#ParisLongchamp #horseracing #france
On Sunday at ParisLongchamp, the Qatar Arc Trials will take place. Three races, two Group 1s and a Group 2, to prepare for the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, the Thoroughbred World Championship which will take place on the 4th October. Three weeks until this huge event, now it’s time to find out who is ready to take part in the greatest race in the world!
- The Qatar Prix Vermeille, a Group 1 for 3-year-old and older fillies, has attracted 10 runners. The 3-year-old filly Raabihah, who is trained at Deauville by Jean-Claude Rouget, is looking to confirm on her brilliant win in the Prix de Psyché, in August at Deauville, against an international field. She is not alone in the race…
- The Juddmonte Grand Prix de Paris, Group 1 for 3-year-olds, usually takes place on the 14th July. The Covid-19 pandemic caused the date to be changed and it now replaces the Qatar Prix Niel, the prep race for the « Classic » generation (the 3-year-olds). Jean-Claude Rouget once again well-armed in this race with Port Guillaume, who will be taking on two Derby winners: Serpentine, winner of the Epsom Derby, and the French-bred In Swoop, who won the German Derby.
- The big attraction of the Qatar Prix Foy will be Stradivarius, the king of the stayers (long-distance horses- who run over further than 2400 meters). He will be shortening up to run over 2400 meters this Sunday.
The Qatar Prix Vermeille carries a Group 1 label, the highest status of a race worldwide. This means that the Qatar Prix Vermeille is both a stepping stone to the big event and an objective in itself.
The five most recent winners of the Vermeille & Arc double
1979 Three Troïkas
1972 San San
The seven most recent winners of the Qatar Prix Vermeille and their Arc result
Year Vermeille winner Arc result
2019 Star Catcher Did not run
2018 Kitesurf Did not run
2017 Bateel Did not run
2016 Left Hand 12th
2015 Trêve 4th
2014 Baltic Baroness Did not run
2013 Trêve 1st
2012 Shareta 9th
We will see a showdown between the 3-year-old generation and their elders, and also between the French and foreign runners as there is nearly a 50/50 split of the runners: five French fillies against five raiders coming from across the Channel (England & Ireland). The French-trained Raabihah is a strong pretender and will be taking on Even So, who won the Irish Oaks. The 4-year-old filly, Dame Malliot, is the most decorated performer amongst the older fillies, and she will be attempting to emulate Star Catcher, winner of this race last year for the same silks – those of Anthony Oppenheimer – and with the help of the same jockey, the celebrated Lanfranco Dettori.
The Juddmonte Grand Prix de Paris has been transplanted to the Qatar Arc Trials race day from its traditional date of the 14th July. It replaces the Qatar Prix Niel, the traditional prep for 3-year-old colts aiming for the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe.
This race is a Group 1, and so, like the Qatar Prix Vermeille, is an objective in itself. The winning horse will receive a free entry into the world’s best race if he is not already entered… This is the case for the Irish runner Serpentine, the surprise winner of the Epsom Derby for the superpower Coolmore.
The winners of the Juddmonte Grand Prix de Paris & Arc double since 1990
2006 Rail Link
1997 Peintre Célèbre
The seven most recent winners of the Juddmonte Grand Prix de Paris and their Arc result
Year Winner Arc result
2019 Japan 4th
2018 Kew Gardens 7th
2017 Shakeel Did not run
2016 Mont Ormel Did not run
2015 Erupt 5th
2014 Gallante Did not run
2013 Flintshire 8th
Irish trainer Aidan O’Brien is currently the dual titleholder of this race, and he is fielding three runners in his attempt to land the prize for the third consecutive year. Serpentine, who will be ridden by crack jockey Christophe Soumillon, won the Epsom Derby, Great Britain’s best race for 3-year-old colts. He wasn’t the stable favourite for the race, and pressure is on to prove that his performance that day was no fluke. The pressure is on: the colt is not entered in the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, and if his connections wish to avoid a costly supplementary fee, there is only one option: winning on Sunday! France will be defended by Port Guillaume, fifth in the Prix du Jockey Club (the French equivalent of the Epsom Derby), and recent winner of the Prix Hocquart Longines.
The Qatar Prix Foy, labelled Group 2, is the traditional prep for horses of the age of 4 and older for the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe. The “Foy-Arc” double was realised just last year by Waldgeist, now a sire. This race features 6 runners, with English runner Stradivarius the hot favourite.
Most recent Foy & Arc doubles
1974 Allez France
The seven most recent winners of the Prix Foy and their Arc result
Year Winner Prix Foy Arc result
2019 Waldgeist 1st
2018 Waldgeist 4th
2017 Dschingis Secret 6th
2016 Silverwave 13th
2015 Postponed Did not run
2014 Ruler of the World 9th
2013 Orfèvre 2nd
2012 Orfèvre 2nd
There is a big star in this race: the English Stradivarius. The horse, trained by John Gosden and ridden by Lanfranco Dettori (like a certain Enable, in search of a third title in the next Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe), won everything in the stayers’ division – horses specialized in long-distance races (over 2,400 meters). So much so that his connections have set a new challenge: to compete against the best horses over 2,400 meters, the Classic distance, that of the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe. The last time he ran this distance, on June 5, he finished third. But it was for his comeback and he has risen to power since, with two prestigious successes, in the Gold Cup and the Goodwood Cup. He will be the horse to beat.
POINT AND FORECAST FOR PARISLONGCHAMP ON SUNDAY
Matthieu Vincent, Director of racecourses and training centres at France Galop, explains:
“This week, two maintenance waterings were carried out: 7 mm on Sunday, September 6 and 8mm on Thursday, September 10. A control visit to the ParisLongchamp track will be carried out in the late afternoon this Friday and, if necessary, an extra watering can be done. The objective is to obtain GOOD ground, at a 3.2 penometric index, this Sunday, September 13 for the Qatar Arc Trials, with the expected sunshine (good weather), temperatures expected between 25 and 27 degrees with little wind announced.
The rail will be at zero. This ground has not been used since mid-July to preserve this strip of track for the big autumn events. »
Information for Saturday and Sunday:
– Weather: sunny
– Temperature: 26°C
– Wind: North 5 to 10 km/h
– Mowing to 10.50 cm this Friday.
– Sunday the rail will be at 0
The goal for Sunday: Ground GOOD (3.2) at the start of the meeting.