suesa-all-set-for-abbaye-challenge

Suesa all set for Abbaye challenge

Francois Rohaut considers Suesa to be the chief French challenger in the Prix de l’Abbaye at ParisLongchamp on Sunday.

The three-year-old was unbeaten on French turf until May, taking four races including the Prix Sigy and the Prix Texanita – both Group Three events.

Her unbeaten run was ended at Royal Ascot in June when she was eighth in the Commonwealth Cup, but she bounced back to take the Group Two King George Stakes at Goodwood in late July.

A run in the Nunthorpe Stakes then produced a fourth-placed finish as the filly was drawn wide and eventually came home two and a half lengths behind Winter Power.

“She looks great, she’s very happy and quiet and everything’s perfect,” Rohaut told Sky Sports Racing.

“She came out (of York) well, we’ll just forget that race as she had a bad draw.

“We’ll just forget it, she is as well as she was before Goodwood.

“I am very happy with her – she looks much better and much stronger, she is improving I think.

“She’s probably the best French contender, I don’t really focus on who is going to run and who will like the ground, she will run her best.”

The going at Longchamp is currently described as a mixture of good and good to soft and more rain is due to fall, but Rohaut is not concerned about conditions as his runner is a proven performer on heavier ground.

“She won three times on very soft going, so I’m not worried about the ground, if the rain does come it could be even better for her,” he said.

Though this weekend’s race will be Suesa’s last of the season, Rohaut is already looking forward to beginning her next campaign at Royal Ascot in June.

“I think we’ll keep her next season and in that case her first target is probably the King’s Stand,” he said.

“She’s as good over both (five and six furlongs), she won’t stay six furlongs at Ascot because they’re going uphill, but on a flat track she can stay six furlongs.”

Suesa is one of 17 still in contention for the Abbaye, with British hopes including Sprint Cup winner Emaraaty Ana and Glass Slippers from Kevin Ryan’s yard, Tim Easterby’s Nunthorpe victor Winter Power, Karl Burke’s pair of Dandalla and Lady In France, plus the Adrian Nicholls-trained Mo Celita.

Andre Fabre’s Raclette – a filly he rates as one of the best he has trained – is among 10 contenders for the Prix Marcel Boussac.

Oscula, who finished third in last week’s Rockfel Stakes, has been left in both the Boussac and the Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere by trainer George Boughey.

She is one of three fillies in that seven-furlong heat which is headlined by Phoenix Stakes winner Ebro River for Hugo Palmer.

A total of 15 fillies and mares are in the mix for the Prix de l’Opera, including last year’s third Audarya for James Fanshawe and Aidan O’Brien’s French Oaks winner Joan Of Arc.

Space Blues is a short-priced favourite for the Prix de la Foret over seven furlongs with other familiar names including Kinross, Thunder Moon and Pearls Galore.