This unfashionably-bred horse sprang a 25/1 surprise in the Group 1 Prix du Jockey Club on his twelfth start, and although he won the Group 3 Prix La Force two months before, and the Group 2 Prix Niel just over three months later, he was found wanting when stepped up to all-aged Group 1 company.
The Haras du Mesnil stallion is a son of dual Group 1 star Chichicastenango (by Smadoun), who also gave us Vision D'Etat, the 2008 Prix du Jockey Club hero and four-times a Group 1 star in total.
His dam, Saonoise (by Homme De Loi), won five races and was placed 33 times, her siblings include a six-times winner who earned 42 places, and there are some prolific winners in the third generation of the family too.
The fourth dam, Scalene, had a Saint-Cloud listed success among her seven wins, her 11-times scorer Sarepta won the Group 3 Grand Prix de Vichy and two listed contests, and Samovar won a listed race and five other events.
These are not the sort of pedigree credentials that one expects to see on a Group 1 winner and it makes Saonois an unknown quantity.
SAONOIS (FR) – b.2009 – Chichicastenango – Saonoise, 7 wins inc Prix du Jockey Club (Gr1), Prix Niel (Gr2), Prix La Force (Gr3), Prix Policeman (L). Sire in France. First foals in 2015.
YEARLINGS CATALOGUED (updated)
bc - Celtic Air (by Kaldounevees) Arqana €22,000
chf - La Barinia (by Russian Blue) Osarus Nov €9,000
bf – Raquette (by Muhtathir) Osarus Sept €13,000
bc – Senanques (by Apeldoorn) Arqana Feb €7,500
bc - Sweet Lady Jane (by Kaldounevees) Arqana Oct €18,000
Sires of Stallions