ANTE-POST favourites Tarnawa and Adayar head 15 declarations for Sunday’s Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe – Europe’s blue riband Flat race – at ParisLongchamp.
The pair have been battling it out at the top of the market all week, with Charlie Appleby’s Derby and King George hero Adayar supplemented for the race on Wednesday at a cost of 120,000 euros.
The Dermot Weld-trained Tarnawa, winner of last year’s Breeders’ Cup Turf, has long been towards the head of the market and she will team up with Christophe Soumillon for the first time this season on Sunday.
The pair had contrasting fortunes in the draw with Tarnawa faring better in stall three and Adayar out wide in stall 11.
Appleby’s Irish Derby and St Leger hero Hurricane Lane, given stall two, is another key player along with the Aidan O’Brien-trained Snowfall, winner of the English and Irish Oaks. She will start from gate nine.
O’Brien also runs Broome (stall seven) and last year’s star filly Love (four), with William Haggas’s Alenquer (eight) and the Richard Hannon-trained Mojo Star (one) completing the British and Irish challenge.
Teona was the only withdrawal at the final declaration stage, with Japan double-handed via Chrono Genesis (14) and Deep Bond (five) while Raabihah (15) leads the home defence.
In other news, Oisin Murphy expects to be fit to ride Chrono Genesis in the Arc after escaping serious injury in a nasty incident yesterday.
The dual champion jockey was set to partner newcomer Oasis Gift in the opening event at Salisbury when the juvenile took off across the paddock after Murphy got the leg-up, before jinking near to the parade ring exit and dislodging his partner.
The rider hit the plastic railing at the edge of the paddock and while he was able to walk into an ambulance, he gave up his remaining mounts and went to hospital for a thorough check-up. While he needed stitches in a split lip, Murphy said: “All is good. I’ll be back tomorrow at Ascot, the championship is important to me.”
Murphy is chasing a third straight title, but William Buick is hot on his tail.
Meanwhile, Ivan Furtado has warned his stable star Just Beautiful could bypass the Kingdom Of Bahrain Sun Chariot Stakes if the ground was soft at Newmarket tomorrow.
The three-year-old filly has already given the Brazilian-born trainer the two biggest successes of his career so far, in a Listed race at Musselburgh and the Group Three Sceptre Stakes at Doncaster.
However, with showers around, conditions might not be ideal for the daughter of Pride Of Dubai.
“She’s in great form. She came out of Doncaster really well and she’s ready to run.
“We’ll just keep an eye on the weather. We just don’t want ‘soft’ in the ground description,” said Furtado. “If there is she probably wouldn’t run, but I would still have to discuss it with the owners.
“She’s a good to firm ground filly really, but I think we’d get away with nice, good ground. It will be a tough race against the top horses, but she didn’t disgrace herself in the Falmouth. If all goes well she should be thereabouts. She’s done nothing wrong and has been unbelievable for us.”