Five Line Up in Sunday’s Darley Prix Morny at Deauville

August 20, 2022

Challenge Series: Win and You’re In for the US$1 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint

DEAUVILLE, FRANCE― Steve Bradley’s Royal Ascot winner The Ridler (GB) will take on four rivals in the Darley Prix Morny (G1) for 2-year-olds over the straight course at Deauville on Sunday. The winner of the 6-furlong contest is guaranteed an automatic starting position into the US$1 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint (G1) through the Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series: Win and You’re In.

The Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series is an international series of 82 stakes races whose winners receive automatic starting positions and fees paid into a corresponding race of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships, which will be held at Keeneland Race Course in Lexington, Kentucky, on Nov. 4-5.

TVG will televise the Darley Prix Morny live, with post time scheduled for 8:33 a.m. ET.

The Ridler, a 2-year-old son of Brazen Beau (AUS), earned an automatic berth into the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint when he scored a shocking 50-1 win in the Norfolk Stakes (G2) at Royal Ascot on June 16. He represents Yorkshire-based trainer Richard Fahey, who won the Prix Morny race 12 months ago with Perfect Power (GB).

“He came out of the Norfolk great but when you’re a Group Two winner there aren’t a lot of places you can go,” said Fahey. “He’s working very well and we’re very happy with him. It’s the first Group One 2-year-old race of the year, we can race without a penalty, and we’re looking forward to it.”

Amo Racing Limited’s Persian Force (IRE) won the Close Brothers July Stakes (G2) at Newmarket on July 7, but finished a distant second behind the impressive Little Big Bear (IRE) in the Keeneland Phoenix Stakes (G1) at The Curragh on Aug. 6. 

Trainer Richard Hannon is hopeful his colt can return to winning ways here.

“He ran a good race in Ireland,” said Hannon. “I didn’t think there was a 2-year-old that could beat him seven lengths, but there we are. He came back in good shape.” 

It was in 2001 with Johannesburg when Ireland’s champion trainer Aidan O’Brien last won the Darley Prix Morny, before going on to win that year’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Belmont Park. On Sunday, heruns the first two finishers from the Darley Prix Robert Papin (G2) on July 17 at Chantilly in Blackbeard (IRE) and The Antarctic (IRE).

The only filly in the race is the Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners’ Manhattan Jungle (IRE). The daughter of Bungle Inthejungle (GB), trained in Newmarket by Amy Murphy, has won three of five starts. She finished a length behind The Antarctic over the same course and distance in last week’s Darley Prix de Cabourg (G3).

Notable fillies to have won the race in recent years include the Wesley Ward-trained Lady Aurelia in 2016 and Campanelle (IRE) in 2020.

As part of the benefits of the Challenge Series, Breeders’ Cup will pay the entry fees for the Darley Prix Morny winner to start in the US$1 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint, which will be run at 5 ½ furlongs at Keeneland. Breeders’ Cup will also provide a travel allowance for all starters based outside of North America to compete in the World Championships. The Challenge winner must be nominated to the Breeders’ Cup program by the Championships’ pre-entry deadline of Oct. 24 to receive the rewards.

Breeders’ Cup Press Release

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