The French filly Senga won the Prix de Diane Longines (Group 1) on Sunday at Chantilly, which is the fourth leg of the EpiqE Series, which is in its second year. She was ridden by Stéphane Pasquier, who was winning his first ‘Diane’, carrying the colours of Flaxman Stables Ireland (Niarchos Family), and is trained in Chantilly by Pascal Bary.
Pascal Bary was taking a punt with this highly esteemed filly, as she had never run further than 1,600 metres. Disappointing in the Abu Dhabi Poule d’Essai des Pouliches, in which she was one of the favourites after having won her prep race, Senga ran two weeks ago in the Prix de Sandringham (Group 2). Over 1,600 metres, she finished strongly for third suggesting that she would appreciate further.
Pascal Bary won this race in 2005 with the champion Divine Proportions, who carried the same colours.
A photograph was need to separate the second and third. Sistercharlie took second place. Unlucky in running, the filly trained in Beaupreau by Henri-Alex Pantall finished very fast. Terrakova, daughter of the champion Goldikova, finished in the same position as her dam had nine years ago, in third.
The race was marked by the fall of Onthemoonagain in the straight. She clipped heels with the filly in front of her, and she lost her balance.
REACTIONS FROM CONNECTIONS:
Pascal Bary, trainer of Senga (1st):
“She is a fantastic filly, from a fantastic breeding operation. We definitely ran her over too short before! Her connections trusted me to let her run in this race, despite having run only two weeks ago. She has a good run, in a race with consistent pace, and showed a superb turn of foot.”
Stéphane Pasquier, jockey of Senga (1st):
“I followed Lanfranco Dettori, as he knows where he’s going! (laughs). She responded perfectly when I asked. It’s wonderful!”
Alan Cooper, manager for the Niarchos family, owners and breeders of Senga (1st):
“Stéphane Pasquier and Pascal Bary both said that the filly had shown them in the Prix de Sandringham and in the morning that she needed further than a mile… It was a bit of a risk to run at a two week interval, but they were right! It’s great for all the team.”
Henri-Alex Pantall, trainer of Sistercharlie (2nd)
“Sistercharlie didn’t have a clear run, neither in the turn nor the straight, where she had to wind he way through. It’s a shame when you see the way she finished. But that’s racing.”
Freddy Head, trainer of Terrakova (3rd)
“Terrakova ran very well. She put up a great performance as she had been caught flat footed when the rest of the field kicked.
“She got a few bumps, so she couldn’t follow them when they jumped and so couldn’t get near the pace. Despite that, she ran well. It’s only her third start, and it’s promising. She should step up in trip, to 2400m.”
John Gosden, trainer of Shutter Speed (4th)
“She delivered a superb performance, and there are no excuses. She jumped from a wide draw as well as she could. I thought that Frankie Dettori rode her very well. At one point she looked like she was coming to win. 2.000m is the perfect distance for her. Here, she had 100 meters too far, and anyway the winner was simply a better horse.”