The maiden at Lyon looks weak enough, despite the numbers, and the Francis Graffard-trained newcomer Pay To Learn is too big at 4-1 to make a winning debut.


A €260,000 yearling, since when his half-sister Autumn Starlight has firmly established herself as a black-type filly, he is one of eight colts from his powerful yard to hold a Group 1 Grand Prix de Paris entry, which was made just six weeks ago, suggesting Pay To Learn has shown more than enough ability at home to win a race of this nature.


Graffard has been in blistering form this year, operating at a 29% strike-rate and three of his five runners in Lyon (La Soie and Parilly) maidens in 2024 have won.  That’s a stark contrast to the fortunes of the trainer of the favourite, fellow Chantilly handler Christophe Ferland, who made the move north last year and whose string are just struggling for form at present.


Well drawn in stall 2, he has the 2kg allowance for newcomers and with Marie Velon’s 1.5kg claim, he is getting handy weight from the two that head the market; the Ferland-trained Agoria (who did run very well first time up) and Mia Man, who is giving him 3.5kg – though he is still a danger, with Bachelot a good booking.


2pts win, 1pt place Pay To Learn @ 4-1 (most firms, 9/2 in places)