05/08/2007 11:00PM

Lawman wins French Derby prep


Lawman took no prisoners at Chantilly in France on Wednesday as he drew off to a 2o1/2-length victory in the Group 3, $108,000 Prix de Guiche, establishing himself as a major French Derby contender in the process.

A half-brother to French Oaks winner Latice, Lawman led throughout the 1 1/8 miles at 5-1 to defeat the two-time Group 3-placed Holocene. Trained by Jean-Marie Beguigne and ridden by Olivier Peslier, Lawman covered the distance in 1:52.50 on good to soft ground. A step up to 1 5/16 miles for the Prix du Jockey-Club (French Derby) at Chantilly on June 3 should be right up his alley.

Classic trials continue at Chester Racecourse in England on Friday with the $114,000 Dee Stakes, a Group 3 Epsom Derby prep at about 1 1/4 miles. Striving Storm, coming off a second to the highly regarded Regime in the Group 3 Sandown Classic Trial, is taken to defeat the Aidan O'Brien-trained Admiralofthefleet, last September's Group 2 Royal Lodge Stakes winner who was only fifth last time in the 2000 Guineas Trial at Leopardstown.

O'Brien will also saddle Scorpion, his 2005 Grand Prix de Paris and St. Leger Stakes winner, at Chester. Fifth in the Breeders' Cup Turf and seventh in the Hong Kong Vase in his last two outings, the 5-year-old Scorpion faces recent Navan listed winner Anna Pavlova and five others at 1 5/8 miles in the Group 3, $145,000 Ormonde Stakes.