Game Starter and Morgan Le Faye among Longchamp contenders
Promising stayers Game Starter and Morgan Le Faye feature among four Godolphin runners in the supporting Group races at Longchamp, France, on Sunday, 9 September.
Game Starter (Saeed bin Suroor/Oisin Murphy) steps up to an extended 15 furlongs for the G3 Prix Gladiateur after coming home second on his seasonal return in a Windsor Listed race over half a mile shorter on 25 August.
The four-year-old Dubawi colt was successful on all three of his appearances in 2017, gaining impressive victories in handicaps over 10 furlongs at Newmarket and a mile and a half at Doncaster.
Morgan Le Faye (Andre Fabre/Mickael Barzalona), a four-year-old daughter of Shamardal, kept on to finish fourth behind sable companion Kitesurf in the G2 Darley Prix de Pomone over 12 and a half furlongs at Deauville on 19 August.
She has twice been runner-up at Listed level, including when going down by a length and three quarters to Against Rules in the Prix Denisy, run over the same distance as the Prix Gladiateur, at Saint-Cloud in November.
The Godolphin duo oppose seven others including Holdthasigreen and Nearly Caught, who were first and third in the G2 Darley Prix Kergorlay, plus Chantilly Listed winner Called To The Bar and Against Rules.
Saeed bin Suroor commented: “Game Starter ran well at Windsor and has come on for his first start of the year.
“This is another step up in class, but it looks a nice race for him. He has been working well and I am hoping that he can win.”
Lisa-Jane Graffard of Godolphin said: “Morgan Le Faye ran a very good race last time out and we have always felt that she would be a nice filly for the autumn.
“The ground might be slightly quick for her, but she has a nice turn of foot and stays this trip.”
Charlie Appleby sends out two first-time winners on the card’s juvenile Group races.
Ceratonia (William Buick), a half-sister to Wild Illusion, runs in the mile G3 Prix d’Aumale after staying on well to score by a half a length in a seven-furlong contest at Ascot on 27 July.
Court Poet (William Buick) quickened smartly to comfortably take a mile novice race on Polytrack at Chelmsford City on 1 September and the Dubawi colt makes a quick reappearance over the same trip in the G3 Prix des Chenes.
Charlie Appleby said: “Ceratonia won nicely on her only start to date and we feel that the step up to a mile is going to suit. This will help us to see where we are with her and the race should hopefully be a nice stepping stone for the future.
“Court Poet only won last week, but came out of the race very well and we felt that this was a nice opportunity to step up to Group company.”