09/29/2006 11:00PM

Caradak takes Foret by short neck


PARIS - Without a runner in Sunday's Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe, Godolphin made amends to a certain degree by winning both the Group 1 Prix de la Foret with Caradak and the Group 2 Prix Daniel Wildenstein with Echo of Light on Saturday as Longchamp kicked off its big Arc weekend.

A 5-year-old son of Desert Style, Caradak emerged form his short-neck score in the seven-furlong $320,000 Foret as a Breeders' Cup Mile possible, although Librettist remains the first Godolphin choice for the race.

Perfectly placed for a clear run in fourth by jockey Frankie Dettori, Caradak dueled through the final furlong to prevail by a short neck from Linngari, with Welsh Emperor and the favored Stormy River finishing in a dead heat for third. The 4-1 second choice, Caradak covered the distance on good ground in 1:20.90, a decent time considering the largely downhill nature of Longchamp's seven-furlong course.

"Frankie gave him a terrific ride from a tricky wide draw," said Godolphin's racing manager, Simon Crisford. "The plan all along has been to send Caradak to the Hong Kong Mile on Dec. 10, but we will certainly take a look at the Breeders' Cup Mile."

Echo of Light, one of the last sons of the late Dubai Millennium still in training, must have warmed owner Sheikh Mohammed's heart with his impressive two-length victory in the $165,000 one-mile Daniel Wildenstein. Ridden by Dettori, he tracked the pace set by Japanese raider Picaresque Coat, then led at the eighth pole, clocking 1:37 as the 4-5 choice.

"He's taken a long time to come into himself," said Crisford of Echo of Light, who was coming off a pair of Group 3 wins at York. "He's still babyish, and we have no immediate plans for him now. Frankie thinks he'll be even better on a left-handed course.

"Echo of Light was always Sheikh Mohammed's favorite Dubai Millennium," Crisford continued. "When he saw him at the yearling sales, he came over to me and said, 'If you want to see what a real racehorse looks like, here it is.' Let the world be warned, Echo of Light stays in training next year."

The Wildenstein runner-up, Picaresque Coat, gave Deep Impact's Arc chances a boost. Since arriving in France he had been serving as Deep Impact's workmate. After setting a quickish pace he held on for second, an excellent effort considering that he runs in allowance races in Japan.

In a largely German affair, Soldier Hollow, a British-bred trained in Germany by Peter Schiergen, held off Manduro, a German-bred trained in France by Andre Fabre, to take the Group 2, $165,000 Prix Dollar by a neck. Fresh from a third-place finish in the Arlington Million, Soldier Hollow, ridden to perfection by Olivier Peslier, will now try for a third victory in the 1 1/4-mile Group 1 Premio Roma. Soldier Hollow, a 6-year-old son of In the Wings sent off at 3-1, covered the 1 1/8 miles, 165 yards in 1:59.40.

* Trainer George Strawbridge must have been becoming frustrated with his 4-year-old Montjeu filly, Montare, as she had finished second in group race company four times in succession this year. On Saturday she finally came through with a game head victory over Lahudood in the Group 2, $165,000 Prix de Royallieu. The 2-1 choice under Peslier, Montare got the 1 9/16 miles in 2:39.50.

* In the Group 2, $165,000 Prix Chaudenay, Ecurie Wildenstein's 7-1 Vendangeur gave his hot young sire, Galileo, another stakes score, prevailing by a short head over Ponte Tresa in the 1 7/8-mile event as the odds-on favorite, Getaway, came home a one-paced third, a half-length farther back.