Matt Chapman | Longchamp & Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe preview
This time last year I was heading to Paris in dreadful conditions, but of course it was a real treat to be there and it was a massive day of broadcasting on Attheraces.
Alas, I won’t be there for this weekend’s action, but ATR will show you each and every race and it’s going to be massive, with possibly the hottest Arc de Triomphe since the great race of 1986 when Dancing Brave came out on top.
Let’s concentrate on Sunday, and it’s time to smash Paddy Power up once again. You hear me, Paddy? (Dream on, pal – Paddy.)
Let’s go straight to the big one – and I’m having two against the field.
[infographic: Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe betting history and guide – click to enlarge]
The last time Criquette Head won the Arc was 34 years ago with Three Troikas, and that horse was drawn in stall 23, so before everyone tells you it’s impossible to win from a high draw, think again. That said, of course it is harder.
My each-way bets
Of the low numbers, I can’t not have an each-way bet on the Derby hero Ruler of the World, not so much due to his Epsom win, but because his run against Kizuna in the Prix Niel suggests he is right up there with the best.
If Ruler of the World had not run so badly in the Irish Derby, he would be half the price he is, and I am quite happy to forgive him one bad effort. He should have won the Niel, and off a strong gallop on testing ground he will be bang there.
Treve is in stall 15, but I have to back her as well, as she could just be one of the greats. Unbeaten in four runs and brilliant in the Diane and Vermeille, she stays and has a turn of foot. She may drift in price too – come on, Paddy, push her out!
Sole Power will hate the ground
Orfevre is the one to beat, but I can’t back him after last year’s defeat. He should have won in 2012, and may well go one better. But at the prices we can leave him alone.
The Abbaye in on ATR – NOT Channel 4 – so stay with us! Paddy has Sole Power in there, but we know he will hate the ground. That said, he is the class act off 118 as I am not sure Jwala is worth her rating of 119. Sole Power could well run a big one.
However, take a chance here on Ballesteros at a massive price. He ran OK against Maarek last time, but look back to 2012 and he finished fourth in the Abbaye from a similar draw. This could just be his race.
In the Marcel Boussac I will be backing Sandiva, who looked good in the Calvados last time and is likely to stay 1m. A class act and there is no Andre Fabre inmate to worry about.
Conditions will be perfect for Karakontie in the Lagardere, while the Prix de l’Opera gives Tasaday a great chance to get back to winning ways. She ran a big one in both the Diane and Vermeille behind Treve.