Graffard targeting Champions Day with The Revenant
Francis-Henri Graffard has his sights set on Qipco Champions Day with The Revenant, while Wooded has not been completely ruled out of the Breeders’ Cup.
The trainer enjoyed an incredible Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe weekend, winning the Prix Daniel Wildenstein and the Prix de l’Abbaye with the aforementioned duo, and came within a neck of winning the big race itself with In Swoop.
While In Swoop is done for the year, there are still big targets ahead for Graffard.
“The Revenant will go to Ascot, that’s the plan, but Wooded won’t go there,” said Graffard.
“The Revenant is entered in the QEII (Queen Elizabeth II Stakes) and he’ll have another go – he ran in the race last year and was second.
“We think he will come on a lot for his run on Saturday, he came out of that race well so the plan is to go to Ascot. He should get his ground again, hopefully.”
Wooded reportedly prefers good ground and six furlongs, so to win the Abbaye on heavy was no mean feat.
“We haven’t had a chat about supplementing him for Ascot, so I don’t think we’ll do that,” said Graffard.
“He’s only three, sprinters tend to get better with age.
“He did get a ‘win and you’re in’ entry for the Breeders’ Cup, so we’ll see about if we go or not. At the moment no decision has been made.
“He’s a much better horse on good ground, we know that, so to win on heavy was great.”
In Swoop won the German Derby in July and relished the testing ground, just failing to reel in Sottsass.
“With In Swoop, I was thrilled with how he ran, but at the same time frustrated he came so close to winning an Arc,” said Graffard.
“He had no excuses. There was no pace in the race and my horse is not a sprinter, so that was not on our side.
“It was a great performance and he proved he was one of the best three-year-olds in Europe.
“He will be a fantastic horse next year. He could possibly go up in trip, but there are some nice races over a mile and a half for him. Until he is not competitive over a mile and a half, we will keep him at that distance.”