RSS Feed for this Blog

Friday, September 30, 2011

Greetings From Paris.

It's around 11:30 PM Friday night in Paris, and I feel like it's the end of one long nearly continuous day that started Thursday when I got up for work. Our flight left NY at around 11:30PM on Thursday, and 2 Tylenol PM's bought me maybe an hour of doze time. I just can't sleep on planes. I hate it when I get up and see most others passed out cold ...including the Head Chef. Have to say also that Air France doesn't have the most leg room, which didn't help. But the French know how to fly anyway; dinner was served shortly after takeoff, including wine and champagne at no extra charge. And a modest breakfast greeted those who were wiping sleep from their eyes.

Rallied though and got in a nice afternoon on a brilliantly sunny day with highly unseasonable temperatures around 80...a trend forecast to continue through Arc day st least. After a scrumptious lunch (big surprise there), we went to the Jardin des Places botanical garden with a stop at the Museum of Natural History (D'Histoire Naturelle), and capped off the afternoon with a stroll along the Seine. Ho hum, just another day in Parisdise! Some photos follow below.

Can't seem to get any past performances for the program at Longchamps on Sunday, which includes six Group 1's in addition to the Arc. (And great to see that the three-time BC Mile winner Goldikova is slated to go in the Qatar Prix de la Foret, her final start in France before she's retired at the end of this season. Her three-year old half-sister Galikova is entered in the Arc.) The English-language Racing Post will be available outside the track on race day though. Don't know if it matters that much given the relative paucity of information in the Euro pp's anyway, so I'm reading the coverage on the Racing Post site, as well as in the other UK papers.

Now, the sunny and dry weather has already scared John Gosden's Nathaniel away, and there was concern about the defending Arc champion Workforce not liking a firmer than usual track too. But those fears have apparently subsided after his connections walked the course on Friday. The filly Sarafina, the pre-race favorite, drew poorly in post 13, and her odds have eased to 4-1. The Aga Khan-bred daughter of Refuse to Bend has come on in her four-year old season with three straight wins, including one over this course and distance in the Prix Foy.

So You Think also drew poorly, in post 14. We're told that only two winners in the past eight races have won from beyond post eight, but that doesn't really seem like a big enough sample to hang your hat on. So You Think has won four of five this year, and turned back the highly regarded filly Snow Fairy (who starts from post 11) in the Irish Champions...a race in which the latter had every chance to go by, and just couldn't. And it didn't look to me like she would have even stretching out to the mile and a half Arc.

Well, the lack of sleep is catching up to me, so that's it for now. For more on the Arc, check out the Racing Post link above, Marcus Hersh's article in the Form here...or just do what I'm doing - search 'Arc Longchamps' in Google news section to access all the press from the UK.

Grande Galerie De L'Evolution (@ Museum National D'Histoire Naturelle)

Jardin des Plante

1 Comment:

Figless said...

NYRA apparently showed Longchamps on Channel 71 but did not bother opening up their internet site and video. So they got no action from me.