Racing: Charlton stunned by ascent of Patavellian

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The Independent Online

Patavellian astounded just about everyone, including his trainer, Roger Charlton, when stepping up into Group One company and down to five furlongs to lead home a clean sweep for British stables in the Prix de l'Abbaye. The Trader finished well for second, with The Tatling third and Acclamation fourth.

"I didn't expect him to win," Charlton said. "This time last year he was rated 64 - nearly a selling plater. The owner wanted to run. I thought running over five furlongs was impossible."

Sir Michael Stoute was another shocked trainer, surprised by winning the Prix de l'Opera with Zee Zee Top, who held off Aidan O'Brien's Yesterday by a head. "We brought her here hoping to get in the frame," Stoute said.

There was more disappointment for O'Brien when Necklace finished unplaced in the Prix Marcel Boussac behind Denebola (12-1 with William Hill and Coral for the 1,000 Guineas). The trainer supplied three of the six runners in the Prix Jean Luc Lagardere but they were no match for the Richard Hughes-ridden American Post, who is 14-1 and 12-1 with William Hill for next season's 2,000 Guineas and Derby respectively.

In the Prix du Cadran, Persian Punch hated the ground and was down the field behind Elie Lellouche's Westerner.

Racing in brief: Intersky Falcon beats back in front in Tipperary hurdle

* Intersky Falcon re-established his Champion Hurdle claims with a second successive win in the John James McManus Memorial Hurdle at Tipperary yesterday. The Jonjo O'Neill-trained six-year-old justified odds of 8-13 and lead his market rival, Back In Front, throughout. Liam Cooper drove Intersky Falcon home 12 lengths clear of Edward O'Grady's hope, who won the Supreme Novices' Hurdle at Cheltenham in March. Paddy Power cut Intersky Falcon to 12-1 from 16-1 for the 2004 Champion, but have Back In Front as 7-1 second favourite behind Rooster Booster on 4-1.

* Dubai Destination, brilliant winner of the Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot, but last in the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes last time out, has been retired to stud. The Godolphin-owned four-year-old, a son of Kingmambo, beat Hawk Wing at Royal Ascot. His trainer, Saeed bin Suroor said: "He beat the best miler at Ascot and showed just what a good horse he was."

* Freefourinternet, the ex-Brian Meehan-trained colt, has the Breeders' Cup Mile as his target after victory in the Grade Two Kelso Breeders' Cup Handicap at Belmont on Saturday.

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