Pierre Fertillet does well with his runners in claiming company and though Astara De Lune is the outsider of his trio in the 2m4.5f contest at Clairefontaine today (2.00pm), there are plenty of reasons for backing her to return to winning ways.

The nine year old looked as good as ever when winning twice at Cagnes at the turn of the year, but hasn’t been at her best in three completed starts since.

However, there was promise in her latest run over this course and distance in July, on what was her first outing for a couple of months.  She travelled kindly and worked her way through the field to challenge at the second-last, but a slow jump there didn’t help her chances and she just looked to tire on the run from the last to the line.

She should strip fitter for that outing and it is encouraging to see Morgan Regairaz booked for his only ride on the card, back on board for the first time since winning at Cagnes in January.

2.00pm Clairefontaine – 1pt win Astara De Lune @ 10-1 (Paddy Power, Betfair, Betway, 9-1 elsewhere)

The top two in the betting for the 7f nursery (3.10pm), Dubai Memories and Jazzy Wood, both finished runner-up in similar company last time, but neither piece of form looks strong and they had both run in claimers in the past.

With that in mind, I’m a little surprised that Mrira is as big as she is in the market this morning. It may not have been much of a maiden she won at Argentan last time (6f, good to soft), but she was much the best.  Her debut sixth at Saint-Cloud couldn’t have worked out much better and the return to this trip shouldn’t pose any problems.

Romain Le Dren Doleuze is enjoying his best season to date, with 20 winners at a 16% strike-rate, and the booking of Theo Bachelot catches the eye.

3.10pm Clairefontaine – 1pt win Mrira @ 7-1 (all firms)