (7g Laetenter Diem-Hera du Varlet) for his owner/trainer/driver J-L. Langeron. The winner recorded his first victory at Martinique in his initial start after being winless in 2017. The Prix Claude Cayol (purse €5,000, 2600 meters) went to 1.23.1kr clocked Vlatou des Salines (9g Magnificent Rodney-Griffe des Salines), overcoming a 50 meter handicap, and reined by J-L Langeron. This winner recorded his six score in 017-18 combined. Titan Pierji (11g Jardy-Kora Pierji) was second for Christophe Moise, also overcoming the 50 meter penalty. This coming weekend action returns to Paris-Vincennes and the January 13th card features two groupe contests including the Gr. II Prix Maurice de Gheest for three year olds. Black Jack From Wins at Vincennes January 9, 2018 - The January 9th Quinte+ Prix Limousin (purse €65,000, 2850 meters,) at Paris-Vincennes went to 1.14.6kr timed Black Jack From (7g Scipion des Goutier-Off Key) at 6/1 and reined by Eric Raffin for owner/trainer Guillaume Gillot. Vixel (9g Quido du Goutier) was second for Franck Ouvrie at 17/1, also trainer for breeder/owner Jacques Vandromme.  26/1 Vicomte de Corveil (9g Orlando Vici) took third for Anthony Barrier, ahead of 7/1 Ange de Luma (Matthieu Abrivard) and 25/1 Bachar (Pierre Vercruysse) On Tuesday the Q+ was at Vincennes in the Prix l’Aveyron (purse €65,000, 2850 meters). 82/1 outsider Venus du Rossy (9f Halimede-Lalie du Rosay) scored timed in 1.14.7kr for Laurent Verva and trainer Olivier Tirard. Valentines Day (9f Carpe Diem) at 18/1 and driver Franck Nivard was second for trainer Gregoire Houel. 86/1 Aragonaise (8f Ouragon de Celland) and P.Ph. Ploquin took third ahead of 8/1 Beau de Beauval (David Thomain) and 12/1 Ardente du Clos (Matthieu Abrivard) that completed the top five. The program also included the Prix Christelle Zimmer (monte, purse €88,000, 2850 meters, apprentice jockeys). Veteran Americaine (8g Chef du Chatelet-Marine Raudiere) scored at 5.1/1 oddds timed in 1.13.6kr for Alexandre Angot in the irons for trainer J-P Marmion. Accord Marjacq (8g Odeisis de Vandel) at 15/1 was second for Victor Saussaye and third was 11/1 Arena del Phedo (8f Magnificent Rodney) for jockey Mlle. Oceane Briand. Thomas H. Hicks    

December 30, 2017 - Today’s Gr. III Prix Yvonnick Boden (monte, purse €105,000, 2700 meters, 18 starters) went to noteable front stepping harness racing monte specialist 2.6/1 Arlington Dream (7g Ready Cash-Ialla Clairchamp) and jockey Mlle. Delphine Besse, who won her first in 2017. Philippe Allaire trains the property of Frederic Sauque. 29/1 Vrai Voyou (8g Gazouillis-Oranginette) was second for Romain Marty, in the irons for trainer P. Emmanuel Marty. 19/1 Americaine  (7f Chef de Chatelet-Marine Raudiciere) was third with Alexandre Angot up.  Race time was 1.12.4kr for the six length winner. Today’s Quinte + was the Prix de Bar le Doc (purse €105.000, 2850 meters distance handicap. 15 European starters) went to 1.13.7kr timed and 11/1 Ungaro d’Eva (9g Ipsom de Mormal-Iomolly) driven by Eric Raffin for J-M Baudouin. 8.9/1 Alfor de Mire (7g Notre Haufor-Hilda Dix) was second for Charles J. Bigeon and trainer Christian Bigeon, ahead of 22/1 and 25 meter handicapped Totem d’Azur (10m Joao Panca) and Junior Guelpa, also trainer. 23/1 Arthuro Boy and 5.2/1 A Nice Biy completed the top five. 3/1 Atlas da Vinci with Bjorn Goop and 7/2 Call Me Keeper and Pierre Vercruysse were dnf’s when Atlas fell at top of stretch and following Call Me Keeper went into his rival and also went down. Both pilots were unseated. The Prix de Tence (purse €40,000, 2700 meters, 16 starters) went to 6.6/1 Capella de Vrie (5f Prince d’Espace-Pandore Vrie) for driver Franck Nivard and breeder/owner/trainer Roger Baudron. 9/1 Carte Secrete (5f Prodigious-Libre Allure) was second for driver Julien Dubois, Ecurie Victoria Dreams and trainer Philippe Moulin. 2.2/1 favorite Cadence des Fre (5f Panache de l’Iton) and driver Eric Raffin took third. Race time was 1.14.9kr. Other good winners on the card were 1.4/1 Dubai D’essarts (4f Kaisy Dream-Ode des Essarts) timed in 1.12.4kr for Francois Lagadeuc  in the Prix de Damville (purse €70,000, 2100 meters autostart, 16 starters). Two year olds contested the Prix des Eglantiers (purse €42,000, 2850 meters, 10 starters) and the winner was 17/1 Fighter Smart (2m Uniclove-Vicky Cash) with Matthieu Abrivard up. 7.9/1 Fargo (2m Atlas de Joudes) was second for Eric Raffin and owner/trainer Philippe Allaire. 4/1 French Man (2m Voyage de Reve-Oh Butterfly) held third for Julien Dubois, the breeder/owner/trainer. Fleuron d’Iroise (2m Kaisy Dream) with William Bigeon and 1.3/1 favorite Faithful (2m Village Mystic) for breeder/owner/trainer Louis Baudron were fourth and fifth. J-M Bazire remains the FR dash winning driver for 2017 with 231 wins for €6.2million purse won. Bazire had 255 wins in 2016 and has held the title since 2010 with Franck Nivard second in each year except one. Thomas H. Hicks

December 12, 2017 - Today’s harness racing Quinte+ was at Cabourg in the Prix des Calceolaires (purse €40,000, 2750 meters, 16 starters) and the result lighted up the payoff scoreboard. 35/1 The Au Lait (10g Nuage de Lait-Kalfouny) scored timed in 1.13.1kr for Pierre Christian Jean and trainer Stephane Provoost/owner Ecurie Danover. 10/1 Valeur Ges (8f Quaro) was second for owner/trainer/driver Sylvain Marmion. 22/1 Valentine’s Day (8f Carpe Diem) took third for Pierre Houle. 10/1 Amigo Turgot and 24/1 Uppy de Vive ended fourth and fifth. The exact order payoff exceeded €372,000 for a €2 play. Interestingly the next four were off at 45, 28, 17 and 22/1 respectively, all finishing ahead of 7/10 Angelo AM that finished 10th, illustrating why horses race. Upcoming Vincennes weekend action includes the Saturday Prix Oscar Collard (Gr. III, purse €95,000, 2100 meters autostart) and Sunday the Prix Jean Dumouch (Gr.III, purse €115,000, 2850 meters, European). The latter includes in its early entrants Call Me Keeper, Uza Josselyn, Cash Gamble, Tony Gio, Traders, In Vain Sund and many others. Thomas H. Hicks

December 3, 2017 - 1.8/1 favorite Bel Avis (6g Ganymede-Gloria Maris) took today’s Quinte+ Finale Grand National du Trot Paris-Turf (purse €150,000, 2850 meters, 18 starters) with a sweeping move to the front around the last bend. Harness racing trainer/driver Jean-Michel Bazire has the Wildenstein Stables Ltd. Veteran well positioned behind outer tier cover before exploding to the front and then leading comfortably in the lane. Comte de Bellaigue bred this winner that bested 13/1 Vulcania de Godrel (f Memphis du Rib-Julietta) reined by Anthony Barrier. Third was 8.9/1 Violine Mourotaise (8f Le Retour-Mourotaise) for David Thomain ahead of the next pair, Vanderlov and Tiger Danover. The afternoon program included several groupe events, The Gr. II monte  Prix Philippe du Rozier (purse €120,000, 2175 meters, eight starters) went to 2.4/1 Driver Cadence (4m Saxo de Vandel-Rose Pourpre) with Mathieu Mottier up for Ecurie Cadence 3 and trainer Emmanuele Allard. Race time was 1.13.1kr and theft 3/5 favorite Dragon du Fresne (4m Saphir Castelets) and Alexandre Abrivard second. 7/2 Dexter Fromentro (4m Qwerty) took third for Camille Levesque. There were three Gr. III Le Trot Open des Regions on the card, each for a purse of €85,000 and raced over the 2850 meter distance. The three year old edition went to 1.2/1 Elvis Madrik (3g Overtrick-Tequila Dara) with J-M Bazire aboard. Elisione Mag (3f Quaker Jet-Perle du Ravary) was second with David Thomain up. The four year olds event was won by 4.1/1 Danise d’Etary (4f Un Amour d’Haufor-Rumba d’Etang) timed in 1.14.4kr for trainer/driver Christian Bigeon. The five year old contest went to 1.14kr timed and 20/1 Comete Leman (5f Neptune Leman) with Mathieu Mottier up for owner/trainer Y.J. Bezcoet. Later in the card Christian Bigeon was back for a second win driving Diane d’Haufor (4f Paris Haufor) timed in 1.15.8kr in the €38,000 Prix de Jonchery. The Finale Grand National des Jockeys (monte, purse €62,000, 18 starters) also took place with the 1.13.8kr timed and 70/1 Varum Boy (8g Baccarat du Pont) winning for Damien Bonne and Yves Dreux, the breeder/owner/trainer. David Thomain and his mount Brut de la Cote finished second ahead of Eric Raffin aboard Baronne de Bapre (6f Prodigious). Thomas H. Hicks  

November 29, 2017 - Yoann Lebourgeois drove 7.2/1 Mindyourvalue WF (4g Hovding Lavec-Mind Your Business) to a 1.13.6kr timed victory in today’s  harness racing Quinte+ Prix de Picardie (purse €90,000, 2850 meters, 18 European starters) at Paris-Vincennes. This Robert Bergh trainee is owned by Christer Englund and the winner bested 9/2 Direct Way (4g Quaker Jet-Queen Flore) handled by Anthony Barrier for trainer Philippe Allaire. 27/1 Diable de Vauvert (4m Prince d’Espace-Pop Star) was third for David Thomain. 15/1 Dream de Nilrem and 1.8/1 Rajesh Face were the next pair to the line creating a €6,755 payoff for a €2 play. Other winners on the Vincennes program included 17/1 Ezio Josselyn (3m Prodigious-Lezira Josselyn) for driver Bjorn Goop in the €60,000 Prix Jean Maurice Beteau. Ronny Kuiper is the trainer of the 1.15.8kr timed Ezio Josselyn. The €58,000 Prix de Bouville went to 1.12.8kr timed (over 2175 meters) and 2.3/1 odds Callijo Delbi (5g Rieussec-Joliette de Manvez) reined by Matthieu Abrivard for owner/trainer H.N. Bihel. Two year olds were on display in two divisions of the (€38,000 A Division and €35,000 B Division) Prix des Anemones  each raced over 2200 meters. Groupe A went to 1.18.1kr timed and 3.8/1 odds Fantastic Life (2f Prodigious-True Life) driven by Jean Philippe Dubois for his Ecurie Victoria Dreams. The B groupe went to 1.17kr timed and 3.1/1 odds Flower Power (2f Love You-Ornella Rainbow). Thomas H. Hicks    

Today’s Quinte+ was the Paris-Vincennes Prix de Meslay du Maine (purse €55,000, 2700 meters, 18 starters). The 3/2 favorite Athis Deladou (7g Islero de Bellouet-Prettily du Dame) scored for reinsman J-M Bazire, defeating 22/1 Very First (8g Orlando Vici) handled by trainer J.F. Senet and third finishing 50.5/1 Variuso du Bouffey (8g Look de Star) driven by Gabriele Gelormini. 2.8/1 Ange de Lune and 11.2/1 Vaat des Caillons completed the top five and set up the €10,299 payoff for a €2 wager. Top action is on tap for this weekend at Vincennes. On December 2 are the Gr. II Prix Joseph Lafose, a monte event for €120,000 purse raced over 2700 meters, and the Gr. II Prix Doynel de Saint-Quentin for the same purse and raced over 2850 meters. On December 3 there is the Gr, II Finale of the GNT Paris-Turf for €150,000; and the Gr. II monte Prix Philippe du Rozier for four year olds. That program also includes three Gr III Le Trot Open des Regions, one each for three, four and five year olds, each raced over 2850 meters. Thomas H. Hicks  

November 24, 2017 - The Prix de l’ile (purse €95,000, 2859 meters, European monte starters), Thursday’s featured harness racing event, went to 16/1 Tout Va Bien (10g Inen-LaLolita) with P.Ph. Ploquin in the irons for breeder/owner/trainer Bertrand Kernivinen. Timed in 1.14.3kr the winner was placed first due to dq of Bruyere du Rib. Placed second was 15.9/1 Vivaldi d’Ambroise (8m Kid Blue-Oceane d’Ambroise) with Oceane Briand aboard. Placed third was 83/1 Taj Mahal d’Ombree (10g Ni Ho Ped d’Ombree-Maharani d’Ombree) with Romain Marty up. Tout Va Bene pl1 Today’s Q+ was at Paris-Vincennes as the Prix de Sille le Guillaume (purse €70,000. 2850 meters, European starters) and victory went to 61.2/1 Ultra du Gade (9g Memphis du Rib-Bayonne). Eric Raffin teamed this J.P. Lecourt trainee for owner D.J. Julien. 27.3/1 Amarilla de Rabut (7f Ideal de lIton-Delux Pommes) was second ahead of 13.9/1 Athos des Volos (7m Lynx de Bellouet-Penelope des Volos). The next two were off at 9.3/1 and 9.2/1 setting up a large exact order Q+ payoff shown below. The program also included a victory in the Prix de Dunkerque (purse €60,000, 2850 meters) by 1.14.4kr timed and 3/5 favored Dorgos de Guez (4g Roncok du Guez-Lady Fromentro) with trainer Jean Michel Bazire up. 27/1 Doum Jenilou (4g Rancho Gede) and 4.6/1 Dark Mencourt (4m Tucson) were the next pair to the line. On Friday at Vincennes was the Q+ Prix Triton (purse €46,000, 2850 meters, 16 starters) and 26.4/1 Bachar (6m Prodigious-Princesse Victoire) prevailed for driver Gabriele Gelormini and Ecurie Augustin-Normand. 17/1 Bolide du Guet (6g Fortuna Fant-Oliva du Guet) and 4.2/1 Bois de Baudrai (6m Rocklyn) were second and third. Thomas H. Hicks  

November 22, 2017 - Today’s harness racing Q+ was at Mauquenchy in the 13th leg of the Grand National du Trot Paris-Turf (Gr. III, purse €90,000, 2850 meters distance handicap, 18 starters). Victory went to 3/1 Aero King (7g Hooper-Quarmina du Hour) reined by Anthony Barrier for owner/trainer Mme. Virginie Lecroq. Race time was 1.14.2kr and the top three home were not distance handicapped. 45.9/1 Vanderlov (8g Orlando Vici-Maestria de Fligny) took second for trainer/driver Aymeric Thomas. 10.7/1 Bon Copain (6m Love You-Haie) was third for Francois Levcanu/ 2.4/1 Classic Way (5m Prodigious) was fourth. This Tour de Trance des Trotteurs commenced March 8 and now after 13 legs Tiger Danover has 70 points, ahead of Violine Mourotaise with 56 and Ursa Major with 54 points. The final will be December 3 at Paris-Vincennes. This series brings upper level trotters to smaller markets throughout France. Yesterday (November 21) at Paris-Vincennes was the Prix Ostarg (purse €55,000, 2850 meters, 16 entrants) and the 1.13.2kr timed, 22.3/1 odds, winner was Chica de Joudes (5f Jag de Ballouet-Queschua Love) reined by owner/trainer Alain Laurent. 3/2 favorite Comete des Vaux (5f Simngalo-Queen Marie Vaux) reined by Tony LeBeller for owner/trainer J.M. Legros. 12.7/1 Callas du Bouff (5f Look de Star) was third for David Thomain. Same evening, same venue, was the Prix Polyxo (purse €33,000, 2200 meters, 14 starters) and 4/5 favorite Fashion Queen (2f Pablo As-Pidelia) scored for Eric Raffin timed in 1.16.6kr. Philippe Allaire trains the filly, bred and owned by J.M. Tessier. Second for 9.9/1 Folie Prestance (2f Sam Bourbon-Quelle Prestance) for driver Matthieu Abrivard, trainer Paul Hagoort and owner J.A.C. Vanduffel.18.2/1 Frigate Island (2f Timoko-Adneika) driven by Alexandre Abrivard for trainer Bjorn Goop and owners P&O Bronsman AB. Thomas H. Hicks  

November 10, 2017 - 6.9/1 Defides Pistes (4g Neutron du Cebe-Ombre des Pistes) held on for victory in Friday evening’s harness racing Prix Titan (monte, purse €50,000, 14 starters) clocked in 1.14.1kr and with Adrien Lamy in the irons. Andre Melosi is breeder/owner. 5.7/1 Diktat du Start (4g Quaker Jet) rallied strongly for second with Matthieu Abrivard up for trainer Philippe Daugeard and third went to 28.2/1 Diego de Retz (4g First de Retz) for P.Ph. Ploquin. The day’s Quinte+ event was at Vincennes and that result lit up the payoff board. 8.6/1 Bahamas Quick (6f Pim Quick-Kouriakine) scored for Franck Nivard, trainer Franck Leblanc and Ecurie Quick Star, the breeder/owner. 33.1/1 Bahia Somolli (6f Millenium Wood-Italia Somolli) was second and 20.2/1 Balla du Vivier (6f Korean-Naa du Vivier) took third. 46.7/1 Brihana and 58/1 Bridget Landemer completed and top five and complete a big time score for exact order ticket pickers. Next week starts the Epiqe Series that leads to the Prix d’Amerique. The kickoff is the Grand Prix de Bretagne that typically draws many of the best Amerique potential participants. Thomas H. Hicks                    

November 3, 2017 - Well regarded Cobra Bleu (5m Fortuna Fant-Nuit Irisee) returned in victory today at Le Croise Laroche, winning the harness racing Grand Prix du Nord 5Ans (purse €40,000, 2825 meters distance handicap, 10 starters) clocked in 1.15.3kr. Pierre Vercruysse drove Cobra Bleu, one that he also trains, for breeder/owner Nathalie Chepdelaine. The 2/5 favorite overcame a 25 meter handicap, and after catching his rivals, staged a four wide move to the lead with a lap remaining, to defeat 7/1 Chic (5f Look de Star-Marine du Hausey), Franck Nivard up,  and 10/1 Coeur de Loup (5g Jet Fortuna-Otra Luna) reined by trainer Philippe Deaugeard. Cobra Bleu scored his second 2017 win in only three starts and now has 10 career victories for €442,640 earned. Cobra Bleu is one to watch at the Vincennes Winter Meet. He has shown up before, placing second last Christmas day in the Criterium Continental and he won Gr. II events such as the Prix Phaeton and Prix Ephrem Houel, also in 2016. Evening racing this day at Paris-Vincennes was highlighted by the Quinte+ Prix Barbara (purse €48,000, 2100 meters autostart, 18 starters) that resulted in a 1.13.3kr timed victory by 43/1 Agi de Crenes (7g Joyou d’Amour-Ovation de Crennes) reined by J.P. Maillard. 8.2/1 Atout de Gainaut (7g Gazouillis) was next for Eric Raffin and third was 4.7/1 Aquero de Soudes (7g Dahir de Prelong) for Alain Laurent. Monday the Paris-Vincennes afternoon program will be worth tracking with its three Gr. II events and other meaningful contests. PRIX REYNOLDS 120 000€ Groupe II - Monté - 2 175m - International PRIX REINE DU CORTA 120 000€ Groupe II - Attelé - 2 175m – 3yo females PRIX ABEL BASSIGNY 120 000€ Groupe II - Attelé - 2 175m -3yo males Well respected Tornado Bello (monte), three year old fillies Electra Jet, Elegantissime, Erming d’Oliverie  and three year old colts Express Jet, Espoir Prestance, Eridan and Ecu Pierji will be at the start. Thomas H. Hicks  

October 25, 2017 - Wednesday evening the Enghien harness racing program was highlighted by two year-olds competing in the Prix du Bas-Rhin (purse €34,000, 2875 meters, 12 starters). The 4.7/1 Fleur de Lys Delo (2f Quaker Jet-Princesse Royale) scored with a late rally timed in 1.18.2kr for driver Gabriele Gelormini and breeder/owner Mme. Elodie Mangeard de Barros. 6.6/1 pacesetter Folie Prestance (2f Sam Bourbon-Quelle Prestance) held for second driven by Matthieu Abrivard, breeder/owner Joseph Vanduffel and trainer Paul Hagoort. 7.5/1 Firefly (2f Ready Cash-Topaze Bourbon) came from far back to land third for driver Alexandre Abrivard, owner Jean Pierre Dubois, breeder Scuderia Bolgheri Srl and trainer Yves Boireau. The card also included the Prix de L’Aigle (purse €60,000, 2875 meters, 15 starters) and the 1.15.3kr winner was 2.2/1 Cristal du Perche (5g Roc du Coq-Hutesca) reined by David Thomain. Second was 6.3/1 Clovic Montaval (5g Qualimo de Vandel-Jegalo de Crepan) for Gabriele Gelormini and third went to 7/1 Classic Word (5g Password-Rumba du Moncel) driven by Matthieu Abrivard for trainer/owner Paul Hagoort. Friday night at Paris-Vincennes are three groupe events. The Prix Louis Cauchois (purse €80,000, 2200 meters) that drew Fleirel Vedaquaid and Fabriz du Gite. The Prix Pierre Van Troyeu (purse €80,000, 2850 meters) includes in the field Caline de Fleur, Carla Love and Dulcinee Vrie. The Prix Gisella (purse €65,000, 2850 meters) drew well-regarded Express Bourbon, a Sebastien Guarato trainee. Thomas H. Hicks

October 21, 2017 - Today’s marathon Gr. III International Grand Prix de la Ville de Caen (purse €80,000, 4400 meters distance handicap, 18 International starters), also the Q+ race of the day, went to 10/1 Uniflosa Bella (9f Jag de Bellouet-Koctiflosa Bella) that overcame a 25 meter handicap to win for Eric Raffin. Timed in 1.15.1kr the J.P. Marmion owned trainee, bred by Remi Boucret, recorded her 23rd career win in 83 outings for €640,440 earned. Second finishing Val Royal (8m Capriccio-Quar du Rib), also penalized 25 meters at the start, set the pace throughout for owner/trainer/driver Jean Michel Bazire and gamely held on at 6.4/1. The 3/2 favorite Cantin de l’éclair and 2.1/1 Traders were misque dq’s. 22.4/1Alienor de Godrel (7f Orlando Vici-Julietta) was third this day for trainer/driver Franck Anne and Ecurie AB Trot. 19/1 Visconti (8g Magnificent Rodney) was fourth for trainer/driver Franck Nivard, this one also 25 meter handicapped. 50 meter handicapped and 131/1 Athena de Vandel (7f Prince Gede-Maclia de Vandel) landed the fifth sport for Mathieu Mottier. Longshots continued in the Prix de Champcerie (purse €46,000, 2200 meters autostart, 18 starters) at Caen with victory earned by 48.4/1 Valea MIP (8f Ganymede-Javotte Ducale) reined by Alexandre Ramage for trainer Sebastien Guarato and owner Ecurie MIP, The 1.12.4kr timed winner defeated 182/1 Blooma d’Heripre (6f Rolling d’Heripre-Quenta Por Favor) and teamster Anthony Menager and trainer Gregory Horel. Third went to 13.8/1 Athos des Volos (7m Lynx de Bellouet-Penelope des Volos) handled by Eric Raffin, 3/1 Bolt was a misque dq. At Orebro SWE today was the Express Gaxe raced over 2100 meters autostart for 150,000SEK first money. What was billed as a FR prep for Nuncio turned into a stunning defeat. Day Or Night In (5m Muscle Hill-Ellie America-Buvetier d’Aunou) scored in gate to wire fashion from post six, driven by trainer Johan Untersteiner for Invexbro AB, breeder/owner. The 12.5/1 shot bested pocket sitter Spring Erom (12m Gentle Star-Springflickan-Prince Mystic) with Christoffer Eriksson up and 10.5/1 I Love Paris (7f Steinlager-Marie Dulcinea-Egyptian Gentleman) rallied three wide in the last quarter and earned third for trainer/driver Bjorn Goop. Nuncio has post one and was away fourth on the pegs before moving first over after 400 meters. He stayed second on the outer thereafter for Stefan Melander before stalling in the final bend and through the lane, ending fifth. Race time was 1.12.3kr off even fractions, the 1500 meter mark time was 1.12.2kr and the 1000 was 1.12.9kr. Thomas H. Hicks  

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