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The day’s featured Gr. I Prix Comte Pierre de Montesson at Vincennes (Criterium des Jeunes, purse €200,000, 2700 meters, three year old open), resulted in an upset harness racing victory by 15/1 Folelli (3f Timoko-Andree d’Ecajeul) with Alexandre Abrivard up. Frederic Pratt is trainer/breeder of this one that Flavien Pratt owns. Race time was 1.14.5kr. 37/1 Fend la Bise (3f Prince Gede-Una Prima Steed) was second for trainer/driver Franck Anne and owner Ecurie AB Trot. 51/1 Fabriz du Gite (3m Tabriz du Gite-Salamandre du Gite) was home third driven by Franck Ouvrie. 20/1 File Gin (3m Repeat Love) and 4/1 Follow You (3m Ready Cash-Mara Bourbon) completed the top five. There were five dq’s and they included 1.3/1 Fly With Us, 9/1 Feeling Cash 7.5/1 Fastissime. Folelli - 2018 Youth Criterium - Vincennes Brazil day festivities of music, dance and racing included the Prix de la Lusophonie “Finistere” (purse €80,000, 2850 meters, ten starters) and this victory went to 1.13.9kr timed and 25/1 odds Danae de la Frette (5g Quaro-Queen de la Frette) with Adrien Lamy up for trainer Franck Leblanc and Ecurie du Grand Buisson. 2.2/1 Deesse des Landes (5f Millenium Wood-Tifosa) was second for L.M. David, the owner/trainer/driver. 19/1 Daylight (5f Prodigious-Ilexia) took third for Jean Philippe Dubois. The Brazil Carnival got rolling surrounding the Quinte+ of the day. The Q+ Prix du Bresil (purse €54,000, 2700 meters, 18 European starters) went to 13/1 Valfleury (9g Memphis du Rib-Idague) with trainer Thierry Duvaldestin up, timed in 1.14kr. 8.6/1 Diamond (8g Classic Photo-Gala dei Bessi) with reinsman Matthieu Abrivard held second for driver Paul Hagoort and Ecurie Mille Fleurs. 33/1 Agi de Crennes (8f Joyou d’Amour), 36/1 Twitter (9g Offshore Dream) and 2/1 Siebella Park (7f Varenne) rounded out the top five finishers. Festivities of Brazil Day at the hippodrome surrounded this race. The very impressive Davidson du Pont (5m Pacha du Pont-Laguna du Pont) recorded an easy victory in the Gr. II Prix Ovide Moulinet (purse €120,000, 2700 meters) for trainer/driver Jean-Michel Bazire and Ecurie Albert Rayon.  This 1.1/1 favorite was timed in 1.13.4kr off soft fractions (1.16.1kr at 1500 remaining; 1.14.8kr at the 1000 and 1.14kr with 500 to go) on the front. 2.8/1 Django Riff (5m Ready Cash-Rasta Perrine) was second for Yoann Lebourgeois, trainer Philippe Allaire and breeder/owner Elisabeth Allaire. 5.7/1 Diego Sautonne (5m Look de Star-Olympe Sautonne) took third with Matthieu Abrivard up for breeder/owner Marielle Touillet.  Davidson du Pont is a horse to watch in this and future years. The Gr. III Prix Rio Conseils et Credits (purse €100,000, 2700 meters, four year olds) went to the rallying 1.14.2kr timed and 12/1 odds Voltaire Gifont (4m Quaker Jet-Realm of Fancy). Legendary Pietro Gubellini reined the winner for trainer Cristian Rizzo and owner Mme. Catarina Ballini. 5.2/1 Elvis Madrik (4g Overtrick-Tequila Dara) held second for Frack Nivard and trainer/owner Jean Michel Baudouin. Third was 12/1 Espella Vedaquais (4f Thorens Vedaquais-Marie Blanche) driven by Yoann Lebourgeois for owner/trainer Philippe Allaire. 8.2/1 Vrai Voyou (9g Gazouillis-Oranginette) took the Gr. III monte Prix SLCR (purse €110,000, 2175 meters, European eligibles) timed in a sharp 1.11.2kr off quick fractions (1.09.1kr at the 1500 to go mark; 1.10.2 at the 1000 and 1.11.1kr with 500 remaining). Adrien Lamy was in the irons for owner/trainer P.E.  Mary.  Favored Val Royal (9m Capriccio-Quarda du Rib) took second for Eric Raffin, trainer J-M Bazire and breeder/owner Ecurie des Charmes. 9/1 Valse de Reve (9f Mister President-Nouba Houba) took third for jockey Guillaume Martin and trainer Alain Roussel. The Prix Mediatica (purse €36,000, 2100 meters autostart, 13 starters) showcased a 1.13.2kr timed victory for 2.3/1 Diaghilev (5m Goetmals Wood-Qadidja) driven by trainer/owner Jorgen Westholm and Team Westholm AB. 6/1 Diamant d’Isques (5m Rolling d’Heripre) was second for Gabriele Gelormini. A special annual event near the end of the Winter Meet at Paris-Vincennes is the Prix des Trotteurs Sang-Froid (purse €20,000, 2100 meters autostart, 12 international coldbloods) and 4.9/1 Josveis (9g Viesker) driven by Antti Ojanpera for owner Paul Lindgren of Finland. Race time was 1.25.3kr. 5.3/1 Tand Tuff (9m Jarvsofaks) was a just beaten second for driver J.Ph. Monclin, trainer J-O Persson (the trainer of Jarvsofaks) and owner Christer Lindstrom of Sweden. Next Sunday at Vincennes is the third leg of the Triple Crown that is the Prix de Paris for €400,000 and contested over 4150 meters. Thomas H. Hicks

Elite du Royal (4f Timoko-Romance du Ruel) at 12/1 ran off to a huge lead in the Gr. II Prix Ephrem Houel (purse €120,000, 2850 meters, 11 starters) for trainer/driver Franck Anne and held it for a 1.18.9kr harness racing score. Mme. Annick Bazin bred and owns the winner. 3.7/1 Enino du Pommereux (4m Coktail Jet-Noune du Pommereux) and J-M Bazire was second for trainer Sylvain Roger and breeder/owner Noel Lolic. 1.1/1 favorite Erming d’Oliverie (4f Scipion du Goutier) was third with Franck Nivard up for trainer Franck Leblanc. The day’s featured Q+ Prix de Munich (purse €95,000, 2100 meters, 15 European starters) went to Bigeon stalwart 1.8/1 favorite Afghan Barbes (8g Meaulnes du Corta-Nuance Barbes) with Charles J. Bigeon up for trainer Christian Bigeon and owner Andre Francis Bigeon. The 1.17.=2kr timed winner now has 16 victories in 45 career outings for €523,260 earned. 3.1/1 Bel Avis (7g Ganymede-Gloria Maris) was second for trainer/driver J-M Bazire, owner Wildenstein Stables and the breeder was Comte de Belaigue. 18/1 Bad Boy du Dollar (7m Magnificent Rodney) with Matthieu Abrivard up took third ahead of 81/1 Coquin Bebe (6m Rancho Gede) and 20/1 Unbridled Charm (10m Password) that completed the top five. Treasure Kronos was 1th and Rod Stewart was a dq in this event. The Prix de Verneuil (purse €72,000, 2850 meters, 13 European starters) went to 3/1 Deesse des Landes (5f Millenium Wood-Tifosa) with owner/trainer L.M. David at the lines. Race time was 1.21.9kr over the heavy surface. 12/1 Decennie (5f Love You-Parabola) was second for Mathieu Mottier and trainer Dominique Mottier. Third was Danseuse du Citrus (5f Otello Pierji) with David Thomain up for trainer Bjorn Goop, and Gilda Newport landed the fourth spot. The monte Prix de Lisieux (purse €88,000, 2850 meters, 12 starters) produced a 23/1 odds victory for Vinci Pierji (9g Meaulnes du Corta-Intaille) with trainer Matthieu Abrivard in the irons. Race time was 1.17.3kr. 17/1 Tell Me No Lies (9g Offshore Dream-B.Glorious was next for pilot David Thomain, KLV Holding AB and trainer Philippe Billard. Third was 1.9/1 Shadow Gar (7f Pine Chip-Lady Killer Gar) for jockey Alexandre Abrivard and trainer/owner Pietro Gubellini. The Prix de Selestat (purse €33,000, 2700 meters, 14 starters) began the Saturday racing action over a heavy, thawing, snow melting day at Vincennes. The winner was 7/2 odds Famous Quality (3f Rocklyn-Union Quality) with Jean Philippe Dubois up for his Ecurie Victoria Dreams and trainer Philippe Moulin.  Time was 1.22.1kr. 1.9/1 favorite Flora du Pommereux (3f Up And Quick-Salsa du Pommereux) took second for Franck Nivard, trainer Sylvain Roger and owner Noel Lolic. Third went to 7.3/1 Ficite de Baille (3f Neutron du Cebe-Korella)  for Mathieu Mottier, trainer Dominique Mottier and breeder/owner Ecurie Mathieu Mottier. Later in the program the Prix du Bouscat (purse €37,000, 2700 meters) went to 1.19.3kr timed Ducal Vrie (5g Kesaco Phedo-Shalima Vrie) with Franck Nivard up for legendary breeder/owner/trainer Roger Baudron (now with 1,104 training victories). Thomas H. Hicks  

February 3, 2018 - Today’s harness racing groupe action at Vincennes began with the Gr. II Prix Roquepine (purse €120,000, 2175 meters, seven starters-three year old fillies) and the 1/5 favorite and previously unbeaten Fly With Us was a dq paving the way for 28/1 Fanina des Racques (3f Ready Cash-Nina des Racques) to score timed in 1.15.3kr with J.Ph. Monclin up. Alexandre Buisson owns and trains this filly now with two wins in 10 outings for €96,090 earned. Mme. Josette Warin bred this one. 8/1 Folelli (3f Timoko-Andrea d’Ecajeul) was second for Alexandre Abrivard for breeder/trainer Frederic Prat and owner Flavien Prat. 11/1 Fortaleza (3f Prince d’Espace-Houlba de Pouline) took third for driver J-M Bazire and owner/trainer J-M Baudouin. The Gr. III Prix d’Avignon (purse €80,000, 2100 meters, 14 starters) went to 1.12.2kr timed Elsa du Pommereux (4f Coktail Jet-Salsa du Pommereux) for trainer/driver Sylvain Roger and breeder/owner Noel Lolic. This 28/1 odds winner defeated 6.3/1 Espella Vedaquais (4f Thorens Vedaquais-Marie Blasque) and 11/1Everglades (4f Rodrigo Jet-Penang) for trainer/driver Thomas Levesque and owner Pierre Levesque. Eagle Lignerie and Extasy d’Ourville were fourth and fifth, the latter after two straight wins. The day’s co-featured Prix Paul Viel (Gr. II, purse €120,000, 2175 meters, 11 starters – three year old colts) produced an impressive winner in 6.8/1 Fastissime (3m Ready Cash-Ivre de Victoire). Yoann Lebourgeois teamed the Philippe Allaire bred and trained performer that Frederic Sauque owns. Race time was 1.14.8kr. 5/1 File Gin (3m Repeat Love-Toscara Pellois) was second for Guillermo Roig-Baliguer and breeder/owner Philippe Levy. 38/1 Fakir du Lorault (3m Vaillant Cash-Native du Lorault) was home third for Francois Lecanu. 22/1 Fabriz du Gite was fourth. The 2.1/1 favorite Feeling Cash was ninth after being first up and then weakened in the lane. The Q+ Prix de la Gironde (purse €70,000, 2850 meters, 14 starters, distance handicapped) went to 23/1 Vicomte de Corveil (9g Orlando Vici-Miss de Corveil), shown below, timed in 1.14.1kr with a quick final 500 meters for driver J.Ph. Monclin and owner/trainer David Cherbonnel. The 25 meter handicapped and 1.7/1 favorite Ble du Gers (7g Quinoa du Gers-Moorea) was second with trainer J-M Bazire up for owner J,M, Rancoule. Third was 10/1 Vixel (9g Quido du Goutier-Madrine) and trainer/driver Franck Ouvrie. 8.3/1 Bora Bora Jiel and 12/1 Bocsi de Lespi completed the top five. In the mid-card Prix de Barfleur (purse €54,000, 2100 meters autostart, 15 starters) 7.8/1 Dorus Well (5g Gogo-Parama) scored in a quick 1.11.7kr (1:55.36 mile rate) for Franck Nivard. Antonius Wilderbeek bred, owns and trains this impressive winner, shown below. 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 28, 2018 - Today’s Prix d’Amerique Vincennes program offered three good monte contests, two groupe events and an apprentice jockey race to end the harness racing card. The Prix Camille Blaisot (Gr. II monte, purse €120,000, 285 meters) began racing action this day and it went to Dexter Fromentro  (5m Qwerty-Princesse d’Ombree) with Camille Levesque aboard for trainer Thomas and owner Pierre Levesque. Race time was 1.14.4kr. Darhley du Rib (5f Ganymede-Quille Castelets) with J.L.Cl. Dersoir in the irons was second, that one a Joel Hallais trainee that Ecurie Rib owns. Dayana Berry (5f  Scipion Goutier-Ider du Corte) landed third for J.Y. Ricart and owner/trainer J-M Bazire. The winning jockey attacked past the midway point, gained the front and held gamely at the line. The Gr. II monte Prix Jacques Andrieu (purse €120,000, 2850 meters, Internationale) showcased Arlington Dream (8g Ready Cash-Ialla Clairchamp) as he came from last and a 25 meter penalty to bury the opposition once again, scoring in 1.12.7kr, with Yoann Lebourgeois up. Philippe Allaire trains for Frederic Sauque as 3/5 favoritre Arlington Dream recorded his 17 career win now for €757,800 earned. He bested Vrai Voyou (9g Gazouillis-Oranginette) with Adrien Lamy in the irons for trainer P.E. Mary off at 8.1/1, and third finishing 19/1 Ariane de Caponet (8f One du Rib-Noya de Joudes) with Matthieu Abrivard up. Fractions were rated except the mid-race portion when Arlington Dream powered wide to the front and accelerated to a huge advantage that he maintained to the line(1.13.2kr at the 1500 to go mark; 1.11.9kr at the 1000 meters remaining, 1.12.2kr with 500 to go) in an overpowering performance. The monte Prix Tidalium Pelo (apprentice jockeys, purse €62,000, 2850 meters, 18 starters) closed the program and went to 8.5/1 Viking du Pilet (9g Kuadro Wild) with Theo Peltier up. Yann Docquin owns and trains the winner that was timed in 1.13.6kr. 5.5/1 Ange Karlann (8g Diamant Gede) took second for Mlle. Ludivine Drapier and third was earned by 3.9/1 Vivaric du Bellay (9g Nil du Rib) with Arthur Rebeche up for trainer A.A. David. Thomas H. Hicks

January 22, 2018 - Monday’s featured Prix de Cavaillon at Vincennes (purse €65,000, 2100 meters autostart, 14 starters) went to 6.2/1 Extasy d’Ourville (4f Tucson-Mona d’Odyssee) with David Thomain up for trainer Sebastien Guarato and Ecurie J.P. Raffre. Race time was 1.12.5kr as the winner easily bested 14/1 Elande Piencourt (4f Opium-Una Bella Jain) for trainer/driver Matthieu Abrivard ans owner Robert Malherbe. Third was 117/1 Energy du Bouffey (4f Scipion du Goutier-Soraya du Bouffy) for Michel Lenoir. The day began in the fog and heavy rain the created a visually surreal setting. The Prix de Sainte-Gauburge (claiming, purse €20,000, 2700 meters,14 starters) went to 7.1/1 Auteur Compositeu (8g Rocklyn-Pazing) for Mlle Marion Donabedian for trainer Kevyn Thonnerieux and owner Yves Beck. 3.8/1 Boss du Marny (7g Rocklyn-Queens du Marny) was second for Mlle Adele Doyere ahead of fast closing 15/1 Angel Dark (8g Look de Star) driven by Jorgen Berggren for co-owner/trainer Anders Lindqvist. Race time was 1.16kr. Thomas H. Hicks  

January 18, 2018 - Today’s harness racing featured Q+ Prix Jean Paul Bertrand (purse €55,000, 2700 meters, 17 starters) went to 1.13.8kr timed 24/1 odds Costa Haufor (6f Saphir d’Haufor-Santa Haufor) driven by Christian J. Bigeon for breeder/owner/trainer Charles J. Bigeon. 10/1 Calizza Boko (6f Qwerty-Trancosa Boko) was a close second for J.Ph. Monclin and owner Mme. Camilla Vikstron and trainer Ph. Billard. 26/1 Carina du Parc (6f Roc Meslois)  and driver Franck Ouvrie ended third with the next two spots going to 74/1 Culture du Clos, Franck Anne up, and 60/1 Cats de la Ferme, with plot Pierre Vercruysse. That  finish set up a “fine” Q+ exact order payoff (below). One race later trainer/driver Christian Bigeon won the Prix Louis Cussinet (purse €55,000, 2100 meters autostart) with his 3/2 odds Dornella de Janze (5f Un Amour d’Haufor) timed in 1.14.7kr. Christian Bigeon now has three wins in seven 2017 starts as driver. The Vincennes’ Prix Jean Pierre Reynaldo (purse €60,000, 2700 meters, 14 starters) went to 1.13.4kr timed 2.6/1 odds Desperado (5m Kasado Phedo-Sirella) with trainer J-M Bazire up. Mlle Magali Moureaux bred and owns the winner. 9/1 Darlington Park (5g Orlando Vici-Inrosa Girl) was second for Franck Nivard and breeder/owner Mme. Michelle Stihl. 18/1 Dexter des Baux (5g Querido des Baux) took third for Mathieu Mottier and trainer Franck Nivard. On Wednesday at Vienna Austria was the Prix Paris (purse €5,500, 1600 meters autostart, 12 starters). The 1.13.8kr timed and 4/5 favorite Delux Ms (6g Coktail Jet-Divna Ms) scored for Mitja Slavic, the owner/driver, and trainer Marko Slavic Jr. 3.7/1 Mister Big Yankee (5g Muscles Yankee-Lady Medal) was second for Christoph Fischer and trainer Gregor Krennmayr. 12/1 Lady Muscles (5f Muscle Hill-Chieftess) was a very distant third for Gerhard Mayr. On Tuesday some great veterans competed in the Prix Achille Cassart at Mons Ghlin (purse €7,200, 2850 meters, 10 starters). 9/10 favorite Ustinof du Vivier (10g Look de Star-Melba du Vivier) was a 1.16.1kr timed winner for Joseph Verbeeck and Union Stable. Jean Yves Lecuyer bred this 35 time winner in 94 starts for €1,070,440 earned. 3/1 Ru de l’Airou (13g Cygnus d’Odyssee-Cour d’Intheville) was second fow owner/driver Sven Hoste, this one a 41 time career winner for €866,672. 83/1 Maffioso Face (9g Revenue-Nouchka) was third for Daniel Parling. At Gelsenkirchen on Tuesday was the featured Internationaler January (purse €7,000, 2000 meters, eight starters) and the 1.17kr timed winner was 5/2 Lotus Star (10g Look de Star-Lotusblute) for driver Tim Schwarma and owner Tim Raulf. 1.1/1 favorite Dream Magic BE (9m Dream Vacation-Dantesca CLA) took second for trainer/driver Mike Lenders. 6.5/1 Alaska Joe (10g Timberland) was third for Michael Nimczyk. Thomas H. Hicks               

December 31, 2017 - Today’s solid Vincennes New Year’s Eve harness racing undercard began with the Prix de Cresserons (purse €70,000, 2100 meters autostart, eight starters-four year olds) and 16/1 Dellaro Vedaquais (4g Ready Cash-Spandelle) rallied up for J.Ph. Monclin to score timed in a fast 1.11.5kr. Philippe Allaire is owner/trainer and J-P Guay bred the winner. 4/5 favorite Dexter Chatho (4g Un Amour d’Haufor-Okoyama) held second for owner/trainer/driver Christian Bigeon. 108/1 Danseur du Houlbet (4g Rodrigo Jet-Rosa du Houlbet) was third for Alexis Pratt and driver Frederic Pratt. The monte Prix de l’Etrier d’Or 2017 (purse €80,000, 2700 meters, 10 starters) went to 1.14.3kr timed and 5.3/1 Chalimar de Guez (5g Nahar de Beval-Phebe de Guez) with J-Y Ricart in the irons for trainer J-M Bazire and Ecurie Vautors. 16/1 Cash du Rib (5g Ready Cash-Quille Castelets) ended second for J.L.Cl. Dersoir, also trainer. 20/1 Creation (5f Rieussec-Ovation) was third for Camille Levesque and trainer J.G. Eeckhaute. The Prix de Limours (purse €54,000, 2100 meters autostart, 18 starters) went to quick 1.12.6kr timed and 19/1 Altesse du Banney (7f Niky-Diva d’Isques) with trainer P-Y Verva up for breeder/owner Michel Gabillot. 26/1 Auro Normande (7f Ready Cash-Normandia) was second for owner/trainer/driver Eric Lambertz. Third was 9/1 Aldo d’Argentre (7m Qualmio de Vandel) for Adrien Lamy. El Santo Haufor (3g Paris Haufor-Santa Haufor) took the Prix du Sulky d’Or 2017 (purse €44,000, 2700 meters, 13 starters) at 1.1/1 odds for breeder/owner/trainer/driver Christian Bigeon. Race time was 1.15.4kr. 18/1 Espoir Fou (3m Love You-Rebelle) was second for David Thomain, trainer Sebastien Guarato, owner Pierre Pilarski and Scuderia Bolgheri Srl was the breeder. 15/1 Estaban Jiel (3m Coktail Jet-Nirkonia Jiel) was third for Franck Ouvrie. Two year olds contested the Prix de Chatellerault (purse €42,000, 2850 meters, eight starters) and 5/1 Fantastic Life (2f Prodigious-True Life) scored for breeder/driver Jean Philippe Dubois as the rain and light snow occurred at Vincennes. Timed in 1.18.9kr the winner recorded her second win along with four placings in six 2017 starts for Ecurie Victoria Dreams and trainer Philippe Moulin. Two year olds also were in action at Cagnes-sur-Mer in the Prix de Rimplas (purse €18,000, 2150 meters autostart, 14 entrants) with victory to 1.1/1 favorite Funky Girl (2f Uhlan du Val-My Lovely Girl) timed in 1.17.9kr for breeder/owner/trainer/driver Louis Baudron. This filly now has two wins and a placing in three career appearances. My Lovely Girl (Coktail Jet-Guilty Of Love) is a well-bred full sister to Love You, Nice Love and Repeat Love. Baudron (owner/trainer/driver) returned to win the Prix des Lutins (purse €18,000, 2925 meters, 14 starters) with the 12/1 and 1.17.5kr timed Enigme Jenilou (3f Royal Dream-Pirogue Jenilou), her third career victory in 11 outings. Pirogue Jenilou (by Blue Eyes America) won €601,567 and was a major performer (At 3, third in Criterium des Jeunes, Prix Roquépine. at 4, Winner of Criterium des 4 ans, second in Prix Ariste Hémard, Prix de Sélection). 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 10, 2017 - Today’s Prix Octave Douesnel (Gr. II, four year olds, purse €120,000, 2700 meters) resulted in a blanket finish with victory to the 1/2 harness racing favorite Django Riff (4m Ready Cash-Rasta Perrine). Away at the end driver Yoann Lebourgeois moved the winner to the outside at the halfway point and he reached the death seat at head of the lane. But, his inner leading adversary 6.9/1 Delfino (4m Speedy Blue-Miss Volo) would not yield easily and just missed as he battled back for Mathieu Mottier and breeder/owner/trainer Dominique Mottier. Third was 13/1 Doberman (4m Prodigious-Quietude Mesloise) for Franck Nivard and fourth was 8.5/1 Discours Joyeux (4m Goetmals Wood-Quelle Copine) for Eric Raffin. Race time was 1.15.2kr off modest even fractions. Django Riff now has 16 career wins in 34 starts for €1,139,500 earned. Earlier on the card was the Prix des Jacinthes (purse €40,000, 2700 meters, two year olds) and the 1.18.2kr timed and 4.8/1 odds winner was the unchecked impressive Faithful (2m Village Mystic-Horsaca) handled by breeder/owner/trainer Louis Baudron. Faithful now has two wins in three career starts. 4/5 favorite Fleuron d’Ironise (2m Kaisy Dream-Star des Charmes) was second for J-M Bazire and owner/trainer William Bigeon. 5.3/1 Fifty Kalouma (2m Ready Cash-Sadaya de Cerisy) was third for Thierry Duvaldestin. Thomas H. Hicks

December 7, 2017 - Today’s Quinte+ Prix de Blois (purse 95,000 euro, 2100 meters, 18 European starters) went to 3.4/1 Une Serenade (9f Gazouillis-Moonlight Serenade) driven by Eric Raffin for harness racing trainer Serge Peltier. Race time was a sharp 1.11kr. Une Serenade recorded her 17th career win in 75 starts now for 553,180 euro earned. 5/1 Vulcain de Vandel (8m Jag de Bellouet) was second for Franck Nivard and trainer Benjamin Goetz. Third was 2.3/1 Day Or Night In (5m Muscle Hill-Ellie America) for trainer/driver Johan Untersteiner. 51/1 Caduceus des Baux and 39/1 Romanesque were fourth and fifth.The Prix de Murat (purse 54,000 euro, 2850 meters, 18 European starters) at Vincennes went to 1.1/1 Bauloise Haufor (6f Kool du Caux-Hutesse des Pres) for Charles J. Bigeon and breeder/owner/trainer Christian Bigeon, continuing a stream of Bigeon victories. Race time was 1.13.9kr. 12/1 Babylone Seven (6f Oiseau de Feux) was second for J-M Bazire, also trainer. 10/1 Easytowin (6f Offshore Dream-Victory My Way) took third for Dion P. Tesselaar, the trainer/driver. The Prix de Saint-Aubin les Elbeuf (purse 85,000 euro, 2850 meters, 11 starters) went to 2.1/1 Cash Maker (5g Coktail Jet-Salt Lake City) timed in 1.15.2kr for trainer/driver Sebastian Ernault. NV Hicewa is breeder/owner of the winner. 19/1 Candidat d’Ortige (5m Giant Cat) was second for Franck Nivard and trainer Franck Leblanc. 5.4/1 Cerenzo Turbo (5m Ganymede) was third for J-M Bazire. Sunday’s Prix du Bourbonnais field is now complete with the following lineup: December 10 Course 6 - Paris-Vincennes, Gr. II International, purse 120,000 euro, 2850 meters Starter/Driver/Trainer Spartan Kronos, Conrad Lugauer driver/trainer Uza Josselyn, Alexandre Abrivard, R. Aebischer Briac Dark, Matthieu Abrivard, Thierry Duvaldestin Charly du Noyer, Yoann Lebourgeois, Philippe Allaire Carat Williams, David Thomain, Sebastien Guarato Ringostarr Treb, Gabriele Gelormini, Jerry Riordan Bilibili, L.Cl. Abrivard trainer/driver Booster Winner, Mathieu Mottier, Sebastien Guarato Valko Jenilat, Eric Raffin, Sebastien Guarato Propulsion, Orjan Kihlstrom, David Reden Belina Josselyn, J-M Bazire trainer/driver Akim du Cap Vert, Franck Anne trainer/driver Lionel, Bjorn Goop, David Reden Votigeur de Myrt, Lorenzo Donati, Roberto Donati Wild Honey, Franck Ouvrie, Daniel Reden Bird Parker, J.Ph. Monclin, Philippe Allaire Bold Eagle, Franck Nivard, Sebastien Guarato   The upcoming weekend Paris-Vincennes program includes six groupe events: December 9 Prix Raoul Balliere, Gr. II, 120,000 euro purse, 2175 meters Criterium des 3 Ans, Gr. I, 240,000 euro purse, 2700 meters Prix Ariste Hemard, Gr. II, 120,000 euro purse, 2700 meters Prix Narquois, Gr. III, purse 95,000 euro, 2700 meters December 10 Prix Octave Douesnel, Gr. II, 120,000 euro purse, 2700 meters Grand Prix du Bourbonnais, Gr. II, purse 120,000 euro, 2850 meters Today’s top action in Italy was at Milano for two year olds. The Gran Criterium Filly (purse 77,000 euro, 1650 meters autostart) went to pacesetting Ziva EK (2f Varenne-Gianna di Jesolo-Diamond Way) timed in 1.15.4kr for a four length victory. Alessandro Gocciadoro teamed the winner. Zarina Roc (2f Filipp Roc-Gressy Roc-Crowning Classic) and Zenobia Font (2f Ganymede-Dionea-Park Avenue Joe) were second and third, The companion Gran Criterium Open (purse 187,000 euro, 1650 meters autostart) went to Zarenne FAS (2m Varenne-Muscle FAS-Muscles Yankee)  with Federico Minopoli up. Zazza’Del Pino (2f Nad Al Sheba-Galaxy del Pino-Lemon Dra) and Zekante EK (2m Saxo de Vandel-Freedom EK-Bon Vivant)  finished second and third. On December 6 the Q+ Prix de Saint-Jean de Monts (purse 42,000 euro, 2700 meters, 15 starters) went to 1.14.6kr clocked and 9/1 Daisy Team (4f Timoko-Daisy Chain) reined by owner/trainer/driver Julien Dubois. 15/1 Donostia de Lou (4f Real de Lou) was second for trainer/driver Anthony Dollion. 40/1 Dune de L’Aunay (4f Loulou Jet) took third for Anthony Barrier and owner/trainer Vincent Raimboult.  Daytona Dodville and Drajanie were fourth and fifth.The Prix de la Ville de Royan (purse 50,000 euro, 2850 meters) on this card went to 1.4/1 Bahamas Quick (6f Pim Quick-Koorla Kine) teamed by Franck Nivard for trainer Franck Leblanc and Ecurie Quick Star, the breeder/owner. 3.2/1 Siebella Park (6f Varenne-Grandera Park) took second for J-M Bazire and Team Minopoli. 78/1 Bodega Chenevie was third. On December 5 at Paris-Vincennes was the Prix des Gardenias (two year olds, purse 33,000 euro, 2100 meters autostart) produced victory for Future Darling (2f Goetmals Wood-Romance Darling), her second straight, for driver Matthieu Abrivard. The 1.16.1kr timed winner is trained by Yves Boireau for owner Jean Pierre Dubois. The Q+ this day was the Prix des Pyrenees (purse 50,000 euro, 2850 meters) and the 1.14kr timed winner was Be Bop Haufor for the red hot Bigeon stable, this one handled by owner/trainer/driver Christian Bigeon. 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 20, 2017 - The featured harness racing Prix Edmond Henry (monte, Gr, II, purse €120,000, 2700 meters, eight starters) went to even-money odds Traders (5m Ready Cash-Graziella) and his jockey Yoann Lebourgeois. This horse, that once bested Bold Eagle, is owned and trainer by Philippe Allaire. 8/1 Bilibili (6g Niky-Quetty du Donjon) was second ridden by Alexandre Abrivard for breeder/owner Jean Pierre Barjon and trainer L.Cl. Abrivard. Third was 20.6/1 Bohemian Rhapsody (6f Niky-Kuela Lumpur) and Camille Levesque for owner/breeder Pierre Levesque and trainer Thomas Levesque. Traders, by this win, claims a bid to the lucrative Grand Prix de Cornulier the Sunday before the Prix d’Amerique, that carries a purse of €700,000 and is the richest monte event in the world. The Prix de Cornulier began in 1931 and has showcased legendary winners such as three time victors Jag de Bellouet. Kaiser Trot, Bellino II and well known double winners such as Roxane Grif. Tidalium Pelo, Tabriz, Dream With Me and others. The last five winners are shown below (Wikipedia file): Year Winner S/A Time Sire Jockey Trainer Owner Second Third 2017 Bellissima France F.6 1'13" Blue Dream Matthieu Abrivard Matthieu Abrivard Écurie Abrivard Tornade du Digeon Bilibili 2016 Scarlet Turgot F.10 1'12"9 Dahir de Prélong Alexandre Abrivard Yannick-Alain Briand Thérèse Hoste Astor du Quenne Attentionally 2015 Roxane Griff F.10 1'13"3 Ténor de Baune Éric Raffin Sébastien Guarato Écurie Griff Tiégo d'Étang Talicia Bella 2014 Roxane Griff F.9 1'12"3 Ténor de Baune Éric Raffin Sébastien Guarato Écurie Griff Tiégo d'Étang Saphir de Morge 2013 Singalo M.7 1'12"4 Goetmals Wood David Thomain Louis Baudron Louis Baudron Quarry Bay Scolie de Bassière   On the November 20 card at Vincennes was the Q+ Prix de Montignac-Chorente (purse €88,000, 2700 meters, 18 starters) and 5/1 Balbir (6g Ganymede-Manzir) scored timed in 1.13.9kr for trainer/driver Mickael Cormy and owner Ecurie de Vieux Chene. 58.2/1 Quick Fix (8g From Above-Glued) was a close second for Dominik Locqueneux and trainer Lutfi Kolgjini. 2.3/1 Bakchich (6g Quopeck-Paux de Villeneuve) was third for Yoann Lebourgeois and trainer J.M. Legros. 32.1/1 Tell Me No Lies and 20.1/1 Anette du Mirel were fourth and fifth to the line. Also on the PV program was the Prix de Loudun (purse €60,000, 2850 meters, 13 strarters) and the 1.16.5kr timed victory went to 1.3/1 Dark Night Love (4f Royal Lover-Querida de Vonnas) with trainer Jean Michel Bazire up. Thomas H. Hicks

November 19, 2017 - Harness racing Groupe action began this day with the Gr. II Prix Jacques de Vauloge (purse €120,000. 2700 meters) and 16/1 Easy des Racques (3m Rodrigo Jet-Ombre des Racques) scored timed in 1.14.4kr for driver J.Ph. Monclin. 3/5 favorite Ecu Pierji (3m Tucson-Tosca Pierji) was second for pilot Mathieu Mottier, trainer Sebastien Guarato and owner Philippe Dewulf. 3.6/1 Express Jet (3m Goetmals Wood-Run For Jet) rallied to gain third for driver/trainer Pierre Vercruysse and Ecurie Opale. The Gr. II Prix Annick Dreux (purse €130,000, 2700 meters) and the 1.14kr timed winner was 3/10 favorite Erming d’Oliverie (3f Scipion du Goutier-Theze d’Oliverie) with Mathieu Mottier up. Franck Leblanc trains the winner for Ecurie de l’Oliverie. 27.3/1 Exotic Destination (3f Love You-Quiromantica) was a fast rallying second for Matthieu Abrivard. Yves Boireau trains this one for breeder/owner Jean-Pierre Dubois. 28.7/1 Estelada de Font (3f Orateur-Quibala Street) and trainer/driver Emmanuelle Allard finished third. Fractions were even. The Prix de Cosse le Vivien (purse €75,000, 2100 meters autostart, 17 European starters), a solid conditioned event, went to 1.12.3kr timed and 7/10 favorite Bel Avis (6g Ganymede-Gloria Marie) with J-M Bazire up for legendary Wildenstein Stables Ltd Ireland. 12.5/1 Blues d’Ourville (6g Password-Pursuit of Charm) and 10.8/1 Blue Story (6f Opium-Loumana Flor) were second and third. The Gr. III Prix de Bossy Saint Leger (purse €95,000, 2100 meters autostart, European), the last of the day’s groupe events, went to 51.9/1 Delia du Pommereux (4f Niky-Noune du Pommereux) reined by trainer Sylvain Roger for breeder/owner Noel Lolic. Race time was 1.12kr off quick and steady fractions. 4.7/1 Tessy d’Ete (5f Ganymede-Love me Tender) held second closely for J-M Bazire, trainer Philippe Billard and Scuderia Eurocolor Srl. Third was 6.5/1 Comtesse du Chene (5f Quaker Jet-Imperiale du Chene) with David Thomain up for trainer Julien LeMer and breeder/owner Claude Guedj. 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 9, 2017 - Today’s Gr. II monte Prix Olry-Roederer (purse €120,000, 2850 meters, nine European starters) drew a superb harness racing field and victory went to Dexter Fromentro (4m Qwerty-Princesse d’Ombree) and jockey Camille Levesque. Thomas Levesque trains and Pierre Levesque owns the 1.16.3kr timed winner that was off at 9/2 odds. 6.3/1 Dragon d’Avril (4m Thorens Vedaquais) was second with Adrien Lamy up for Sebastien Houyvet, the owner/trainer. Third was 6/1 Dreamer Delo (4m Ready Cash-Reverie d’Ar) and jocket Damien Bonne. The 1.4/1 favorite Darlhey du Rib was a misque dq. The day’s Q+ was also at Vincennes this day and the Prix de Cognac (purse €55,000, 2850 meters, 14 starters) went to 2.1/1 Viking Fromentro (8g Capriccio-Ormindia) for driver Pierre Levesque and trainer Thomas Levesque, quite a fine day for the Levesque team.  4.3/1 Balando was second for Dominik Locqueneux and third was 44/1 As de Godisson and driver Laurent Verva. Q+ payoffs follow. Thomas H. Hicks    

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