09/05/2009 11:00PM

Aqlaam, finally healthy, wins Prix du Moulin


Aqlaam thrust himself into the Breeders' Cup Mile picture on Sunday with a solid victory in the Group 1, $570,000 Prix du Moulin de Longchamp. The 4-year-old son of Oasis Dream has overcome a series of injuries since his juvenile season and now rates as one of Europe's leading milers.

Sent off at 2.30-1, he tracked the pace of Dubai Duty Free winner Gladiatorus before taking command under Richard Hills a little over a furlong from home, defeating Famous Name by 1 1/2 lengths with Virtual third, 2 1/2 lengths farther back. French 1000 Guineas winner Elusive Wave reared at the start and took no part in the running. The winning time for the mile on good to soft ground was 1:38.87.

Trained in Newmarket by William Haggas for Hamdan al-Maktoum, Aqlaam had suffered a hairline fracture in his 2-year-old debut and didn't race again until the following spring. After winning the seven-furlong, Group 3 Jersey Stakes at Royal Ascot at 3, he suffered a pelvic injury and was put away for the remainder of the year.

Just two lengths third behind Paco Boy in the Group 1 Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot in June, Aqlaam next won Ascot's Group 2 Summer Mile Stakes. His victory on Sunday was an improvement over his last start, when he finished a six-length runner-up in Deauville's Prix Jacques le Marois to Goldikova, who last year won the Moulin prior to her victory in the Breeders' Cup Mile.

Earlier, Proviso overcame a rough start to land the Group 3, $114,000 Prix du Pin. Squeezed back at the start of the seven-furlong contest, the 2.30-1 Andre Fabre-trained Dansili filly rallied for a neck victory over Varenar with her Juddmonte entrymate Emergency a short head away in third. Having clocked 1:22.13, Proviso will go next in the Prix de la Foret on Oct. 3, when she is likely to run into defending titleholder Paco Boy as well as Goldikova, who beat her 4 1/2 lengths into third last time in the Prix Rothschild.

In the seven-furlong, Group 3 Prix La Rochette for 2-year-olds, Godolphin's Buzzword led virtually throughout to defeat the Aga Khan's Siyouni by 1 1/2 lengths. Ridden by Ahmed Ajtebi, Buzzword was part of a four-pronged Godolphin entry that was sent off as the even money favorite. Buzzword was timed in 1:22.83.

Buzzword had finished three lengths second to the highly regarded Dick Turpin in the six-furlong, Group 2 Richmond Stakes at Goodwood on Aug. 31.

The first two finishers Sunday are both sons of Pivotal out of mares by Danehill and are expected to meet again in the Group 1 Prix Jean Luc-Lagardere over the same course and distance on Oct. 4.