Dream And Do delivers first Group 1 for Frederic Rossi in French 1,000 Guineas

Maxime Guyon had barely turned 20 when winning his first Group 1 but for trainer Frederic Rossi, the long wait is over, after Dream And Do just held off the late charge of Speak Of The Devil in a pulsating running of the French 1,000 Guineas. 

After getting the perfect tow into the race from Marieta, Guyon looked to have made a race-winning move inside the two-furlong pole when angling back towards the stands rail to unleash Dream And Do, who burst into the clear.

But Rossi admitted it was a long final furlong as Cristian Demuro launched the twice-raced Speak Of The Devil after weaving his way through from the back of the pack. 

"I knew that 1,600 metres [a mile] is really the end of her rope and in my opinion she is a real champion over 1,400 metres [seven furlongs]," said Rossi, who is based near Marseille and has been a licence-holder for nearly 30 years.

"She has that ability to accelerate very quickly and it is a delicate balancing act with her over 1,600 metres. We wanted to ride her a bit further back ideally but the draw pretty much forced our hand, otherwise she would have had to give too much ground away. Maxime gave her a top ride and it’s great to win a Group 1."

Guyon was clearly as delighted for Rossi as for himself and broke off from a television interview with a cry of "Allez Freddo!" on his return to unsaddle. 

"I am really happy with that," said Guyon, who was completing his set of French Classics with a first triumph in the Pouliches. "I think I got her beaten in the prep race at Longchamp in asking her to go a bit too soon. This is a 1,600 metres that really plays to speed and she has a really serious turn of foot."

That change of pace and potentially doubtful stamina means Rossi is unlikely to attempt to double up in the Prix de Diane Longines over an extra two and a half furlongs, though bookmakers initially made her the new favourite for the Chantilly Classic on July 5.

"That trip is the end of the world for her and I've always felt we would skip the Diane for that reason," said Rossi. "I'll speak with the owner but I think she would be much better going up against the colts in the Jean Prat [over seven furlongs].

"I don't like to run them at the wrong distance at this level. We’ve won this and we’ll have a think but I don’t think she’ll go to the Diane."

For Andre Fabre there was to be no Classic double as the well-backed favourite Tropbeau travelled well into the race but was unable to go with the winner and had to settle for fourth. 

Fabrice Chappet broke his own Classic duck with Precieuse the last time the Poule d'Essai des Pouliches was staged at Deauville in 2017 and he came perilously close to repeating the trick as Speak Of The Devil lunged late, while his other runner Mageva also ran on well to be third. 

"It's not easy to be beaten a nose," said Chappet. "Speak Of The Devil can be a bit lit up. We held her up and she found herself quite far back. She was eating up the ground at the end and finished really well to be only beaten a whisker." 

"This was the objective for both fillies and we'll take our time to plan what comes next."

For Demuro it was a reversal of fortune after having snatched Classic glory in the final stride here three years ago on Brametot. 

"I thought we were coming there to win," said Demuro. "She took a while to get balanced and only really started to motor in the final metres. I think we spurred on the winner!"

Dream And Do broke one long-running trend in becoming the first filly this century to win the Poule d'Essai after suffering defeat in the key trial, the Prix de la Grotte.