04/04/2011 2:08PM

Class in the Dam Tells in Longchamp Openers


Opening day at Longchamp on Monday was dulled by cloudy skies but still produced a pair of French Guineas candidates in Modern History and Glorious Sight. Temperatures in the upper 50's made sipping wine at the outdoor backyard bars a little uncomfortable, but those wise enough to use bloodlines as a handicapping tool had their hearts warmed by these two as yet untested types.

Modern History took the first race on the card, the $48,300 Prix Machado, a one-mile event for 3-year-old colts and geldings that had never won a listed race, nor won a Class B race this year. Trained by Andre Fabre for Sheihk Mohammed, Modern History was put on the lead by Mickael Barzalona after the first furlong up the hill on the Longchamp backstretch, went clear at the 3/16's pole and had no trouble holding off the late move of Khalid Abdullah's Glaswegian for a handy three-quarter length vcitory. Sent off as the 7.80-1 fourth choice in a field of six, Modern History covered the mile on a holding turf course (somewhere between very soft and heavy) in 1:50.30.

He was able to get away at that price because he had finished just fourth in his only previous start in a one-mile, first-timer maiden at Saint-Cloud on Oct. 31. Clearly improved after a winter's rest, Modern History is a son of the outstanding young stallion Shamardal out of the Private Account mare Fatefully and is a half brother to Favourable Terms, the winner of the 1 1/4-mile, Group 1 Nassau Stakes at Goodwood as well as a pair of Group 2 miles, Leopardstown's Matron Stakes and Royal Ascot's Windsor Forest Stakes.

Chances are good that Modern History and Glaswegian, a Pascal Bary-trained son of Selkirk, will meet again over the Machado course and distance on Easter Sunday, April 24, in the Group 3 Prix de Fontainebleau, the key trial for the Poule d'Essai des Poulains, or French 2000 Guineas.

In the filly division of the Machado, the Prix du Louvre, Glorious Sight outgamed Camelia Rose, a Deauville allowance winner and the 2.30-1 favorite with her group 3-pklaced entrymate Immortal Verse. The winning margin was a nose, the final time of 1:48.10 a bit pacier than that recorded by the boys two hours earlier. Trained by Robert Collet for Robert Strauss and ridden by Sebastien Maillot, Glorious Spirit escaped as the longest shot in the field of seven at 22-1 as she had been third in two previous efforts, both going a mile at Saint-Cloud, one last November and one more recently on March 7.

Glorious Sight is a daughter Singspiel, a 5-time Group/Grade 1winner among them the Dubai World Cup, the Japan Cup and the Canadian International. Her dam is the Warning mare Zelding, and so she is a half sister to Beauty Is Truth, the winner at two against males of the 5 1/2-furlong, Group 3 Prix d'Arenberg, and at three against older males of the 5-furlong, Group 2 Prix du Gros-Chene, both at Chantilly. Next up could be the big French 1000 Guineas prep, the one-mile, Group 3 Prix de la Grotte at Longchamp on the same day as the Fontainebleau.