Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud

Grand Prix de Saint CloudThe Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud is one of the top Group 1 races in France. It is run over a distance of a mile and a half and is open for four-year-olds and upwards. It is staged in June each year and attracts some of the best middle-distance horses in Europe.

Origins

The race was originally held in 1904 under the name of the Prix du President de la Republique. It was held at Maisons-Laffitte racecourse and three year olds were allowed to take part. It was abandoned during the war years but resumed in 1919 at Saint-Cloud. It was first run as the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud at Longchamp in 1941, returning to Maisons-Laffitte and Le Tremblay before finding a permanent home at Saint-Cloud in 1946.

The race was classed at Group 1 level in 1971 and closed to three-year-olds in 2005. It became part of the Breeders’ Cup Challenge series in 2011 with the winner being granted an automatic invitation to the Breeders’ Cup Turf.

Betting on Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud

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Past winners

Five horses have won the race on two occasions. Nino was the first to achieve it in 1926 and 1927. He was emulated by Tanerko (1957, 1958), Rheingold (1972, 1973), Helissio (1996, 1997) and Ange Gabriel (2002, 2003).

Yves Saint-Martin has been the most successful jockey in the race’s history with seven winners including Relko in 1964 and Dahlia in 1974. Trainer Francois Mathet has been successful on eight occasions including Tanerko’s two victories and a dead-heat with Shakapour in 1980. Marcel Boussac won the race five times as an owner.

Rheingold was trained by Barry Hills in Lambourn and was famously beaten a short-head by Roberto in the Epsom Derby in 1972, a defeat that many felt was entirely down to the brilliance of Lester Piggott on the winner. Rheingold confirmed his status as one of the top three-year-olds with victory in the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud before finishing fourth behind Roberto and Brigadier Gerard at York. After chasing home the brilliant French filly Dahlia in the King George, Rheingold then secured his second victory in the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud before crowning his career by winning the Arc, this time with Piggott in the saddle.

Trainer Ian Balding won the race in consecutive years with Glint Of Gold (1982) and Diamond Shoal (1983) before Geoff Wragg’s Teenoso provided Piggott with his last winner in the race in 1984. Another popular winner was Clive Brittain’s User Friendly (1993) who had won the Epsom, Irish and Yorkshire Oaks in 1992 before winning her third classic in the St Leger at Doncaster.

The French colt Helissio won the Arc in 1996 by five lengths but failed the following year behind Peintre Celebre. Carnegie (1995) and Montjeu (2000) were other Arc winners to have won the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud whilst Sir Michael Stoute has enjoyed success in the race with Gamut (2004), Mountain High (2007) and Spanish Moon (2009).

Mick Channon’s Youmzain finished runner-up in the Arc for three consecutive seasons from 2007-2009 but got his head in front at Saint-Cloud under a masterful ride from Richard Hughes in 2008. Andre Fabre’s success with Meandre in 2012 leaves him just one behind Mathet’s record of eight wins in the race.

Betting on the Grand Prix de Saint Cloud

Because of the race’s status as one of the top middle-distance events in Europe, there is international interest in the event. Prices will be available with the leading UK bookmakers in the week leading up to the race as well as the Pari-mutuel prices on the day itself.

We strongly recommend PaddyPower (see link above) or Bet365 for online betting on the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud.

Prix de Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud 2014

The German-trained Novellist won the race in 2013, beating former Melbourne Cup winner Dunaden by a length and a quarter. Cirrus des Aigles, the highest rated middle-distance horse in Europe at the time, could manage only fifth.

Novellist went on to confirm the form in the King George at Ascot and put himself at the head of the market for the Prix de L’Arc de Triomphe at the end of the season. It is traditionally an early season target for the top mile and a half horses in France so could feature one of Andre Fabre’s exciting colts Flintshire, Intello or Ocovango.

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