It has been an amazing first week of action at Cagnes-Sur-Met as the first signs on the Flat season begin to arrive in 2022. Saturdays action was highly competitive and the first Class 1 contest of the new season went the way of Bonheur Bleu for Jerome Reyner and Christophe Soumillon. This Mondays 8 race card focuses on the older horses and it is to the same connections as Bonheur Bleu that we look for the next horse to watch.
5-year-old Colt - trained by Jerome Reynier
Gris de Gris x Marianabaa (Anabaa)
5-year-old entires are a rare commodity in modern racing, but one thing that Jerome Reynier can never be accused of is lacking patience. He brings his horses along at a pace to suit them and doesn’t rush them into juvenile or classic contests unless he thinks they are truly ready. So it is perhaps not too much of a surprise to see his 5-year-old son of Gris de Gris still has his stallion gear in full working order. He comes from the most successful family lines that the Seroul team have ever produced, being a half-brother to Prix Maurice de Gheest hero Marianafoot. His illustrious half-brother took his time to make his mark at the highest level, allowing even for injury, he was well into his 5th season in training before he won his first group race, so there is every reason to believe that 2022 could be the year for PADRON.
This Mondays contest is nowhere near pattern level, but it is a very deep race for a Class 3 contest so this should give us a very good guide as to where Padron sits in relation to his rating. He is the highest rated horse in this field, with an official mark of 44-kilos, mainly earned through a Listed win at Saint-Cloud in March last year. He followed that win with a 3rd placed finish in Group 3 at Dusseldorf in April and spent the remainder of the campaign running in pattern company across Europe. This will represent a significant drop in class for Padron despite the quality of the field and it will be disappointing if he isn’t involved in the finish on these terms. He was last seen finishing 8th in a Listed contest at Toulouse in November, but is best forgiven that run as he was stepped up to 12-furlongs, which looked an odd move based on his pedigree and so it proved. Having travelled nicely in a prominent position, he didn’t find anything for pressure and blatantly failed to stay the distance in the soft conditions. Given a break of 56-days he should be much fresher and back down to a trip thats more suitable we should get a much better showing from him