Sea The Moon's Fantastic Moon Dominates Niel Rivals

Fantastic Moon & Rene PiechulekScoop Dyga


Liberty Racing's G1 Deutsches Derby hero Fantastic Moon (Ger) (Sea The Moon {Ger}–Frangipani {Ger}, by Jukebox Jury {Ire}) suffered a reversal following up in Munich's G1 Bayerisches Zuchtrennen last time and bounced back in style to dominate the closing stages of Sunday's G2 Qatar Prix Niel at ParisLongchamp.

The Sarah Steinberg trainee tanked forward to stalk the pace in third for the most part and improved into second along the false straight. Coming under pressure soon after turning for home, the 51-10 chance quickened to seize control approaching the final furlong and was ridden clear to easily outpoint G1 Grand Prix de Paris hero Feed The Flame (GB) (Kingman {GB}) by 2 1/2 lengths. Juddmonte's Bravais (GB) (Frankel {GB}) was another late closer and finished a half-length back in third.

“We made the correct decision not to run him last time [in the Sept. 3 G1 Grosser Preis von Baden] at Baden-Baden because the ground was overwatered,” said Liberty Racing's Lars-Wilhem Baumgarten. “The trainer and the jockey have done a great job and he's a great horse, but he needs good ground. Today's race lacked pace and it wasn't straightforward. However, he's easy to handle and very talented. In my opinion, he's the best winner of the German Derby since [his sire] Sea The Moon. He's still going strong at the end of his 3-year-old campaign and we're so happy for our syndicate. We have four horses and two of them are Group class. We'll be making a decision, as to where he goes next, on Monday.”

That decision looks unlikely to include a ticket to next month's Arc, according to Sarah Steinberg. “Rather than the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe, we're thinking about other possibilities,” the trainer revealed. “These include the Japan Cup and the Breeders' Cup.”

Pascal Bary feels there is more to come from runner-up Feed the Flame and considers the run vital education, despite defeat, en route to a tilt at next month's G1 Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe. “He picked up well, but he wasn't quite as ready as I thought and the last 100 metres seemed a bit of an eternity for him,” the trainer reflected. “Christophe Soumillon made sure the colt was given a lesson when it came to racing between horses, which is a good form of preparation, and he wasn't hard on him. Of course, it's always better to win than to be second. That said, the winner Fantastic Moon has every right to be considered a good colt. Feed The Flame will line up in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe and, if the ground were to ease, that would be even better!”

Juddmonte representative Claude Beniada was pleased with the effort of Bravais, who registered a career-high placing on pattern-race debut. “Obviously, this is the best performance of his career and Bravais is certainly more relaxed when he waits during a race,” he said. “At Deauville last time, he showed that he wouldn't be bothered by a longer distance. He's proved that today and it's very encouraging. He hasn't stopped improving and, if all goes well, he'll develop into a good 4-year-old.”


Pedigree Notes

Fantastic Moon, one of his sire's four Group 1 winners, is the second foal and lone scorer produced by a winning half-sister to G3 Sveaas Minnelop victor Fearless Hunter (Ger) (Alhaarth {Ire}) and Listed Arnfinn Lund Minnelop third Fil Rouge (Ger) (Lord Of England {Ger}). The March-foaled bay, who is from the family of MGISW sire Street Boss (Street Cry {Ire}), is kin to a yearling filly by Starspangledbanner (Aus) and a weanling filly by Masar (Ire). His second dam Firedance (Ger) (Lomitas {GB}) is a half-sister to G3 Rockfel S. victrix Germane (GB) (Distant Relative [Ire}) and the dual stakes-winning G3 Preis der Deutschen Einheit runner-up Fabriano (GB) (Shardari {Ire}). Germane, in turn, is the dam of stakes-winning GI Hollywood Derby third Lucky Chappy (Ire) (High Chaparral {Ire}) and Listed Kolner Stuten Meile runner-up Granted (Fr) (Cadeaux Genereux {GB}).

Sunday, ParisLongchamp, France
QATAR PRIX NIEL-G2, €130,000, ParisLongchamp, 9-10, 3yo, 12fT, 2:33.20, gd.
1–FANTASTIC MOON (GER), 128, c, 3, by Sea The Moon (Ger)
1st Dam: Frangipani (Ger), by Jukebox Jury (Ire)
2nd Dam: Firedance (Ger), by Lomitas (GB)
3rd Dam: Fraulein Tobin, by J. O. Tobin
(€49,000 Ylg '21 BBAGS). O-Liberty Racing 2021; B-Graf & Grafin von Stauffenberg (GER); T-Sarah Steinberg; J-Rene Piechulek. €74,100. Lifetime Record: G1SW-Ger, 7-5-1-1, €620,700. Werk Nick Rating: A+++ *Triple Plus*. Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree, or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree.
2–Feed The Flame (GB), 128, c, 3, Kingman (GB)–Knyazhna (Ire), by Montjeu (Ire). 'TDN Rising Star'. (€270,000 Ylg '21 ARQAUG). O-Ecurie Jean-Louis Bouchard; B-Ecurie des Monceaux, Lordship Stud & Clear Light SAS (GB); T-Pascal Bary. €28,600.
3–Bravais (GB), 128, c, 3, Frankel (GB)–Lucky Kristale (GB), by Lucky Story. 1ST GROUP BLACK TYPE. O-Juddmonte; B-Juddmonte Farms (East) Ltd (GB); T-Andre Fabre. €13,650.
Margins: 2HF, HF, 2. Odds: 5.10, 0.50, 14.00.
Also Ran: Marhaba Ya Sanafi (Ire), Greenland (Ire), King Of Records (Fr), Goldenas (Ire). Scratched: Winter Pudding (Fr). Video, sponsored by FanDuel TV.

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