Go retro with… Alain Roussel

What is the best horse you have trained?

The one who has been the most impressive due to her almost unrivaled career is Queen of Corta. On a sentimental level, it is target artists. A horse from our breeding that won the Critérium des 4 Ans with my son Nicolas and had the potential for a Prix d’Amérique. He broke the record of Baune tenor. Unfortunately, he died of colic.
go back to queen, she won thirty-three races, including thirty-two groups! She started to show her potential at the end of her 4 year old and didn’t wait for much after that. And even then there were a lot of distance returns and she won nineteen times with a handicap of twenty-five yards. You don’t see that very often now. Only the Prix de Cornulier and Ile-de-France were on the same post at the time. His track record is great. Le Cornulier, three times the Prix de l’Ile-de-France, Normandy, the Elites, the Centaurs. It was crazy stuff!

A horse that has shaped you and that you would like to have trained?

That’s for sure My tourbillon. A very beautiful horse, great in gait, who never made mistakes. A racing car, one might say. At the same time there was dungeon kittenLed by my brother Michel, but it wasn’t easy for him to drive, for example. My tourbillonwe got the impression that Jean-Pierre could do a lot of what he wanted.

The greatest driver you’ve seen evolved?

It’s difficult (laughs)! How not to quote Jean-Michel Bazire when we see his career? He obviously has something to push a horse on. I will still quote Franck Nivard who is also a great champion.

What about jockeys?

Ah, without hesitation, my lifelong friend who I’ve worked with. His career is immense. It’s Michel Lenoir. Mounted he was the most complete man with a very good position. He was devilishly effective on complicated horses, full insurance!

Your best encounter of your career?

Of course Michel again! We met in college and became friends. He started spending weekends at home and vice versa. He already loved horses but when he was with us it definitely convinced him he was in love with them. My parents often said that Michel is Roussel’s fourth son. So I humbly participated in his professional success, if I do say so myself. We met when we were 12, he followed me when he was 15 and my father was his first teacher. We worked together for a long time and when he settled in he mostly rode my horses. Our association has existed for a long time.

Michel Lenoir and Alain Roussel side by side after a win for Nicolas.

A trainer who impressed you?

I only knew him as a kid but I’ve read a lot about him, he’s Charley Mills. Greats like Jean Riaud or Jean-René Gougeon were inspired by him at the time, even Roger Baudron and Georges Dreux. He must have been an extraordinary man. Going back to my time, I’m keeping Pierre Allaire. He was good at everything. And Jean Pierre Dubois. It’s so great what he’s doing… I’ll stop here, it’s not easy (laughs)!

Your first win in Group 1?

It was with Jalys du Roncey, in 1978. I won the Critérium des Jeunes as a trainer and driver. I beat Léopold Verroken in wrestling.

Group 1 that you didn’t expect?

oh trump at the Prix de Cornulier. He was often the favourite, but things went badly. A year before his victory I had said to his owner: “We won’t give him a saddle again until the next issue. » The horse was harnessed better and also finished at the Prix d’Amérique. He had had some tough fights on horseback. Surprisingly he won. I had done the same with the Prix de Normandie Master Trump. It smiled at us.

A Group 1 win where you were “confident of winning”?

The Cornulier Prize of Queen of Corta. In 1989 I had missed my shot. I had the balls… At that moment she, who never had anything, was plagued by an ankle problem. She was second but Michel (Lenoir) couldn’t let go of her. 90, before the Prix de Cornulier, it had not experienced defeat. We arrived wondering how we were going to lose him this time. We were under enormous pressure. Having a mare like that without winning this tournament was not normal. When I was 5 years old I didn’t want to direct it because I was presenting Prince Trump, who finished second. But the mare was obviously a different class.

It’s definitely a race that shaped you, and it’s not just any race…

Absolutely. I was lucky enough to win a total of five. With dream with Me, when we won his two cornulier, he wasn’t the first favorite every time. He got everyone to agree, like the strong one ridden by my son François. Those were good times. And I won one as a breeder owner dealer. I thought I wouldn’t win it again but thanks to Philippe (Allaire) it wasn’t over in the end. The horse broke the race record.

dream with Metwice winner of the Prix de Cornulier under the saddle of François Roussel

#retro #Alain #Roussel

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