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Sharif sees his new star Lixirova take centre stage.

Byline: Desmond Stoneham

Report France Prix Miesque G3 Maisons-Laffitte, 7f turf, 2yo fillies OMAR SHARIF came back from a film festival in Egypt to see his Classic contender Lixirova win her first Group race in style from British challenger Absolute Music and Jamie Spencer at Maisons-Laffitte yesterday, writes Desmond Stoneham.

Ridden for the first time in public by Gregory Benoit, Lixirova settled comfortably at the head of affairs in the Group 3 Prix Miesque and seemed to enjoy herself on the testing ground.

She was shaken up with just over a furlong left to run and passed the post two lengths ahead of Absolute Music, with the Spanish-trained Ercolani half a length away third.

Trainer David Smaga was landing a hat-trick in the Miesque, and said: "She's very good but very difficult. It was a first Group success for Gregory who rides her at home. The filly enjoyed the cut in the ground, but that's it for this season.

"Next year she will run in the Prix Imprudence and then either the 1,000 Guineas or the Poule d'Essai des Pouliches. Lixirova could go to Newmarket as she acts well on a straight track."

A delighted Sharif added: "We've always liked this filly a lot but once she sees grass you can't stop her.

"In a few days' time, I'm off to San Domingo for a holiday. The president has lent me his villa and beach."

Absolute Music was putting in her best work at the finish, and trainer Robert Cowell said: "She ran a blinder and never cracked. She is now off to Dubai for the winter."

Spencer went one better in the Group 2 Criterium de Maisons-Laffitte when winning on the Kevin Ryan-trained Our Jonathan. Ryan said: "He stayed on well and is a very good horse."
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Title Annotation:Sports
Publication:The Racing Post (London, England)
Date:Nov 4, 2009
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