Highly-fancied French trotter Ready Cash, led by young driver Franck Nivard, is the winner of this year’s one million euro Prix d’Amerique.
The 90th edition of this prestigious international race was staged at the Hippodrome de Vincennes in Paris yesterday on the long distance of 2,700m. Eighteen horses lined up for this final which attracted a crowd of over 50,000 spectators.
It was Italian Lana de Rio (Santo Mollo) which surged ahead in the early stages but, midway through the distance, this Italian mare changed pace and was disqualified. It was overtaken by Swedish Maharajah (Orjan Kihlstrom) which opened a length lead from Ready Cash and Nuit Torride (Bernard Biton).
With 200 metres to go, Nivard steered Ready Cash ahead and this horse went on to pass the post first in an average time of 1:12.1 per kilometre from Maharajah, Olga du Biwetz (Eric Raffin) and last year’s winner Oyonnax (Sebastien Ernault).
This was Ready Cash’s first win at the Prix d’Amerique while Nivard achieved his second victory following his maiden success two years ago with Meaulnes du Corta.
One of the trainers of second-placed horse Maharajah is Massimo Vassallo. He has been working as a professional trainer in Sweden since 2004.
Originally published in The Times on the 31 January 2011