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Oiseau De Feu

Oiseau De Feu was the one to take out of the Group 3 Prix de Fontainbleau at Longchamp on Sunday for me. Settled last of the eight runners from his outside draw by Christophe Lemaire, he was still stone last after they had straightened up with less than two furlongs to run, but he picked up impressively under no more than a hands and heels ride to close the leaders down all the way to the line. In the end he finished third, just two lengths behind the winner Silver Frost, a dual Group 3 winner last season and the winner of a listed race on his only previous start this season, and just a length and a half behind last year’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf runner-up, Westphalia.

A dual winner last season as a two-year-old, once on heavy ground and once on the all-weather at Deauville, and already a winner this term over a mile back on the artificial surface at the Normandy track, Oiseau De Feu handled Lonchamp and good to soft turf well, and he seems to be ideally suited by a fast-run mile, as he had here. He can do better.

12th April 2009