France's star filly Divine Proportions faces the stiffest test of her unbeaten career at Deauville on Sunday when she competes in the Prix Haras de Fresnay-le-Buffard Jacques le Marois (Fr-I), a race sponsored by her owners -- the Niarchos family.
Winner of all of her nine starts – five of them in group 1 company and all except the first in stakes races – Divine Proportions has so far earned $1,577,507 in her career.
To add to that haul, she will have to overcome the challenge of a high-class field that features Irish Two Thousand Guineas (Ire-I) winner Dubawi, the dual Group 1 winner Valixir, and Divine Proportions' three-parts brother Whipper, who will be bidding for his second group I success at Deauville in the space of eight days following victory in the Prix Maurice de Gheest.
Following some work at Deauville earlier this week, Divine Proportions was described as being in "impeccable condition" by her trainer Pascal Bary and despite the strong field, the daughter of Kingmambo
is rated an odds on shot by bookmakers.
As if she needed it, Divine Proportions' juvenile form was given a significant boost yesterday (Thursday) when Layman, who finished second to her in the Prix Morny (Fr-I), made a winning debut for Godolphin in a group III race at Salisbury.
But Dubawi has also been reported to be working well and connections believe the straight Deauville mile will suit their colt, a son of Dubai Millennium. "He has been working really well and I'm happy with him. He is ready to run on Sunday and is in good form and in good shape," trainer Saeed bin Suroor was quoted on the Godolphin Web site. Kerrin McEvoy takes over the ride from the injured Frankie Dettori.
Another star filly, multiple group I winner Attraction, is due to return to action following an abortive trip to Hong Kong earlier in the season in the Stan James online Hungerford Stakes (Eng-III) at Newbury Saturday.
Struggling to cope with the heat and breaking slowly out of the gate, Attraction was 11th of 13 behind Bullish Luck and stablemate Silent Witness in the Champions Mile (HK-I) at Sha Tin on May 14. Trainer Mark Johnston has been patient in bringing her back to the races.
He said: "She had a fetlock injury which she took a while to get over and that has disrupted the season. We didn't feel she was quite ready for the Falmouth Stakes (at Newmarket in July, won by Soviet Song) and then for her intended target in France the ground was very soft. But she is in very good shape now."