The HH Sheikh Abdullah bin Khalifa Al Thani-owned NEEF (General) proved the best of the bunch in the Prix Chéri Bibi, a Group 3, 1,900m contest for three-year-old male pure Arabians (Gr 3/PA) at La Teste-de-Buch, France on Saturday, 8 September. Didier Guillemin’s charge gave a sensational run, under jockey Olivier Peslier, to score his first victory ever in his second outing, confirming his excellence and class as a horse to keep eyes on with a promising future. Following his runner-up position in his debut in July, NEEF arrived at La Teste-de-Buch as a favourite, not only to land his first triumph, but also to record his first group title.
Quick in front of the field, NEEF was never preoccupied by his rivals and he won from pillar to post the Prix Chéri Bibi. Indeed, he kept accelerating when his jockey asked him to, leaving Bel’Izam (Nizam) in second place, half a length from the winner. Sea Bird Al Maury completed the podium, two lengths and a half behind.
“We would have preferred to keep him behind, hidden”, explained Olivier Peslier, “but he started to pull, so I went in front. Once in the lead, he relaxed himself and it was perfect. He accelerated well in the home straight and the job was done.”
NEEF is also the first Group winner, in France, for his champion sire, GENERAL.