O'Brien has cause for celebration

 

Racing:Excelebration took advantage of a Group One with no Frankel in opposition by landing the Prix Jacques le Marois at Deauville for Aidan O’Brien and late substitute Christophe Soumillon. Having chased home Frankel in no less the four Group Ones, O’Brien unsurprisingly decided to avoid another clash with the greatest horse in the world in the Sussex Stakes and head to France instead.

It was no soft touch, however, with nine individual Group One winners in the race. John Gosden supplied two of those in Fallen For You and Elusive Kate, and it was the latter who tried to make all. Cityscape loomed up as a danger, with Soumillon hard at work on Excelebration, but as they entered the final furlong the Irish runner began to pick up and O’Brien’s four-year-old was well on top at the line.

Cityscape was just over a length away in second, with Elusive Kate just holding on for third from the fast-finishing Moonlight Cloud. Caspar Netscher ran a blinder in a close fifth.

Brian Meehan’s St James’s Palace winner Most Improved was disappointing. Ryan Moore had been due to ride Excelebration but was stood down by the racecourse doctor after a fall earlier in the day.

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