Daily Mail

Enable may miss York to aid Arc shot


JOhn GOSDEn is likely to decide this week whether Enable will run at York next month or go direct to Longchamp in October in a bid to become the first threetime winner of the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe.

Running at the Knavesmire in either the Yorkshire Oaks or the Internatio­nal Stakes had been the original plan for the mare.

But after Saturday’s dramatic defeat of Crystal Ocean in the King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot — a tussle Gosden described as ‘epic’ — he could hand Enable, who won the Eclipse Stakes on her seasonal comeback, a break before the most important race of her season in Paris.

Gosden said: ‘I don’t think a hard race like that will leave a mark on her but we will monitor her over the next few days and we will see how we want to play it. She has now won an Eclipse Stakes and King George so we don’t have to go to York unless it is in her interests to do so.

‘Everyone knows she was kept in training to try to win a third Arc. That has never been done before and it has always been the focus of the whole season.

‘It is why we deliberate­ly did not start her off until July. It is just over three weeks to York so if it fits, it fits. But if we think it

is better to wait and freshen her and bring her back up for Longchamp then we will do that.

‘I need to be making a decision by the time we get through Goodwood. If you are going for York, you are going for York, but looking at Longchamp in the first week of October is a totally different programme.’

Gosden added that the fact Khalid Abdullah sponsors the Internatio­nal Stakes would have no bearing on decisions.

The trainer said: ‘It would be nice to (run in the Internatio­nal) but that would be the tail wagging the dog. We will not be influenced by that one little bit. Prince Khaled would want what is right for the filly and that is all he would care about.’

Saturday’s King George lived up to expectatio­ns and more. Enable’s titanic battle with the equally courageous Crystal Ocean justifiabl­y drew comparison­s with the 1975 King George when Derby winner Grundy beat Bustino. In both races, pacesetter­s set a frenetic early gallop before the heavyweigh­t contenders’ home-straight slugfest.

What might be at the back of Gosden’s mind when he considers his next move is that neither Grundy nor Bustino won another race after their Ascot dust- up, so allowing Enable to recharge her batteries might be wise.

Enable’s jockey Frankie Dettori certainly looked emotionall­y and physically drained on Saturday. his sixth King George success was his ninth Group One win of the season. Dettori needs one more to make 2019 his best season for top-level wins since 2007 when he won 11. Dettori has three more excellent Group One chances this week at Glorious Goodwood with Stravinsky in tomorrow’s Goodwood Cup, Too Darn hot in Wednesday’s Sussex Stakes and Mehdaayih in Thursday’s nassau Stakes. If they all go in there will be speculatio­n over whether the 48-year-old Italian can get near his tally of 16 Group One successes from 2001. Meanwhile, another great mare took centre stage when Laurens galloped her rivals into the ground in the Prix Rothschild at Deauville under jockey PJ McDonald. After two defeats this season, owner John Dance had apparently been questionin­g the wisdom of keeping four-year- old Laurens in training. But she now has six Group One wins on her record with the chances of more to come. nR OA R I n G Lion, who won four Group One races for Gosden, including the Internatio­nal Stakes, has had an emergency colic operation in new Zealand where he is carrying out stallion duties.

 ?? Pure gold: Dettori with his trophy REX REX ?? Epic clash: Enable (right) edges out Crystal Ocean to win Saturday’s King George
Pure gold: Dettori with his trophy REX REX Epic clash: Enable (right) edges out Crystal Ocean to win Saturday’s King George
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