Usherette can provide French racing with a timely lift by winning the Kingdom of Bahrain Sun Chariot Stakes at Newmarket.
Questions were asked on Arc day last Sunday as the home side suffered a complete wipeout, with British and Irish horses winning all six races on the card.
But in times of hardship, France can, and probably always will, turn towards Andre Fabre for inspiration.
The genius Chantilly handler is responsible for Usherette as she looks to follow in the hoofprints of Esoterique, the Fabre mare who won this race two years ago.
Fabre’s latest Sun Chariot contender has already had a distinguished career, and would be an utterly worthy winner of the Group One over a mile.
Things have not gone her way this year, however, as she was a little unfortunate in the Prix d’Ispahan in May.
She then endured even greater misfortune as she attempted to claim back-to-back renewals of the Duke of Cambridge Stakes at Royal Ascot.
Usherette only went down by a length to Qemah, but she was rarely afforded the luxury of a clean path and simply had to ride out the storm for most of the race. The five-year-old daughter Shamardal was then sent to Deauville for the Prix Rothschild, but she did not appear totally at ease with having to make the running and eventually weakened into sixth place.
A return to more protracted tactics did its job in a Listed race at Maisons-Laffitte last month when she stayed on with plenty of vim to score by a short neck.
This year’s Sun Chariot looks right up to scratch, but Usherette is a seriously smart horse when things go her way and yet she is likely to be available at nice odds.
Fabre can also hit the target at Ascot when Waldgeist runs in the Cumberland Lodge Stakes.
This Galileo colt is already a Group One winner and also finished a close second in the French Derby.
And though big things were expected of him in the Irish equivalent, history now tells us that to finish fourth – beaten just two lengths – behind Capri, Cracksman and Wings Of Eagles was far from a shabby performance.
Waldgeist seemed to get a mile and a half well enough at the Curragh, so this Group Three against his elders looks there for the taking as he gets plenty of weight from all but one of his rivals.
It would be a bit of a shock if Blue Point came unstuck in the Group Three Bengough Stakes, while Johnny Barnes should be happier than at Haydock last week when he steps back up to seven furlongs for the totescoop6 Challenge Cup.
Good prize-money on offer at Redcar, with Hunni taken to scoop the big pot in the Listed Two-Year-Old Trophy.
Tom Clover’s filly has a light weight, won well at Newmarket last time and does not mind running when there is cut in the ground.
What’s not to like?
TURF TALK TIPS
ASCOT: 1.50 Waady, 2.25 Waldgeist (next best), 3.00 Blue Point, 3.35 Johnny Barnes, 4.10 Eternally, 4.45 Willytheconqueror.
FONTWELL: 1.55 Moon Trip, 2.30 Free Stone Hill, 3.05 Azzerti, 3.40 Ashoka, 4.15 Battle Of Ideas, 4.50 Venetian Lad, 5.20 Atomic Rumble.
NEWMARKET: 1.30 Old Persian, 2.05 Kassia, 2.40 USHERETTE (NAP), 3.15 Astrologist, 3.50 Scenery, 4.25 Soul Silver, 5.00 Blushing Rose, 5.35 Elysian Fields.
REDCAR: 1.40 Big Kitten, 2.10 Hello My Sunshine, 2.45 Leopard, 3.20 Hunni (treble), 3.55 Jallota, 4.30 Silvery Moon, 5.05 Katebird, 5.40 Monte Cinq.
WOLVERHAMPTON: 5.45 Considered Opinion, 6.15 Grimeford Lane, 6.45 Go Far, 7.15 Data Protection, 7.45 Sunchisetagioo, 8.15 Ode To Glory, 8.45 Berlusca, 9.15 Mr C.