British raiders out of luck

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Britain was out of luck at Chantilly yesterday afternoon on the eve of the French Derby. Hever Golf Rose came out best of the overseas raiders in the Group Two Prix Du Gros- Chene in third place, beaten less than a length by Titus Livius and Wardara, writes Ian Davies.

Joe Naughton's mare was due to fly out of Paris last night for Sweden, where she runs in the Taby Vase on Tuesday. The Geoff Lewis-trained Passion For Life made the early running but faded to finish last, two places behind Peter Makin's Crowded Avenue. Titus Livius, the 4-5 winner, could appear next at Royal Ascot in the King's Stand Stakes.

Vagabond Chanteuse finished third in the Group Three Prix Royaumont half an hour later. Olivier Peslier set the pace on the Musidora Stakes second but was passed over a furlong out by Legend Maker, who went on to score by a length and a half from Kaffana with Tim Etherington's filly another half a length back.

The trainer said: "We had to try and ensure a strong gallop. She should have a break now and come back for something like the Park Hill Stakes."

Meanwhile, Europe's record money-earner Singspiel headed yesterday's five-day acceptors for next Friday's Vodafone Coronation Cup.

Sheikh Mohammed's five-year-old will be having his first run in Britain since he landed a Group Three event at Goodwood last September. In the subsequent nine months he has lifted the Japan Cup and Dubai World Cup as well as finishing second in the Breeders' Cup Turf.

The trainer Michael Stoute also left Jockey Club Stakes winner Whitewater Affair in the mile-and-a-half contest for which eight were declared yesterday. As expected, Henry Cecil has withdrawn last year's Oaks winner Lady Carla and relies instead on Derby runner-up Dushyantor.

Sole acceptor bidding to gain a fourth straight French victory is Le Destin, second in the Prix Ganay behind Helissio, who has been forced to miss the contest.