Prix d’Amérique 2024: No Favorite, All Favorites
Explaining the significance of winning the Prix d’Amérique to those unfamiliar with the history and prestige of this race remains quite challenging. Owners, trainers, drivers, and those involved in the world of stables dream of seeing their horse triumph on the charcoal track of Paris-Vincennes on the last Sunday of January, to enter a legend that has persisted since 1920.
The same enthusiasm grips every year those who, even as mere spectators, hope to witness the victory of a native horse or at least one with Italian colors.
The Biennium of 2001-2002 with Il Capitano
On January 28, 2001, for all Italians and especially for the fortunate ones present that day at the Parisian racetrack, it was an unforgettable moment. Tears of joy were shed amidst the fluttering of tricolor flags and the singing of the Italian national anthem for the victory of Varenne, a horse born in Italy with Italian colors.
It was necessary to go back fifty years in the history of the French race to find our flag present, thanks to the victory of Mighty Ned, a horse born in the United States but purchased by the Italian Franco Tondini and subsequently brought to Italy.
On January 27, 2002, for those less informed, Varenne achieved a repeat victory on that same track, a win that crowned him as the greatest trotter of all time.
Vivid Wise As, 10 Years and Still Going Strong
In the 2024 edition of the Prix de l’Amérique, Italy will be represented by Vivid Wise As and Ampia Mede Sm. The standard-bearer of the Bivans stable, trained by Alessandro Gocciadoro, will once again be driven by Matthieu Abrivard.
His history with the Prix d’Amérique currently includes a fourth-place finish in 2022 and little luck in the 2020 and 2023 editions. The class is undeniable, as is the hope of Antonio Somma, owner of Bivans, who twice (in 2020 and 2021) had the joy of winning, with his partners, the Prix d’Amérique thanks to Face Time Bourbon, purchased for €180,000, and which has earned almost €3 million in his career.
The Queen is Me
There are very real possibilities for victory for Ampia Mede Sm. The daughter of Ganymede, raised in Nettuno by the Sandro Moscati stable since 2021, has been in training in France under Fabrice Souloy.
Her second-place finish in last year’s Prix d’Amérique behind Hooker Berrry is a strong indicator, enough for the Se.Fin stable to consider her a possible queen of the Prix d’Amérique 2024.
All Favorites, No Clear Favorite
This 2024 edition of the Prix d’Amérique is particularly special, with many excellences on the track, yet no clear standout. The six-year-old Idao de Tillard, trained by Thierry Duvaldestin, receives favorable opinions due to six victories in his last six outings.
There is speculation about seeing the six-year-old Inmarosa, guided by Leo Abrivard and an excellent second in Belgique, in the winners’ circle. The reigning seven-year-old champion, Hooker Berry, who hasn’t won in his last seven races, leaves doubts about the possibility of a repeat victory.
Finally, the presence of 13 French horses among the eighteen starters (with 3 Swedes and 2 Italians completing the field) leads many to believe that the playing of “La Marseillaise” during the awards ceremony is probable.
One, None, Hundred Thousand
One owner will rejoice, the owner of the winning horse who will take home a good portion of the €1 million prize fund of the Prix d’Amérique. None of the horses in this edition can beat the record of four wins held by Ourasi.
None of the drivers can match the eight career victories achieved by Jean-Renè Gougeon. Hundreds of thousands, even millions, around the world will be watching the race live, with hopes among bettors of repeating the record win of 2010 thanks to the success of the French horse Oyonnax, a true outsider of the Parisian race, paid out at 173 to 1.
All that’s left is to go and watch, and for many, to dream with eyes wide open.
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