Enable in a class of her own
Filly gives jockey and owner fifth Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe success
Jockey Frankie Dettori won a record fifth Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe as 10-11 favourite Enable stormed to victory at Chantilly, France, on Sunday.
The three-year-old John Gosden-trained filly got off to a fast start and was perfectly placed when Dettori unleashed her in the home straight to easily beat Cloth of Stars (25-1) by two-and-a-half lengths.
The Sir Michael Stout-trained Ulysses (9-1) finished third in the 5-million-euro (S$8 million) Group 1, 2,400m European showpiece.
"She was 'magnifique'," Italian Dettori said. "A truly tremendous finish.
"I had position 'A', I knew I had no weight and she stays, so I kicked and she gave me four lengths and the race was over. I love her and John is a genius."
It was also a fifth Arc win for Enable's owner, Prince Khalid Abdullah, into whose arms Dettori leapt with his trademark dismount back in the paddock.
Trainer Gosden said that Dettori had done brilliantly to get Enable, who has been racing for only 10 months, into a winning position.
"It was a very clever ride by Frankie," said Gosden. "Coming round the corner he manoeuvred her onto the outside and, with that one manoeuvre, and not get pinned to the rails, he was able to offer her a position from where she could win."
Idaho and Order Of St George led the way coming into the straight in a packed field of 18 runners, five of whom were trained by master Irish trainer Aidan O'Brien.
The first England or Ireland-trained three-year-old filly to win the race, Enable produced a spectacular burst of speed once around the final turn, cruising five lengths clear before easing off at the line.
Cloth Of Stars ran an exceptional race in second for Andre Fabre, while Ulysses travelled well, having tracked Enable from a good position under jockey Jim Crowley.
Asked if Enable would continue, Gosden said trying to win at the Arc's traditional home of Longchamp next year would be a mouthwatering prospect.
"It's Prince Khalid's decision, but look, she hasn't raced a lot in that she first raced last November and it would be exciting to try and win the Arc on two different tracks (back at Longchamp) next year," he said.
Enable took impressive top-level wins in the Epsom Oaks, the Irish Oaks, the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes, as well as the Yorkshire Oaks, before ending an astonishing season at Chantilly.
For Dettori, it was a fifth win, 18 years after the his Arc love affair began with Lammtarra. Sakhee and Marienbard followed in 2001 and 2002, with Golden Horn supplying his fourth win in 2015. - AFP