The countdown to the Sydney Spring Racing...
One of 20 international invitees to the 2013 Cox Plate this Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival, the Alain De Royer Dupre-trained Giofra will be out to break an historical hoodoo for her kind if she travels down under for Australasia’s weight-for-age championship in October.
Most famous in Australia for his Melbourne Cup triumph with the recently retired Americain three years ago, De Royer Dupre had two of his French-trained WFA runners invited to race in the $3 million Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley on October 26 with Giofra and his Group 1 performing stallion Mandour.
Dansili mare Giofra also has plenty of form in the European elite levels having raced exclusively in Group 1 company at her past seven starts.
Giofra – Horse Form
Trainer: Alain de Royer Dupre (France)
Owner: Haras De La Perelle
Regular Rider: Chistophe Soumillon
Breeding: by Dansili (GB) out of Gracefully (IRE) – by Orpen (USA)
- 1st Group 2 Prix d’Harcourt (2000m) – Longchamp (France) 08/04/2012
- 1st Group 1 Falmouth Stakes (1600m) – Newmarket (England) 13/07/2012
- 2nd Group 1 Hong Kong International Cup (2000m) – Sha Tin (Hong Kong) – 09/12/2012
Spring Target: $3 million Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m), Moonee Valley, 26/10/2013
Following her big three length victory over the boys, including the short priced favourite Vadamar who is a chance for the spring cups in Australia this year, in the Group 2 Prix d’Harcourt (2000m) in April last year at Longchamp she was given her first elite level assignment when second to Cirrus Des Aigles in the Group 1 Prix Ganay (2100m), a brave effort despite being beaten eight lengths on the Heavy track.
She may not have won but the form of the Prix Ganay has proven good with 2011 French Derby champion Reliable Man running third, the now Chris Waller-trained stallion last seen beating home current Cox Plate favourite, the Murray Baker-trained four time Group 1 winning New Zealand youngster It’s A Dundeel in the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) in Sydney.
From there she would go onto win the Group 1 Falmouth Stakes (1600m) at Newmarket in July as an $11 chance with more good runs to follow including her close second to California Memory in the Group 1 Hong Kong Cup (2000m) at Sha Tin last December.
That Hong Kong run was very good from the consistent mare, owned by breeder Juergen H. Winter under the name of his stud farm Haras de la Parelle, as she was held up at the back before storming home strongly over the final 400m to chase the winner all the way to the finishing line.
This year Giofra has had two runs producing a first-up third to Sajjhaa in the Group 1 Dubai Duty Free (1800m) at Meydan in March and her last start fourth to Pastorius in the Group 1 Prix Ganay (2100m) back home in France on April 28.
Her class and recent runs have seen her enter Cox Plate calculations in a genuine way, Giofra paying $21 in the latest Cox Plate odds.
Originally Giofra was entered for the Group 1 Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot this week but she was not among the final declarations for the mile feature and will instead run in Wednesday’s Group 2 Duke Of Cambridge Stakes (1609m) against her own kind.
But her big test will be the Cox Plate where Giofra will be out to become the first northern hemisphere-trained mare to win a Group 1 race in Australia.
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