The hopes of Enable’s connections as they look to make history by winning a third consecutive Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe title on Sunday were given a timely boost with the news that four of her competitors have been withdrawn from the reckoning.
Chief among the absentees will be Mehdaayih, who represented another of John Gosden’s chances in the Longchamp showpiece, and leaves Enable battling a 12-strong field ahead of the final supplementary stage on Wednesday.
If the field remains as the dozen mark, it will be the smallest Arc field in over a decade – when Dylan Thomas produced another winner of this race for the Irish back in 2007.
Also missing will be Silverwave, Matchwinner and Musis Amica, although it is the absence of Mehdaayih, who finished second in the Nassau Stakes at Goodwood, that is likely to have most impact upon the fantastic filly’s chances.
Indeed, the betting market has already moved in the wake of the field changes and in the midst of the weather, which has seen Longchamp blasted by the kind of heavy rain that has blanketed much of the UK this week too.
Enable has been squeezed into 8/11, with Japan also shortening to 5/1. The biggest market mover has been Ghaiyyath, who was so impressive in cantering to victory in the Grosser Preis von Baden last time out. Charlie Appleby’s colt offers the Godolphin yard their best chance of victory on French soil.
|Blast Onepiece||Masahiro Otake||25/1|
|Anthony Van Dyck||Aidan O’Brien||33/1|
|French King||H-A Pantall||50/1|
|Nagano Gold||Vaclav Luka Jr||50/1|
Frankie Eyes Another Magnificent Seven
As we know, Enable’s feat of winning a third consecutive Arc would be a slice of racing history: that has never been achieve before, nor is it likely to be matched in the future.
Indeed, the only horse to have even attempted the treble in the €5 million battle is Treve, and her hopes were ended, ironically enough, by Frankie Dettori aboard Gosden’s horse Golden Horn.
If Enable can win on Sunday then she would also deliver Dettori’s seventh Arc triumph; confirming him as the most successful jockey in the race’s history and suggesting that seven really is his lucky number following those unforgettable exploits at Ascot all those years ago.
Even with the absentees listed above, Enable will still have to work very hard to change the face of the history books while banking the €2.8 million top prize for the Juddmonte network.
Top of the list of contenders will be Japan, who won the Juddmonte sponsored International Stakes earlier in the season ahead of the outstanding Crystal Ocean.
Others, including Ghaiyyath, Derby champion Anthony Van Dyck and Irish Champion Stakes winner Magical are all very much in the hunt, as well could be Waldgeist, who has run well in the Arc before and who remains a very clear danger.
But Enable has shown plenty of heart and courage before, not to mention no little speed or class, as she has swept all before her, not just in the Arc but domestically too. Anyone who saw her triumph in the King George earlier in the campaign knows that this is not a horse that will go quietly.