Reynier eye Champion Stakes for Skalleti

All that Jerome Reynier has on his mind is revenge against Skalleti as he spotted the Qipco Champion Stakes at Ascot later in the month as the grey’s long-term aim.

Skalleti came second to Addeybb last autumn in what was the first attempt of the six-year-old at a Group One and the Kendargent gelding ensured its second time lucky with a last-gasp victory on Sunday in the Prix d’Ispahan at ParisLongchamp.

Skalleti cause heartache to the British-trained duo of Tilsit and My Oberon notwithstanding the inadequate distance of the race, unsuitable conditions, and the inconvenience of losing a racing plate during the course of the race.

Reynier said via Sky Sports, “We knew the trip was going to be a bit short and the ground a bit too firm for him,”

“He was the only horse who came from behind because most of the winners made all. He has done something special because he lost a shoe as well entering the final straight.

“He’s just a very genuine horse and a champion for us. He still remains unbeaten in Longchamp and remains unbeaten as a six-year-old this year, so it’s very exciting.

“We are going to give him a break now – he deserves it. Maybe we’ll be back in Deauville in August for the Prix Gontaut-Biron he won last year beating Sottsass, or maybe we’ll go another route. We will see how he comes back from this race. We will take it easy with him.”

Speaking on the Ascot’s Champion Stakes, Reynier disclosed: “We would like to take our revenge that day.

“I’m not sure we will run him two weeks prior to that race in the Prix Dollar because two big races in two weeks is a lot. We will see how he is at that time.”

Reynier has Group One hopes for Marianafoot after the six-year-old entire finished a five-timer in the Group Three Prix du Palais-Royal at Paris Long champ on the same card, and this could used for the punters trying some racing quizzes in the long run.

Marseille-based Reynier said, “It’s unbelievable the way he has been racing this year. He’s getting better and better. We knew he was spot on and we are very happy with him,”

“He deserved to win a Group race and now we are going for a Group One in the Prix Maurice de Gheest in Deauville. That will be his target for this year.”

Meanwhile, Epsom clerk of the course Andrew Cooper has started watering the track for this weekend’s Cazoo Derby Festival.

The going was described well across the racecourse, but a warm afternoon and the reducing likelihood of rainfall later in the week has caused Cooper to start irrigation.

The ground is described as good for the two-day race which begins on Friday and hosts the Derby meeting on Saturday – and only those parts which are a little quicker will be the target during the initial watering of the course.

“At nine o’clock yesterday morning I’d have called the ground good,” said Cooper.

“Yesterday was a dry, sunny day here. Temperatures got up to about 20 degrees – and it was a lovely, sunny afternoon.

“We dried out a bit more – and as of nine o’clock this morning, if we were racing here today I’d call it good, good to firm in places.

“You’ve only got to look at the going reports up and down the country and see that a lot of the Flat courses are heading into that territory, so that’s not unexpected at all. It’s exactly where I’d have expected us to be, given the weather in the last week.”

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