Royal Meeting, having just his second run, was the impressive winner of the seven-furlong G1 Criterium International at Chantilly, France, on Sunday, 28 October.
The two-year-old Invincible Spirit colt out of South African Lecture mare Rock Opera, followed up his debut win in a Yarmouth maiden last month with a smooth success from Hermosa, a filly with excellent form which included another G1 second on her previous start.
The Saeed bin Suroor-trained runner, partnered for the first time by Christophe Soumillon, raced a bit keenly exiting the stalls and was held up in third as Kessaar set a good pace.
Royal Meeting was switched out wide to make his challenge with a quarter-mile to go and ran on strongly to lead in the final half-furlong.
He won going away from Hermosa by three quarters of a length despite Christophe Soumillon easing down. His time was 1m 27.19s on good to soft ground.
Saeed bin Suroor, on his way from Australia to Louisville, Kentucky for the Breeders’ Cup, remarked: “Royal Meeting won really well.“He is an improving horse and will now spend the winter in Dubai.
“It was a big step in class for him today, but he has shown he is a class horse.
“I have always liked him and been pleased with his work in the work in the mornings.
“We will be looking to go to the British Classics next year – the 2,000 Guineas and Derby. His Highness Sheikh Mohammed will make the decisions.”
Hugh Anderson, Godolphin’s Managing Director in UK and Dubai, was present at Chantilly.
He reported: “Christophe was delighted with Royal Meeting and thinks he is a proper horse.
“This is a second G1 victory for a two-year-old trained by Saeed in France this month, following on from Royal Marine’s Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere victory at Longchamp.
“Saeed has also had two G1 wins in Australia recently and his horses are in fantastic form.”
Christophe Soumillion added: “Royal Meeting is a very well-balanced horse and I was always confident of winning in the straight.”
ROCK OPERA was an Equus Champion 2yo filly in 2005, with 4 wins and earnings of R503,125 at 2. Her wins include the Allan Robertson Fillies Championship Gr1, The Fillies Nursery Gr2 and she placed 3 times, including a third in the UAE Guineas, (L).
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