Hoggar De l’Ardus dominates Qatar Derby
The Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club (QREC)-sponsored Gr1 P/A Qatar Derby des Pur-Sang Arabes de 4 Ans was run at Chantilly on June 20 and landed by Hoggar De l’Ardus (Mister Ginoux x Alfa De l’Ardus by Kash De l’Ardus) in the colours of Her Excellency Sheikha Reem Bint Mohammed Bin Khalifa Al Thani.
H E Sheikh Ali bin Jassim Al Thani, Ambassador of Qatar to France, and Edouard de Rotshchild, President of France Galop, were present at Chantilly and presented the trophies to the winners.
Hoggar De l’Ardus scored the 2000m contest impressively, announcing himself the crowned leader of four-year-old Purebred Arabians.
He easily pulled clear of the field 300m from the winning post and despite swerving across the track 100m later, he got the better of the favourite Abbes (TM Fred Texas x Raqiyah by Amer) by three lengths at the line. Abbes was always well-positioned against the rail, but flattened out when challenged and headed by eventual winner Hoggar De l’Ardus, who went clear.
The His Highness Sheikh Abdullah Bin Khalifa Al Thani-owned Abbes held on well in the closing stages and finished runner-up under Olivier Peslier, securing a one-two for Fourcy. The Olivier Trigodet (S)-trained and Anthony Crastus-ridden Soko (Nieshan x Saka by Tornado De Syrah) was further three and a half lengths behind in third.
“We couldn’t have dreamt of better,” said Thomas Fourcy, trainer of both Hoggar De l’Ardus and Abbes after the race. “I’ve always thought a lot of Abbes, who we’ve had since he was a three-year-old. Hoggar De l’Ardus, I got him this year and he has gone from strength to strength at home. The two were in perfect condition and they are both very, very good horses. Hoggar has a bit of character, but a lot of ability.”
“Today was my first time sitting on Hoggar De l’Ardus,” commented Maxime Guyon. “But I had watched his races and I knew that he had a huge capacity to accelerate. That’s why I waited before asking him for an effort. He ducked sharply once he found himself in front; about 250m from the post, but that proved that he still had plenty in reserve and a lot of progression to be made.”
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