08/19/2004 11:00PM

Tough test for Divine Proportions


Deauville in France will be the scene of a battle of the sexes for 2-year-olds Sunday when the colt Layman clashes with the filly Divine Proportions in the $307,000 Group 1 Prix Morny.

Layman, a son of Sunday Silence trained by Andre Fabre for Sheikh Mohammed, followed a handy maiden score with a five-length romp in the Group 3 Prix de Cabourg over the Morny course and distance of six furlongs on Aug. 1. Gary Stevens will ride.

Trained by Pascal Bary, Divine Proportions has beaten colts in all three of her starts, most recently in the Group 2 Prix Robert Papin.

The Papin runner-up, Shifting Place, reinvades from Italy but the favorites have more to fear from British Group 3 winners Captain Hurricane and Tournedos, as well as the Aidan O'Brien-trained Group 1-placed Russian Blue.

French Oaks winner Latice returns to action in the 1 1/4-mile Group 3 Prix de la Nonette for 3-year-old fillies, a race in which she will be challenged by French Oaks third-place finisher Grey Lilas, German 1000 Guineas champ Shapira, and Green Noon, who is making her first start since finishing second in last October's Group 1 Prix Marcel Boussac.