Fabre wary of Palace Pier as Victor Ludorum goes for Marois gold

Andre Fabre believes Palace Pier “sets the standard” in the Prix Jacques le Marois at Deauville on Sunday.

Fabre, who has won the Marois a joint-record seven times, is set to run Victor Ludorum, who returned to winning ways in Group Three company last time out.

John and Thady Gosden’s Palace Pier won the race last year, and while he missed the Sussex Stakes due to a blood disorder he has already won the Lockinge and Queen Anne Stakes this season.

Poetic Flare, who is also due to run, is the leading three-year-old miler, but Jim Bolger’s charge was beaten in the Sussex by Alcohol Free last time out, his third defeat of a busy season in which he has won the 2000 Guineas and St James’s Palace Stakes.

“He’s going to run, he won nicely last time and if the ground dries up that will help him,” said Fabre of Victor Ludorum.

“It will have helped his confidence winning last time out. I’m quite confident he’s going to run well.

“I haven’t been that impressed by the three-year-old generation this season, to be honest – so I think Palace Pier remains the one to beat.

“I know Jim Bolger really likes his horse, but he’s a bit up and down. On his good days he is very good, he was very impressive at Royal Ascot but he has obviously been beaten a few times, too.

“Because of that I think Palace Pier sets the standard to aim at.”

Bolger could also run his Irish Guineas winner Mac Swiney.

Jessica Harrington’s Alpine Star was second last year and is set for another crack, Richard Hannon is represented by Chindit and Aidan O’Brien has left in Mother Earth and Order Of Australia.

Marianafoot, winner of the Prix Maurice de Gheest at the weekend, has been taken out by Jerome Reynier.

The Revenant takes Prix du Muguet test

Impressive Queen Elizabeth II Stakes winner The Revenant is back out on Saturday in the Prix du Muguet at Saint-Cloud.

Francis-Henri Graffard’s stable star is running there in preference to the Lockinge at Newbury in a fortnight, with the trainer being put off by the current quick ground in Berkshire and the difficulties of overseas travel due to the pandemic.

He stated earlier this week, however, that The Revenant could still come to Royal Ascot, ground permitting.

The mud-lover concedes 4lb or more to eight rivals, including Jean-Claude Rouget’s Wally, winner of seven of his 11 races.

Andre Fabre fields four in Duhail, Alson, Tropbeau and last year’s French 2000 Guineas winner Victor Ludorum.

However, Fabre fears his Classic victor may need the run. He finished behind Mishriff twice after his Guineas win, but was well behind behind Persian King in the Prix du Moulin on his final start last September.

“He has had a longer winter break than some of mine,” said Fabre.

“He had been suffering with a back problem, we found out. So, he might be a bit short of work for a race like this.

“I’m not quite sure he’s good enough for the best Group Ones, going forward, and I’m not sure that he stays a mile and a quarter.

“I think he will run well and this will just put him right for the Prix d’Ispahan, which will be his next race.”