ANY notion that the best three-year-old milers might not be all they were cracked up to be was answered categorically in the Group 1 Prix Jacques le Marois at Deauville last Sunday, when the St James’s Palace Stakes winner Palace Pier beat the Coronation Stakes winner Alpine Star, the pair well clear of a quartet of older horses (and one long-shot three-year-old).

This race was run in contrasting style to the steadily run St James’s Palace, in which Palace Pier had shown a remarkable turn of foot, and he actually struggled a bit before the leaders started to pay for going so hard mid-race.