GB: Champion trainer John Gosden has delivered an update on Enable, Stradivarius, Logician, Palace Pier, Mishriff and other stable stars during the first virtual Henry Cecil Open Weekend taking place this weekend.
“Enable is very happy and well. She has been fine since the race at Kempton, the Unibet September Stakes. She enjoyed that outing. It’s [the Arc] a massive task, a big mountain to climb again. If it had gone quite right last year, she obviously wouldn’t be trying to do it this year.
It looks a fantastic race, Aidan O’Brien is fielding a wonderful filly in Love, who naturally being a three-year-old gets all the weight, which Enable benefited from when she won as a three year old, and there are some great older horses.
“It is very exciting. At the moment it will be fast ground, we will see what the weather does, she would like to get her toe in a little bit. She is in great form to attempt the impossible. Frankie will hopefully be here next week to ride her in some work and help bring her up to the race.”
“In the Prix Foy, Mickael Barzalona was riding Anthony Van Dyck and he went nice gentle fractions. In the French trials they do not like to overdo them, they come into the straight and then kick. I thought for a two-and-a-half-mile Ascot Gold Cup winner he showed great acceleration down the straight. The other horses behind never got to them. I thought both horses ran lovely races and he came up a neck short. I could not have been happier with him.”
“We are very much looking at the QEII on QIPCO British Champions Day. We were very happy with the Jacques le Marois. We wanted that straight mile for him. They did have an excessive amount of rain, so it was very soft, but he handled it well. The form then got franked strongly in the Prix du Moulin. It was always the plan to go to the QEII and we will stick with it. He is certainly giving us all the right signs at the moment.
“There is a strong possibility that he stays in training as a four-year-old, in which case it will probably be his last run of the season as we are getting deep into October. I didn’t really want to be whizzing him off to Hong Kong or America at this stage, maybe we will do that sort of thing next year. Hopefully he runs a big race in the QEII, and we will be waiting to run him again as a four-year-old.”
“He had peritonitis, which is the most desperate thing – the Newmarket Equine Hospital saved his life. He came back – it was a two-horse conditions race, but what a lovely way to come back at Doncaster, where he had won the St Leger the year before. He took the race well.
“I don’t think we will try and do anything too flash this autumn. I think if we stay sensible, something like the Group 3 Cumberland Lodge Stakes at Ascot. Try and nurse him back up the ladder a little bit, then hope that he will be in good order for next year.”
“We thought about the Arc. We looked at the pedigree and to me, he is not fully furnished and strengthened yet. He is still improving and the Arc at this stage of his career could do more harm than good.
We decided we will stay at a mile and a quarter and he will be going to the Champion Stakes on QIPCO British Champions Day at Ascot. I’d expect him to put up a pretty big show.”
The full interview, with further updates on Lord North and Nazeef, is available at Henry Cecil Open Weekend website.