Navan seeking Group One gold

Harry Dunlop

Harry Dunlop is hoping Robin Of Navan's previous successful appearance at the track will stand him in good stead ahead of a "tough task" in the Group One Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud on Sunday.

The American Post colt won the Grand Criterium de Saint-Cloud at the top level in November 2015 and goes back there on the back of his first victory since then in a Group Three contest at Chantilly two weeks ago.

"We were delighted with his win last time," said Dunlop, who is a little wary of the mile-and-a-half trip.

"He has run over that trip once and run well – we're not quite convinced about the trip, but we wanted to try it and it's a big pot.

"We have to step up, but at least we know he likes the track having won a Group One there before. Fingers crossed for a nice run, but we're well aware it's a tough task."

Francis-Henri Graffard's Canadian International winner Erupt was a close fourth on his reappearance in the Prix Ganay and bids to go one better than his second in this race 12 months ago.

"He's in good form and let's hope he can go one better than last year," said Alan Cooper, racing manager for owners the Niarchos family.

"The Ganay was his first race back since the Japan Cup and he ran respectably.

"I think for Sunday he should be very competitive, all things considered."

Hawkbill, who was two lengths and one place behind Erupt in the Ganay over an extended mile and a quarter on this course, takes his chance.

Last year's Coral-Eclipse winner, owned by Godolphin, warmed up for this race by finishing a good third to Highland Reel in the Coronation Cup.

His trainer Charlie Appleby believes a repeat of that effort should see him go close.

"Obviously, I was delighted with his performance in the Coronation Cup and has done well since the race," said Appleby.

"You couldn't fault his preparation going into the weekend.

"We were looking for a bit more rain but it will be good ground, no worse. For me, if he turns up and puts up the same performance he did at Epsom then he'll be a serious player."

The other British raider is Clive Cox's My Dream Boat, who was runner-up to Hawkbill in the Aston Park Stakes at Newbury six weeks ago.

The field also includes last year's winner Silverware and Zarak, who were second and third respectively in the Ganay.

On the same card, the Hugo Palmer-trained Vintage Folly could book her ticket to the Irish Oaks should she be successful in the Group Two Prix de Malleret over a mile and a half.

Palmer said: "I don't know about the Irish Oaks yet. She is in good form and if she were to win that and take it well and it were to be soft ground in Ireland it would be a conversation I could have with the owner."

Read More at Sky Sports Racing

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