Since 2012, owners Nicole Papot, that is to say Mrs. Patrick Papot, and Magalen Bryant are invariably found at the top of the French jumping rankings. For Mrs Papot, whose blue and green silks represent the whole family, it is a fifth consecutive title since her first one, in 2010, with record gains of €3.6m, while Magalen Bryant is second-best owner in France for the sixth time, having twice led the rankings in 2003 and 2004.
The gap in earnings between the two teams at the end of the year is usually around € 700,000, even though in 2015 and 2016 their tally increased sharply from about 2 to 3 million each, a testimony not only to their domination but also to the emulation that this sporting rivalry creates.
The size of their stables doesn't reflect such a steep rise, with approximately one hundred horses running per year for Nicole Papot and 70 to 80 for her American rival.
Another similarity is that both stables have horses in training with many trainers. Seventeen of them are currently taking care of Mrs Bryant's jumpers, and ten train the horses for the Papots.
However, the blue and red jacket of the American owner, who herself rode over timbers in the United States, won again the Grand Steeple-Chase de Paris (Gr1) and the Prix La Haye Jousselin (Gr1), the two French "Gold Cups". In 2015, Milord Thomas had won both. He finished fourth this summer of the "Grand Steeple" behind his stablemate So French.