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Photo by Pascal Bernardon on Unsplash
Photo by Pascal Bernardon on Unsplash

Chantilly racecourse to the north of Paris, France, is the home of some of Europe’s most prestigious horse racing events, including the Prix de Diane, which will make its return this summer. Between its world-class participants and stunning backdrops, the Prix de Diane is considered a French Classic. It is even sometimes referred to as the French Oaks, a nod to the famous Oaks race in England that is run at Epsom Downs.

The History of Prix de Diane

Established in 1843, the Prix de Diane is a Group 1 flat horse race that is run over a distance of 2,100 meters, and it is open to three-year-old thoroughbred fillies. The famous race is named after the Roman and Hellenistic mythological goddess Diana, or, in French, Diane, who is considered a patroness of hunters, crossroads, countryside, and the Moon. The race moved to Versailles in 1848, followed by Longchamp racecourse in Paris, before returning to its true home in Chantilly. This year's event will take place on Sunday, June 20.

What Can We Expect This Year?

Horse racing has long been a spectator sport, meaning many are placing wagers, in addition to admiring the abilities of the horses and jockeys. Ahead of this year’s Prix de Diane, bettors are watching three-year-old Philomene, who, with horse racing odds of 7/2, is one of the favorites to win. Philomene has an expected probability to win the event of 22.22%, and while she has the lowest odds, Mother Earth follows her with odds of 5/1.

Famous Past Participants

Over the years, the Prix de Diane has had world-class horses participate in its race, adding to the reputation and overall attraction of the event. That said, not much else was needed to convince spectators to attend this event, thanks to its stunning backdrop of an 18th-century architectural masterpiece called the Great Stables, designed by architect Jean Aubert. Several horses that won the event have also gone on to win other famous competitions, including the English Oaks and the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe.

In 1976, Pawneese dominated the Epsom Oaks race in England, winning by five lengths. The same year, she ruled the Prix de Diane, where she won by eleven and a half lengths. Most recently, in 2013, we saw thoroughbred Treve go unbeaten in four races, including the Prix de Diane and the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe, one of the most prestigious all-aged horse races in Europe.

The Prix de Diane is not the only horse racing event that bettors will be placing wagers on this summer. June will feature several events, including the Coronation Cup at Epsom and races at the Royal Ascot, such as the Queen Anne Stakes and St James’s Palace Stakes, a Group 1 flat race. Still, spectators and bettors should keep an eye on the Prix de Diane at the end of the month, not just to see if Philomene takes home the title, but because the race has beautiful history and scenery.

You can find more interesting articles in our section on Horse Racing.

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