Telecaster delights Morrison with victory on latest French assignment

Sun 30 Aug 2020

Telecaster produced a commanding, front-running performance to win the Group Two Lucien Barriere Grand Prix de Deauville.

Hughie Morrison’s stable star was short-priced favourite to win his second Pattern race of the season on his trips to France, following the Group Three La Coupe at ParisLongchamp in June.

Again ridden by Christophe Soumillon, this time Telecaster was sent straight to the front on only his second attempt at a mile and a half, having run moderately over that distance in last year’s Derby.

He appeared to relish both the heavy ground and change in tactics, holding the lead into the straight and then coming further clear to win by six and a half lengths from Soft Light, with last year’s winner Ziyad back in third.

A slight disappointment on his previous start when only fourth in a Group Two over 10 and a half furlongs at York a month ago, the Dante winner emphatically restated his credentials as a top-level performer.

Bookmakers were quick off the mark in response, with a 16-1 quote from Paddy Power for Ascot’s Champion Stakes.

That does not appear a likely prospect, however, with Morrison stressing he believes Telecaster is a mile-and-a-half horse – and nominating races in Germany above a possible third trip to France for the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe.

“He won it easily, enjoyed himself, settled, was very relaxed, and coped with the ground – although I think he could do with it better,” said the East Ilsley trainer.

“He proved he’s a very competitive top Group mile-and-a-half horse.

“No one else was making it, so Christophe Soumillon went forward and just thought ‘Well, I’ll stay there’.

“Then he quickened up well, even on that ground.”

Asked about targets for the remainder of this season, Morrison added: “I would probably stick to a mile and a half now.

“We entered in the Arc months ago, and I think we’re still in, but I think we’re more tempted to go off to Germany or somewhere like that for one of their Group Ones in the autumn.

“I’ve always thought a mile and a half should be his trip, and he was just too young to work it out last year.

“He’s always been quite highly strung, but Christophe said he was beautifully-behaved today.”

Breathtaking Look earlier provided another Group Three winner on the card for Britain.

Stuart Williams’ mare justified odds-on favouritism in the Barriere Prix de Meautry, by three and a half lengths from Air De Valse.

The five-year-old was winning her first race in almost 12 months – having last been successful at this same level when springing a minor surprise at Doncaster.

This victory was much easier to predict, and Breathtaking Look got the job done in workmanlike fashion under Pierre-Charles Boudot – challenging the front-running Air De Valse two furlongs out and proving she handled the heavy ground to then move clear.

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