Horses To Follow » Avenir Certain

Avenir Certain

Avenir Certain put up a good performance to get as close as she did in the Prix Jean Romanet at Deauville on Sunday, ridden, as she was, from off the pace in a race in which the early pace was relatively sedate.

Settled at the rear of the field by Gregory Benoist through the early stages of the race as Adrie de Vries set easy early fractions on Odeliz, Jean-Claude Romanet’s filly travelled well on the run around the home turn. She was still last of a tightly-paced 11-horse field as they straightened up for home, but she travelled best of all. Moved to the near side at the top of the short home straight, she picked up nicely for Benoist initially, and came with a run that looked like taking her to the front. However, she was trying to make ground into a quickening pace, and she was racing on her own, without any cover, on the near side from about two furlongs out. Odeliz and Bawina picked up from the front on the far side, as Avenir Certain finished best of all and moved to her right over towards the duelling leaders. In the circumstances, the challengers run flattened out a little, but she still ran all the way to the line to get to within a length of the winner and within three parts of a length of the runner-up.

It was a fine performance from the Le Havre filly. She did best by far of the fillies who raced in rear through the early stages of the race. Odeliz made just about all the running and sprang a 35/1 shock, while runner-up Bawina was third into the home straight, and the first three finished nicely clear. It was a race in which it was difficult to make ground from the rear, so Avenir Certain can be marked up a fair bit on the bare form of this run.

Avenir Certain hasn’t won yet this season, but this was just her latest fine run in defeat, and there is a prize like this in her when she has her conditions. Last year’s French 1000 Guineas and French Oaks winner, she seems to be equally adept over a 10 furlongs and a mile, but she does need to be held up, she is a strong traveller, so she really does need a fast pace to be seen at her best. She didn’t get a fast pace when she finished a close-up third in the Falmouth Stakes at Newmarket, she didn’t get it when she went down by a half a length to Fintry in the Group 3 Prix Bertrand du Breuil at Chantilly in June, and she didn’t get it either on Sunday.

She holds an entry in the Sun Chariot Stakes at Newmarket on 3rd October, and that looks like a good target for her now. They usually go a good pace in the Sun Chariot, up Newmarket’s Rowley Mile, and that should suit Avenir Certain well. A fast pace over a mile on easy ground represent close to optimum conditions for her, and she could get all of that in the Sun Chariot, but she will always be of interest over a mile or 10 furlongs when it looks like she will get a strong pace.

23rd August 2015