Francois Rohaut is hoping Qurbaan can guarantee his Good Friday place with victory in the Listed Prix Saonois (2.45pm, eight runners) at Cagnes-sur-Mer on Saturday, February 18.
The mile Polytrack contest is a Fast-Track Qualifier for the £150,000 Sun Bets Mile at Lingfield Park on All-Weather Championships Finals Day, Good Friday, April 14.
Qurbaan (Francois Xavier-Bertras) is unbeaten in four starts on Polytrack and produced a career-best last time out when defeating British raider Sovereign Debt by a short-neck in the Listed Prix Luthier at Deauville on December 17.
The Hamdan Al Maktoum-owned colt also goes well on turf, having been second and third respectively in mile Listed races at Toulouse and Chantilly in the autumn.
Rohaut’s other runner Cersei (Stephane Pasquier) was previously trained in Newmarket by David Simcock. The four-year-old filly is tackling a mile for the first time following a comfortable victory in a six and a half furlong conditions race at Deauville on December 14.
Rohaut said today: “Qurbaan is perfect. He has spent the month in Cagnes-sur-Mer to prepare for this race with the hope that he can win and qualify for the final at Lingfield. We are very happy and expect him to run a good race.
“Unfortunately, we did not see much of his win at Deauville because there was so much fog! But he broke the track record and the jockey said he was fantastic.
“He is the perfect horse for these kind of races because he loves the layout and surface of these All-Weather tracks.
“He had a long break in the spring last year after his bad run in Dubai. He had a little injury, so we gave him time and he has come back perfect.
“The question for Cersei is will she stay a mile or not. She is good enough with the weight allowance to run a good race.
“She is here to get some black type and then after one more run she will be qualified for any race at Lingfield. We will speak with connections and see what they want to do.
“Qurbaan will only run at Lingfield if he wins at the weekend because otherwise he is not qualified.”
The line-up also features Almorox (Christophe Ferland/Julien Auge) who got the better of Noozhoh Canarias in a Spanish Listed race in October.