Sevenna's Knight lays down marker for Melbourne Cup

The Australian owned Sevenna's Knight enhanced his credentials as a future Melbourne Cup prospect when grinding out victory in the Group Two Prix Vicomtesse Vigier over just short of two miles at Paris Longchamp.

Mickael Barzalona had to stoke up the 6-4 favourite a couple of furlongs from home but he responded well to pressure to see off Shembala by a length and three-quarters.

It was another solid performance from the progressive four-year-old, trained by Frechman Andre Fabre, who landed the Group Three Prix de Barbeville by eight lengths last time out.

Terry Henderson, of Australian owners OTI Racing, said: "He's progressed a lot since he was a three-year-old and coming back for the Group Three and now this has really cemented our expectations for better things to come.

"It's a breed that does improve with age, it's well known that they tend to be better at four and five and that's one of the reasons we were encouraged to buy him, so I think it's simple maturity - mental and physical.

"We've certainly got a man who knows what he's doing when it comes to bringing these horses along, we can now maybe give him one more run in the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud and then bring him back again later in the year.

"He was put under a lot of pressure from the 800 (metres) and Sevenna's Knight was still able to sprint off that, which was a very encouraging sign that he's going to come back in distance and do well."

Asked about then possibly reverting to a staying trip for the Melbourne Cup, he added: "It's one of the options.

"I think what happens in the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud will dictate what direction we go in, we'll either stay for the serious races at the end of the season or we'll go to Melbourne."