The third prep for the Prix d'Amérique, the Prix de Bourgogne, was raced Sunday afternoon at the Vincennes track in Paris and the French horsemen with the top trotters thought it was time to show their cards after earlier eye-openers.
Aggressive drives were made by Jos Verbeeck, who sent Timoko immediately to the lead, where they were challenged strongly by Vanika du Ruel and Franck Anne. The speed was furious and they opened in 1:46 mile rate for the first 600 meters, with neither wanting to give in. Then they slowed down somewhat, but the pace was still a blazing mile rate of 1:48 for the first kilometer!
Ready Cash, who had won the race in two of the past three years, had a perfect trip from the pocket. The 2013 Prix d'Amérique winner Royal Dream also had a perfect trip outside Ready Cash.
The first challenger on the backstretch was Texas Charm, with Julien Dubois in the sulky, and they managed to reach the tiring leader before the last turn. The only one that could follow was the Prix du Bourbonnais winner Triode de Felliere and Anthony Barrier.
Ready Cash and Nivard got open space to challenge, but Ready Cash did not have speed enough and ended third, but will certainly be sharper the last Sunday in January. Tiego d'Etang came from last in the field to take fourth while Roxane Griff was fifth.
Texas Charm was timed in the new Prix de Bourgogne race record of 1:52.3 over 2,100 meters. He earned 54,000 euros for the win.--By Lars G. Palm