Orfevre oozes class in Prix Foy
Orfevre sauntered to back-to-back victories in the Qatar Prix Foy with an impressive display in the Longchamp Group Two.
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The Japenese raider, returned at 4/6 by British bookmakers, was always travelling ominously well under Christophe Soumillon as Now We Can and Stellar Wind set a very slow early gallop.
Soumillon, who had his mount sensibly close to the pace, coasted into the lead over a furlong out and put the race to bed within a matter of strides as the Yasutoshi Ikee-trained five-year-old outclassed the opposition. Very Nice Name was second, three lengths behind the winner, with Pirika third.
Orfevre was second in the Arc last October and heads back to that contest with formidable claims this time. Sky Bet cut his Arc odds from 5/1 to 4/1 with spokesman Michael Shinners commenting: "Having had victory snatched from him in last year's race there would be a sense of justice in Orfevre setting the record straight now and he looked at least as good as and quite possibly better than ever in success here."
Soumillon, who has admitted that he feels he has a point to prove after the defeat in last year's Arc, was left almost speechless after the race.
"After a performance like that, there's not much more I can say," he smiled.
"I knew he was in good form, but that was better than I expected. When he wants [to be], he is unbeatable."
"You can't change what happened last year but we can go back to the Arc with confidence."
There was no more agonising defeat than that of Orfevre 12 months ago, when he appeared to throw the Arc away to Solemia when it was well within his grasp.
However, Yasutoshi Ikee's powerful chestnut was far more impressive than when he had collected this race 12 months ago he and simply toyed with his opposition, albeit in a time nearly five seconds slower than Treve managed in the Prix Vermeille.