Horse of the year En­able a ‘filly of rare distinc­tion’

Her­bert hails five-time Group One win­ner Gos­den and O’brien dom­i­nate Cartier Awards

The Daily Telegraph - Sport - - Racing - By Mar­cus Army­tage

En­able’s se­quence of five wins at the high­est level lit up the 2017 Flat sea­son and she was de­servedly crowned Horse of the Year at the 27th Cartier Rac­ing Awards Din­ner in London last night.

The filly, owned and bred by Khalid Ab­dul­lah’s Jud­dmonte Farms, was known only to her con­nec­tions 12 months ago, hav­ing not made her de­but un­til New­cas­tle at the end of Novem­ber.

But fol­low­ing a sea­son in which John Gos­den guided and Frankie Det­tori steered her to wins against her own age group and sex in the In­vestec Oaks, Dar­ley Ir­ish Oaks and York­shire Oaks – plus against colts and older horses in the King Ge­orge VI and Queen El­iz­a­beth Stakes and Prix de L’arc de Triom- phe – every­one was talk­ing about her last night when she was also named Cartier Three-year-old Filly.

Lord Grimthorpe, the owner’s rac­ing man­ager, Gos­den and Det­tori, who de­scribed her as the best filly he had ever rid­den, were all on hand at the Dorch­ester to re­ceive Euro­pean rac­ing’s high­est ac­co­lade from Lau­rent Fe­niou, man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of Cartier.

She was not the only horse trained by Gos­den and rid­den by Det­tori to be hon­oured. Cracks­man won the Great Voltigeur and Prix Niel by wide mar­gins be­fore putting up an as­ton­ish­ing dis­play to win the Qipco Cham­pion Stakes at As­cot by seven lengths.

Two years af­ter re­ceiv­ing the Three-year-old Colt award with Golden Horn, Cracks­man’s owner­breeder An­thony Op­pen­heimer was back re­ceiv­ing the same award for this colt.

Ai­dan O’brien matched Gos­den with three ‘Cartiers’ for Bal­ly­doyle horses. He cleaned up in the ju­ve­nile cat­e­gories with US Navy Flag, a rare win­ner of both the Shad­well Mid­dle Park and Dar­ley De­whurst, win­ning Two-year-old Colt. The Two-year-old Filly prize went to Hap­pily, while for the sec­ond year in a row Order of St Ge­orge was named Cartier Stayer.

Sir Michael Stoute, who was the re­cip­i­ent of the only hu­man hon­our, the Daily Tele­graph Award of Merit, also watched proudly as Maria Niar­chos and her niece Elec­tra were pre­sented with the Older Horse award for Ulysses, who Stoute trained to win the Co­rale­clipse and Jud­dmonte In­ter­na­tional and set the stan­dard.

There was a big cheer for Clive Cox and Adam Kirby when they went up with Hugh An­der­son, man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of Godol­phin, to re­ceive the award for Harry An­gel, whose vic­to­ries in the Dar­ley July Cup and 32Red Sprint Cup made him a wor­thy win­ner of the sea­son’s top sprinter.

“It has been an­other tremen­dous year in Euro­pean horserac­ing,” said Harry Her­bert, Cartier’s rac­ing con­sul­tant and joint-host of the evening with Fe­niou. “En­able’s five vic­to­ries at Group One level and her per­for­mances, at As­cot and Chan­tilly, mark her out as a filly of rare distinc­tion.”

Sim­ply the best: Khalid Ab­dul­lah’s En­able won two Cartier awards last night

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