Enable Storms Home to Take Arc
From Bob Kieckhefer (Bloodhorse.com)
First British filly to take storied race.
Enable (GB) swept to the easiest of victories in the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe (G1) at Chantilly Oct. 1, as she brushed aside a top-quality field to post her fifth straight win at the highest level. In doing so, she became the first British filly to win the race since its inception in 1920.
Enable raced in perfect position into the straight, hit overdrive when given her cue, and was a clear winner with 200 meters to run, as Frankie Dettori picked up his record fifth Arc-winning ride.
“I asked, she gave me four lengths, and the race was over,” Dettori said after his traditional flying dismount. The final winning margin was 2 1/2 lengths.
Cloth of Stars, who finished second in the Qatar Prix Foy (G2), found late run to take second for Godolphin. Ulysses, winner of the Juddmonte International (G1), finished third in a likely prep for the Longines Breeders’ Cup Turf (G1T) at Del Mar.
Last year’s third-place Arc finisher, Order of St George, finished fourth in this renewal—the best showing of trainer Aidan O’Brien’s five starters—and Brametot, winner of the QIPCO Prix du Jockey Club (G1) came in fifth. German-trained Dschingis Secret and Iquitos were after those. The Japanese hopes, Satono Diamond and Satono Noblesse, finished 15th and 16th, respectively, in the 18-horse field.
Enable is a 3-year-old Juddmonte Farms homebred daughter of Nathaniel out of the Sadler’s Wells mare Concentric (GB). She came to Chantilly after consecutive group 1 wins in the the Darley Yorkshire Oaks at York, the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth against older males at Ascot, the Darley Irish Oaks at the Curragh,and the Investec Oaks at Epsom.
It was widely assumed Enable would be retired after the Arc, with nothing left to prove. But immediately after the race trainer John Gosden held out hope for more.
“I think it would be wrong to run her again this year,” he said, ruling out a Breeders’ Cup visit. “But if she’s in great form, you should consider her again for next year.”
“Please!” said Dettori, who presumably would ride Enable in his 30th Arc try at the rebuilt Longchamp facility in 2018. “She’s a superstar. She won like I expected.”
Gosden said Enable “is special. She was very well positioned by Frankie to show her brilliance and ability.”
Gosden supplemented Enable to the Arc, as her breakthrough victory in the Arkle Finance Cheshire Oaks at York came the day after Arc entries closed. After that victory, her run of successes quickly made her a favorite for Europe’s most prestigious race.