IT WAS a disappointing night for the three Irish raiders at ParisLongchamp on Thursday as Dermot Weld’s Search For A Song dropped away tamely to finish seventh of nine in the Group 2 Prix Vicomtesse Vigier and Raadobarg and Baradar, two Johnny Murtagh-trained four-year-olds in the purple Amo Racing colours, finished eighth and 11th of the 13 runners in the Listed Prix de Montretout.

Sent off as a well fancied 3.7/1 third favourite in a field of nine for the mile and seven and a half furlongs Vigier, Search For A Song travelled smoothly in second place and everything seemed to be going well when she drew alongside the leader with three furlongs to run.

Her supporters knew their fate soon afterwards, however, as she struggled to overhaul the front-running outsider, Sea Dreamin, and Chris Hayes was quick to accept defeat on the six-year-old dual Irish St Leger-winning mare, whose future career on the track must be in some doubt following back-to-back disappointments, first in England and now in France.

Gold Cup

By contrast, Skazino, the other six-year-old in the line-up, could have put himself in line for a crack at the Gold Cup at Ascot having successfully defended his Vigier crown.

Now trained by Richard Chotard after former handler Cedric Rossi was caught up in last December’s doping investigations, the Kendargent gelding benefited from a rail-hugging ride from Mickael Barzalona to score by half a length.

The evening’s second Group 2 contest, the five-runner mile and three furlong Prix Hocquart for three-year-olds, looked a weak affair beforehand but did at least serve up a thrilling finish as the Francis Graffard-trained Frankel colt L’Astronome justified odds-on favourtism when getting the better of a final furlong duel with the provincially-trained outsider Galaxie Gold by a head.

The first two are likely to face off again in seven weeks’ time over the extra furlong of the Group 1 Grand Prix de Paris.