The 2020 Prix du Moulin (Sunday 6 September) is this weekend’s Group 1 highlight from Longchamp. Older horses have won 11 of the 20 editions of this prestigious one-mile contest this century, while three-year-olds have won 9, and both categories are equally presented with three of the six-runner field this year.
Circus Maximus was only a 3-year-old when winning the race in 2019, when he had just a neck to spare over fellow Irish raider Romanised. Circus Maximus was getting 4lb on that occasion, but he beat Romanised by much further last time at Deauville. However, it’s worth pointing out that Romanised also disappointed at that course last season and there might not be much between them this time.
Splitting the Irish pair at Deaville was the 4-year-old French challenger Persian King, who has won both his previous starts at Longchamp. His overall form leaves him with something to find with most of his rivals, but Longchamp could be his track.
Victor Ludorum represents France’s Classic generation. He won the French 2,000 Guineas earlier in the season but has since finished behind the runner-up twice over 10-furlongs. He may appreciate the step back to a mile on a course where he’s won twice, but the form of the French 3-year-olds doesn’t look as strong as that of their English and Irish counterparts.
Pinatubo came back to winning form in France last time, but that Group 1 lacked the strength in depth of this race. It was also over 7-furlongs and, as he has already been outstayed over a mile twice this season in Group 1s, there must be a good chance that the likely favourite will be vulnerable in the final furlong.
The horse I’m expecting to take advantage of the chinks in Pinatubo’s armour is Siskin, and he’s our tip for the Prix de Moulin 2020.
Siskin was unbeaten in four races as a 2-year-old and confirmed the promise of that form by showing an electric turn-of-foot to win the Irish 2,000 Guineas. Lope Y Fernandez was 2½-lengths behind him that day but was beaten just ¾-length by Pinatubo last time.
Siskin was beaten ¾-length by Circus Maximum last time, but he didn’t seem to relish the undulations of Goodwood. I expect him to be more streetwise here and, at five-times the price of the favourite, I think he looks the value bet.
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