Americain (USA) will start in Sunday night’s Prix Kergorlay
17 Aug 2012 | Americain (USA) will take the biggest step yet towards a start in a third Emirates Melbourne Cup when he resumes in France on Sunday night, Melbourne time.
The striking son of Dynaformer will contest the Group 2 Prix Kergorlay at Deauville, a race he won prior to winning the 150th Melbourne Cup in 2010.
The Kergorlay will be Americain's first start since returning to French maestro Alain du Roper Dupre, who has overseen his two Melbourne Cup campaigns, and co-owner Colleen Bamford said it was pleasing that he had come up for the 3000-metre event.
“We were hoping he'd be ready for the Kergorlay and Alain did too, but in the beginning we weren't sure whether we'd get there,” Bamford said.
“When we sent him back over (to France), the decision was made last-minute and it was a bit later than when we would have liked him to have gone back, but since he'd been back everything's gone well and the horse is really well.”
Americain is back with de Royer Dupre after a luckless three-run autumn campaign with Australian Hall of Fame trainer David Hayes.
Bamford and husband Kevin, who race Americain with Gerry and Val Ryan, are excited about being a part of the Kergorlay, which has become a definitive lead-up for Europe's spring hopefuls.
Americain won it two years ago, while Jukebox Jury – who is also raced by the Bamfords and the Ryans – won last year. Jukebox Jury finished down the track in the Melbourne Cup, but the Kergorlay beaten brigade occupied four of the first five positions in the $6m Melbourne Cup.
Dunaden and Red Cadeaux, who fought out the closest finish in Melbourne Cup history, finished ninth and fifth respectively at Deauville, while Americain and Manighar – fourth and fifth in the Melbourne Cup – ran 10th and fourth in the Kergorlay.
Americain is one of numerous spring nominations in line to contest this year's Kergorlay.
De Royer Dupre-trained stablemate Shahwardi is also nominated along with the Mikel Delzangles-trained Vadamar, a stablemate to Dunaden, the Luca Cumani-trained Mount Athos, last year's third placegetter Briagantin (Andre Fabre), Aizazoski (Elie Lellouche) and Simenon (William Mullins).
The Americain camp won't know precisely who they are up against until the final field is declared overnight but they are happy with the condition of their charge, who may not have another run before returning to Melbourne.
“The horse is very relaxed and doing really well we're very happy with him,” Bamford said. “He had a hit out yesterday and Alain was really happy with him.”