10/06/2012 1:20PM

Longchamp: Cirrus des Aigles cruises in Prix Dollar

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Cirrus des Aigles won the Group 2 Prix Dollar at Longchamp racecourse in Paris on Saturday as a prep race for a defense of his title in the Group 1 Champion Stakes at Ascot, England, on Oct. 20.

Despite his status as defending champion, Cirrus des Aigles will be far from favored in the Champion Stakes. He will be taking on the undefeated superstar Frankel.

Saturday, Cirrus des Aigles was the dominant runner. Sent off as the 11-10 favorite under jockey Olivier Peslier, Cirrus des Aigles won the race over 1 1/4 miles by six lengths over Hunter’s Light. Cirrus des Aigles took the lead with three furlongs remaining and won without difficulty.

The Prix Dollar was Cirrus des Aigles’s first start since a second in the Group 1 Prix D’Ispahan in May. He was later disqualified from the purse of that race after testing positive for a banned medication. In the last year, Cirrus des Aigles has won three Group 1 races. Aside from the Champion Stakes, he won the $5 million Sheema Classic in Dubai and Prix Ganay at Longchamp in the spring.

Cirrus des Aigles is trained by Corine Barande-Barbe, who described the 6-year-old’s performance Saturday as a “very good workout for Ascot.”

There were three other Group 2 races at Longchamp on Saturday.

◗ In the Prix Chaudenay over 1 7/8 miles for 3-year-olds, Canticum (12-1) won his first stakes, rallying in the final furlong to outfinish 84-1 Les Beaufs by a neck.

◗ In the Prix Daniel Wildenstein, the 7-year-old gelding Zinabaa (6-1) won his second Group 2 race of the year, finishing three-quarters of a length in front of Dux Scholar in the race over a mile. Zinabaa, who was ridden by Gerald Mosse, won the Group 2 Prix du Muguet in May.

◗ Dalkala (3-1) led throughout the Prix de Royallieu for fillies and mares over 1 9/16 miles. Ridden by Christophe Patrice-Lemaire, the 3-year-old Dalkaha held off a late threat from 2-1 favorite Shirocco Star to win by a short neck. Dalkala, bred in Kentucky, is by Giant’s Causeway. She won the Group 3 Prix Cleopatre earlier this year in France.

Jonathan Yarde More than 1 year ago
That was a very impressive performance over an overmatched group of horses. Runner up Hunter's Light is not one of the Godolphin standouts, and has twice finished over 17 lengths behind Sea Moon. Cirrus, however, appears to be Frankel's major opposition in the upcoming Champion Stakes, especially with Nathaniel being forced to miss the Arc due to illness.