Horses To Follow » French Navy

French Navy

French Navy put up a good performance to finish second behind Poet in a listed 10-furlong contest at Newbury on Saturday. The second Godolphin string after Retrieve, he travelled well through the race, he travelled like by far the most likely winner at the three-furlong pole as everything else came under pressure, but  Ahmed Ajtebi kicked him on from there. The ground was really soft at Newbury on Saturday, they were struggling home over all distances, and French Navy’s early move played into the hands of the stamina-laden Poet. Clive Cox’s horse was able to get out after French Navy again, and he succeeded in wearing him down close home. It is probable that, had French Navy’s move been timed a little better, had it been delayed a little longer, he would have won.

This was still a most encouraging performance from the Godolphin horse, much more encouraging than his debut this term was, when he finished well behind Gatewood in the Wolferton Handicap at Royal Ascot. He does have form on soft ground but, by Shamardal, he should be even better on better ground, and he should be able to see out this 10-furlong trip a lot more strongly when the ground isn’t as taxing. He will be of interest wherever he goes next, he can progress again from this, he was highly-regarded when with Andre Fabre as a two-year-old and he may still be under-rated in Britain. A Group 3 winner at Goodwood last September on his only visit to the West Sussex track, he would be of particular interest if Glorious Goodwood featured in his plans.

14th July 2012