On only his second racecourse start, the Al Shaqab Racing-owned Al Hakeem showed an excellent turn of foot to take the Prix Du Rond Du Chene at Chantilly on Sunday.
Trained by Jean-Claude Rouget, the two-year-old colt was having his second career start, following a fourth placed finish at Deauville just over a month ago.
Always well positioned, Al Hakeem easily took the fourteen-runner contest under a confident ride from jockey Coralie Pacault.
Simca Mille took the field along at a steady pace through the early stages of the contest. Al Hakeem was settled in fifth place, against the rail and travelled with plenty of zest.
On rounding the home turn, the field began to bunch up and Al Hakeem was caught in a pocket but travelled best of all. Once in the clear at the 300m pole, Al Hakeem was switched outside runners and closed strongly under hands and heels.
Hitting the front 100m from the line, the colt shot clear of his rivals and went on to score by two and a half lengths from Simca Mille in second. Lev ran well and finished a further length back in third.
Winning trainer Jean Claude Rouget said after the race
“He has shown there what we have always thought of him. He debuted in a very good race and he was really primed for this race. He has a super mentality and is very impressive to look at. I think he is good and looking at him there, there was plenty to like. I am not sure that he would go on soft ground but so far he has done everything we have asked of him on the sand. He will have a nice winter break now”
Bred by his owners Al Shaqab Racing, Al Hakeem is by champion stallion Siyouni. His dam Jadhaba won her first two starts before finishing third in a Group 3 at Saint-Cloud. She has also produced winner
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