Ready And Able

Enable is reported to be none the worse for her exertions at Kempton on Saturday.

Having been on the sidelines for most of the year, the John Gosden-trained four-year-old made her first start since landing last year's Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe at Chantilly and duly won the four-runner Group Three September Stakes with relative ease.


The popular filly, who also won the English, Irish and Yorkshire Oaks last season, as well as the King George, is now a 7/4 chance with us here at 888sport to successfully defend her Arc crown at ParisLongchamp.

Sea of Class❓
Lah Ti Dar❓
Poets Word❓
Crystal Ocean❓

This year's Prix De l'Arc de Triomphe could be some affair. 🔥

— 888sport (@888sport) September 9, 2018

Teddy Grimthorpe, racing manager to owner Khalid Abdullah, said on Sunday: "She is good this morning and there are no problems.

"She was in very good form going into the race and we always hoped she would produce a good performance.

"The way she did it was very pleasing. I think everything about it was good and I don't think you could have asked for any more in how the race worked out.

"She good into a good rhythm, and although she was a little bit fresh, she settled really well, and she quickened well when asked. The runner-up (Crystal Ocean) is a very solid horse.

"The Arc is a huge race and she will have to bring her A-game, but that was a very good start to her year, if a somewhat belated one.

"It was great to see her do what she did at Kempton."

Her trainer John Gosden said: "She found a beautiful rhythm. It was a lovely trial back for the big one in four weeks' time. I couldn't be more happy with the way it's gone, absolutely delighted.

"She's 80-85 per cent fit today, the race will bring her on. It's all down to the filly, a great performance.

"She's very strong, just so determined. The hardest thing for her was standing around doing nothing, she just loves racing."

Her jockey, Frankie Dettori was also impressed: "That was awesome. I wasn't sure how fit she was as she's only being going a mile at home, but then she's trained by a master trainer. She got the job done and felt as good as ever. Bring on the Arc!"

David Probert, who rode Crystal Ocean on Saturday, said: "I was happy enough down the back, but with the 5lb penalty it was hard to serve it up to Enable properly in the straight."

He added: "He handled the surface well and if Sir Michael wants to take him to the Arc he's run a nice prep, make no mistake."

Wait And Sea

Punters may just want to bide their time having an early wager on the William Haggas-trained Sea Of Class in the Arc after he revealed that the ground would be the determining factor as to whether or not she will be supplemented for the race.

The Irish and Yorkshire Oaks winner is a 5/1 chance for the French showpiece, but connections will have part with 120,000 euros to add her to the field four days before the actual race.

Haggas is keen to run her if conditions are favourable, but would have no hesitation in abandoning those plans should the ground be against her.

Speaking recently, Haggas said: “I don’t think she’ll run before the Arc, she’s in the Prix Vermeille (September 16) but I don’t fancy that.

“I think there’s every likelihood that if she’s OK, she’ll be supplemented for the Arc, but I’m very concerned about the ground. I can’t believe it’s still dry and it’s not going to stay dry for long I’m sure.

“If the ground is good or faster on Arc day and she’s OK, then she’ll be there.

“Very few horses are very effective on fast and soft ground. I suspect she won’t like it (soft ground), her action suggests she flicks off the top of the ground.

“There’s every chance now we’re going to keep her as a four-year-old so if it’s soft, it’s a lot of money to supplement and we can go next year.”


Leger Doubt

Whilst all the focus has been on Enable in the last few days, it is all too easy to forget that John Gosden also trains another exciting Arc prospect in the shape of Lah Ti Dar.

After the three-year-old filly comprehensively demolished the field in the Galtres Stakes at York, it was assumed by many that her next port of call would be the St Leger at Doncaster.

But Simon Marsh, racing manager to her owners Lord and Lady Lloyd-Webber, revealed the filly was far from certain to run in Yorkshire and may head to Longchamp that weekend for the traditional Arc warm-up, the Prix Vermeille.

Marsh said: "Lah Ti Dar has come out of the race very well and is absolutely fine, but while she'll be left in both the Leger and the Vermeille we're leaning towards the Vermeille. If we were to go for the Vermeille, we would then look at running her in the Arc."

The unbeaten Lah Ti Dah is currently priced up at 8/1 with us here at 888sport for the Arc.

Triple Handed

John Gosden could well end up saddling a trio of runners in the Arc on October 7th as Cracksman still remains on course for a tilt at the race providing the weather comes up trumps for him.

“He is great form but he does need plenty of rain,” trainer Gosden said “I don’t want to run him in the Arc unless it is good ground, at least.”

The Anthony Oppenheimer owned four-year-old has put in all his best performances on rain-softened ground.

In fact Cracksman is actually undefeated in all his three starts on soft ground including his seven-length demolition of Poet’s Word in the Champion Stakes last October.

Current Prix De L'Arc De Triomphe Odds:

  • Enable (7/4)
  • Sea Of Class (5/1)
  • Cracksman (7/1)
  • Lah Ti Dar (8/1)
  • Crystal Ocean (12/1)
  • Poet's Word (12/1)
  • Roaring Lion (14/1)


*Odds subject to change - correct at time of writing*

About the Author
Steve Mullington

Steven is a sports and horseracing enthusiast and is a member of the Horseracing Writers and Photographers Association (HWPA) in the United Kingdom.

He is a regular visitor to Paris Longchamp for the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe and a lifelong fan of the Aintree Grand National, a subject he writes about 52 weeks of the year. Last year he reached the impressive milestone of attending the last 25 renewals of the Grand National. 

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