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Almanzor Disappoints on Return

Wednesday, 16th August 2017

Top-class French galloper Almanzor (Wootton Bassett-Darkova, by Maria's Mon) disappointed when finishing unplaced behind First Sitting on his long awaited comeback in the Gr3 Prix Gontaut-Biron Hong Kong Jockey Club (10 furlongs) at Deauville overnight. Crowned champion European colt last year, the three-time Gr1 winner had not raced since winning last October’s Gr1 Champion Stakes at Ascot due to a virus that swept through trainer Jean-Claude Rouget's yard in April. Trainer Jeane-Claude Rouget hinted retirement could be on the cards for Almanzor. "It is very difficult for Almanzor. It is so hard to bring a horse to a race like this after being stopped for ten months, it’s impossible,” he told Racing Post. “He rose to such heights at three it is difficult to get that back. You have to remember the best of times with him and they were really very good. The race at Leopardstown was the best field I have ever seen and he beat them all so well, you have to remember that when you think of his future as a stallion.” Rouget added: "No decision has been made and we’ll have to talk with all the partners, but he seems to have come back to the stables fine.”

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