Sunway in ‘good place’ for ParisLongchamp raid

By Sports Desk April 06, 2024

Sunway will be out to keep Classic dreams alive when he returns to action in the Prix la Force at ParisLongchamp on Sunday.

David Menuisier’s colt highlighted his ability right from the beginning of his two-year-old campaign and although fluffing his lines in the Pat Eddery Stakes at Ascot, was back to his best when second in a soft-ground Champagne Stakes at Doncaster in September.

He ended the season by striking at the highest level in Saint-Cloud’s Criterium International and it is no surprise the son of Galiway heads back to France for the first outing of his Classic season in the hands of regular big-race pilot Oisin Murphy.

“The horse seems well and he had a stretch of the legs at Kempton the other day and we were very pleased with him,” said Menuisier.

“He’s in a good place for a first run and we will be keeping our fingers crossed.

“It is famous last words, but the ground shouldn’t be an issue. It will be hard on the horses but we feel ours goes on it quite good and the trip shouldn’t be a problem, so we go there quite positive.”

Sunway holds an entry for the Qipco 2000 Guineas at Newmarket in early May, but Menuisier would like to keep treading a continental path with his star colt, with a return to his homeland for the French Derby at Chantilly high up on the three-year-old’s list of priorities.

“Later down the line, we would like to aim at the Prix du Jockey Club, but we need to take races one by one, obviously,” he added.

“We could drop back in trip to run in one of the Guineas or we could go up in trip to run in a Derby trial next month. It will all depend on what happens this weekend and what Oisin and the owners think – and then we will take it from there.”

There is plenty of British interest in the French capital on Sunday afternoon and Charlie Appleby’s one-time Derby hopeful Military Order will continue his recovery mission in the Prix d’Harcourt.

A winner of three of his first four starts, the son of Frankel was sent off at 9-2 when disappointing at Epsom last summer.

Another failure at Chester followed, but having been gelded over the winter, he has produced two encouraging displays on the all-weather, landing the Winter Derby at Southwell most recently.

Rivals in the 10-furlong Group Two include Grand Prix de Paris winner Feed The Flame and Patrice Cottier’s multiple winner and Champion Stakes third Horizon Dore, with Military Order one of two Godolphin candidates alongside Andre Fabre’s Birr Castle.

“Military Order goes into this in good shape on the back of his Winter Derby success,” Appleby told

“Conditions will be testing in Paris, although he handled soft ground at Newbury last season.”

Karl Burke’s Molten Rock will attempt to build on her encouraging third in Newmarket’s Montrose Stakes on her return to action in the Group Three Prix Vanteaux, while both Jack Channon’s Gather Ye Rosebuds and Kevin Philippart De Foy’s Ermesinde will take part in the Listed Prix Zarkava.

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    In a press conference on Monday addressing the abandoned races, SVREL Executive Chairman Solomon Sharpe expressed frustration with the rule, highlighting its potential impact on the racing industry.

    "This rule, unique to Jamaica, imposes a strict five-minute limit after the published post time for races at Caymanas Park," Sharpe stated. "It fails to account for various factors that can delay race starts and penalizes all stakeholders when races are abandoned, affecting punters, jockeys, grooms, trainers, owners, promoters, and the government."

    Last year, Caymanas Park contributed over $260 million in combined taxes to the government's coffers. Sharpe urged the JRC to engage SVREL in discussions on Rule 44, emphasizing the need for constructive dialogue to address the rule's impact.

    "We were not consulted during the initial discussions on this rule, and now, with two races abandoned in a single race day, our concerns have materialized," Sharpe explained. "SVREL is open to collaborating with the JRC to review and refine this amended rule."

    Representatives from the Grooms Association, Jockeys Association, and the United Racehorse Trainers Association echoed SVREL's concerns and supported the call for a review of Rule 44.

    Sharpe concluded by appealing to regulators, stakeholders, and the public to support the growth of the horseracing industry in Jamaica. "Horseracing has immense potential in Jamaica and can become a significant foreign exchange earner. Realizing this potential requires collaboration among all stakeholders."

    SVREL has been operating Caymanas Park since March 2017 after the government divested the property. With investments exceeding J$4 billion in product enhancements and innovations like the Mouttet Mile, which boasts the largest purse in the English-speaking Caribbean, SVREL remains committed to advancing the horseracing experience in Jamaica.

  • Supreme Ventures Racing regrets abandonment of two races at Caymanas Park on Saturday Supreme Ventures Racing regrets abandonment of two races at Caymanas Park on Saturday

    Supreme Ventures Racing & Entertainment Limited (SVREL) has expressed regret and disappointment following the abandonment of two races during the Saturday, April 27 race day at Caymanas Park in St Catherine, Jamaica.

    The decision to abandon these races, SVREL said, was made in compliance with regulations set forth by the Jamaica Racing Commission (JRC), leading to the refund of all related pools according to SVREL's Pari-mutuel rules.

    According to the statement released by SVREL late Saturday, the abandonment of races number one and six, respectively, was declared by the stewards of the Jamaica Racing Commission (JRC) due to delays that exceeded the permitted time frame as stipulated by Rule 44(iii).

    Specifically, in race number one, scheduled to commence at 12:00 pm, a saddling issue with horse number five and a mandatory veterinary check for horse number eight, which reared and fell after exiting the saddling barn, resulted in delays beyond the allowable limit.

    Similarly, race number six, slated for 3:10 pm, was delayed due to a horse running loose, ultimately leading to its abandonment by the stewards of the JRC.

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    Kitty’s Light is taking aim at his usual season finisher in the bet365 Gold Cup at Sandown.

    The gelding has been a star for trainer Christian Williams, winning big handicap events like the Eider Chase and the Scottish Grand National and going close in the Charlie Hall and the Coral Trophy.

    He has particularly good record in the bet365 Gold Cup on the final day of the season, missing out only due to interference when second in 2021 and coming home third in 2022.

    Last year he was completed the set of podium finishes when winning by two and a half lengths under usual jockey Jack Tudor.

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    “We were thrilled, the horse tried his best and we were very, very proud of horse and jockey.

    “He’s come out of it very well, if the race was run today even then he’d be running, he’s in good form.

    “He loves it at Sandown with the big fences, his jumping has come on now but even as a five-year-old he nearly won the race.

    “He was third the year after that, it really seems to suit him.

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    “We’re taking our chance anyway, he seems well and we’ll hope for the best.”

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