A student at the Higher Institute of Media in Toulouse (ISCPA), Edouard Bertrand also manages digital communication for Ecurie Griff. As the Critérium des 3 Ans arrives in a big beat, he delves into his memories and rewinds the film of Jaguar Griff. “Unlike Hermès and Ixana, her first two foals which she had rejected during the foaling, Roxane accepted Jaguar, confides the young man of 19 years. She was so used to being the center of attention that it took her a long time to step into her role as a broodmare and today, of all our mares, she is without doubt the best mother. I don’t know if there’s a connection, but still, it’s his best product to date.” Sébastien Guarato very quickly identified his potential: “The colt qualified thirty meters ahead of his field, in Caen. Beyond the clock (1’17”6), there was the way. Sébastien had warned us that he had a big engine and that it was, by far, Roxane’s best product. Crushed silver (18/10) for his debut in Reims, Jaguar Griff finishes at the foot of the podium. “He was lost and very cold, nuances our interlocutor, and still finished fourth in Just Love You. What encouraged us was that he wasn’t sweating or puffing at all when he returned to the scales.” Winner during his next outing at Graignes, his only victory to date, Jaguar Griff slowly but surely climbed the ladder. “His only poor performance, at the start of the year at Vincennes, included an apology because we later realized that he had a small problem with one foot, enlightens Edouard Bertrand. Romain Hue, who takes care of him on a daily basis, took all the necessary care and after a great comeback at Enghien, the horse is up in class and has continued to push his limits.” His partner with the guardian angel of Face Time Bourbon works wonderfully. “We have total confidence in Romain, because we break in our horses at his father’s (Didier Hue) for more than ten years, he recalls. He is also the one who takes care ofIseria Griff and as he was driving it, we said to ourselves: why not Jaguar? Take a good look at his races: Romain gave him very good runs each time, making him finish. It’s perfect for the colt’s morale.” From there to beat the elite of his promotion? “Nobody knows their limits, not even Sébastien. Jaguar is anything but precocious and we didn’t expect to see it at this level so early. The goal is to age it. The Abel Bassigny Prize was the trigger (Editor’s note: C3Q2 in which he ranked 3rd at 68/1) and lastly, in the Prix Jacques de Vaulogé, he covered the last 500 meters on the foot of 1’09”8. Only Juninho Dry, the winner, did better (1’09”2). He is not demonstrative but has inherited his mother’s mind and motor.
“My mother, horses are her life”
Led by his parents, owner-breeders in Saint-Sauveur-en-Puisaye (Yonne), the Ecurie Griff now has seventeen brood mares. “This is the first time that all our mares are in foal, he points out. And it’s gonna be sports next year (laughs) ! My parents are alone to manage the breeding. My mother, horses are her life. She hasn’t taken a vacation for I don’t know how many years and she will do this activity until the end. We do everything as a family, even if my younger brother, Louis, unlike me, is not at all passionate. In addition to our seventeen brood mares, we have thirty horses running under our colours, without taking into account the “L”s which have returned from breaking in. To ensure financial balance, we sometimes sell broodmares, those that do not reproduce well, because we are in a logic of improving the pedigree. Stallions can be chosen to fill the faults of the mother, even if the rule is not intangible. “A mare like Hanya Griff, he explains, a big Sam Bourbon beautiful black, has been to Galius. I doubt that their product is 1m55 at the withers (laughs) ! A very tough mare, we will try to bring speed to her production. The perfect example is Valana Griff who produced Irwinn Griff. Sebastian (Guarato) had always said that without being a crack, she had a bigger engine than her and that she needed stallions going fast. So we were at Winner Booster, a trotter that is both tough and fast. But we do not claim to have the miracle solution. We try to be logical and do the best we can.”
Continuing the family tradition
Holder of stallion shares (Fabulous Wood, Follow You and Feeling Cash), with a weakness for love youthe Bertrand family also endorses the status of owner. “Once the foals have been broken in by Didier (Hue), we mainly work with four coaches: Sébastien Guarato, Laurent Claude Abrivard, Loïc Lerenard and Yannick Henry. The meeting with Yannick happened by chance. Gypsy Griff and Madder Griff were at the time with Matthieu Abrivard. He found them a little limited and better on the right. He suggested we go to his brother-in-law’s, in the Southwest. We let ourselves be tempted and he qualified Gitane in 1’15”6 in Bordeaux before stringing together three successes. It worked really well very quickly. He has Julius Griffa very good future foal, Irwinn Griff, Ibiza Griff, very good at riding. He is like the people we like to work with: friendly, professional and transparent.” And Ecurie Griff distributes its workforce according to the strengths of each of its trainers. “Yannick Henry has recovered Kenzo Griffa love you which is highly esteemed and which is a copy-paste ofIn Love Meslois, Kaid Griffalso Julius’ brother, and Kismie Griffa daughter ofA guy from Héripré with which it will take some time. Kashmir Griff and Kezado Griff went to Laurent Claude Abrivard. The first is a Mystical Village and Laurent Claude is successful with his products; the second will be able according to Didier (Hue) to alternate hitched and ridden as he had done Atwood Griff. We will have one of the best possible jockeys with Alexandre (Shelter). Loïc Lerenard, he is very good at reviving our stalled horses. With Ines Griffarriving from Sébastien Guarato, he took his time and earned nearly €35,000 this year.” When you ask Edouard Bertrand if he intends, one day, to succeed his parents at the head of the family breeding, the answer is not long in coming. “Yes, that’s my goal, he confesses. Now, the world of horses remains very uncertain and so I have my plan B with journalism. As long as my mother has the desire and the strength to continue, we won’t change anything because she is so happy like that. But the day she says stop, I will be ready to take over and perpetuate this family passion.”
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Criterium Day – Jaguar Griff ready to roar in the Critérium des 3 Ans | ParisTurf
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