Manduro joins big league

Andre Fabre's Manduro proved the class act on show at Longchamp as he gained his first success at the highest level when putting four rivals to the sword in the Prix d'Ispahan.

Andre Fabre's Manduro proved the class act on show at Longchamp as he gained his first success at the highest level when putting four rivals to the sword in the Prix d'Ispahan.

The Monsun entire reappeared with an impressive victory in the Earl of Sefton Stakes at Newmarket and had little difficulty in maintaining his 100% for 2007 here.

Placed five times last summer in Group One company, Manduro assumed command at the quarter-mile pole and stretched away impressively when asked to put the race to bed.

Stephane Pasquier always looked in control aboard the 8-13 favourite, who held off the Olivier Peslier-ridden Turtle Bowl (9-2) by five lengths, with Stormy River further back in third.

Pasquier said: "Every time I asked him for an effort he came up with the goods. He's a little special to get to know but this was a good performance and the distance is perfect for him."

Coquerelle maintained her unbeaten record when registering a cosy success in the Montjeu Coolmore Prix Saint-Alary.

Jean-Claude Rouget's filly soon took up the running in this 10-furlong Group One contest and set only a fair gallop until turning the screw as the field swung into the home straight.

When Christophe Lemaire asked the daughter of Zamindar to quicken, the response was impressive and the pair quickly established a decisive lead.

Peslier's mount Believe Me had a lot to do having trailed her five rivals for much of the race, but she began to motor late in the day.

Despite closing with every stride, the In The Wings filly was unable to get to grips with the 7-4 joint-favourite, who scored with a touch in hand.

"She'll go for the Prix de Diane," said Rouget afterwards.

The French Classic is also likely to feature the runner-up, whose trainer Jean-Marie Beguigne said: "She's a different filly on better going."

Claude-Rouget and Lemaire then landed a high-profile double when combining again to lift the Prix Vicomtesse Vigier with Lord Du Sud.

Lemaire, who was celebrating his 28th birthday, elected to employ similar tactics as he had with Coquerelle.

Wasting no time in sending the 7-2 chance into an early lead, he again set only a fair pace until pressing the button soon after entering the straight.

Lord Du Sud found an impressive burst in the rain-softened conditions when asked to put his seal on the race and passed the post with two and a half lengths to spare.

Ponte Tresa stayed on best of all to claim second at 10-1 after being settled in mid-division until the sprint for home ensued.

"We'll look at the Ascot Gold Cup for him next but he wouldn't want the ground to be too fast," said Rouget, whose soft-ground specialist was cut to 14-1 (from 16s) by William Hill.

Lemaire continued his birthday celebrations when making it three for the day on Hello My Lord in the Prix de Champerret later on the card.

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