Unbeaten Dalakhani Dominates French Derby
Updated: Monday, June 2, 2003 1:41 PM
Posted: Sunday, June 1, 2003 2:21 PM
Photo: Trevor Jones
Dalakhani, winning the Prix Lupin last month, returned to win the French Derby.
Aga Kahn's undefeated Dalakhani provided a dominating performance in Sunday's Prix du Jockey-Club (Fr-I) at Chantilly, turning back the late challenge of Super Celebre for a two-length victory.
Ridden by Christophe Soumillon, the Alain de Royer Dupre-trained colt reached the front two furlongs from home and was in full command to the wire. Having now added the French Derby to his list of accomplishments, the son of Darshaan has won all six of his races, five of them against group competition.
The final time for the 1 1/2-mile event, which attracted seven competitors, was 2:26.7 on a course rated good.
"He's an exceptional horse. He's very calm, a good mover and he's unbeaten. He's very easy for a trainer," the winning trainer told the BBC afterward.
Asked if the Irish bred, a half-brother to the great Daylami, was being considered for the Irish Derby, Royer Dupre responded, "It's possible, but we need time to make a decision."
Dalakhani is now favored for the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe (Fr-I) at 3-1.
Diyapour, racing coupled with the winner, broke on the lead and established an eight-length advantage after three furlongs, but was soon collared by Papineau and jockey Frankie Dettori, who took the lead into the straight before being overtaken by Dalakhani.
Super Celebre, ridden by Dominique Boeuf, tracked Dalakhani throughout. He quickened as the Dalakhani reached the front, but Soumillon askd for more and the colt squirted away again to coast home comfortably. Coroner ran on for third place as Papineau faded to fifth. Gary Tanaka's Touch of Land was fourth.
Soumillon won the listed Prix La Moskowa with Barathe Blazer earlier on the French Derby card.
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