The entries for the Qatar Arc Trials, run on Sunday, September 15 at ParisLongchamp, were received Wednesday morning at France Galop.
The main challengers expected for this dress rehearsal are in the Qatar Prix Vermeille (Gr1), Foy (Gr2) and Niel (Gr2).
The three events are raced on the same course and distance as the Arc, the 1m4f of the Grande Piste (main course).
The “Vermeille” is a Group 1 for females aged 3 and up. There are 19 three-year-old fillies facing six elders, the latter led by Magical (Galileo). She tried her luck against the champion mare Enable in the Yorkshire Oaks (Gr1) lately, on this very distance at York, on August 22. Another mare trained by Aidan O’Brien, Magical Wand (Galileo), second in this race last year behind Kitesurf, is also entered.
The winners of the four French, English, Irish and German fillies’ classics, namely Channel(Nathaniel), Anapurna (Frankel), Star Catcher (Sea the Stars) and Diamanta (Maxios) lead the 3-year-old fillies defence.
The Qatar Prix Niel (Gr2) is another classic parade restricted to 3-year-old colts. Nineteen entries have been received including the most expected one, that of Sottsass (Siyouni), who will discover his first 1m1/2 trip for his return, more than three months after his success in the QIPCO Prix du Jockey Club (Gr1). He goes along with Slalom (Intello), second in the Juddmonte Grand Prix de Paris (Gr1) won by Japan, who has since confirmed at York in the Juddmonte International Stakes (Gr1), and Anthony van Dyck (Galileo), a winner of the Epsom Derby looking for a new lease of life. There is also the impressive Logician(Frankel), but the winner of the Great Voltigeur Stakes (Gr2) last week at York will rather go the previous Saturday, September 14 to Doncaster try his luck in the St.Leger (Gr1).
The Qatar Prix Foy (Gr2) is only open to aged horses, regardless of sex. Fourteen of them are entered, including French hope Waldgeist (Galileo), fourth in the 2018 Arc after winning the same race and so promising when third to Enable in the King George Stakes (Gr1) of Ascot on a ground he didn’t like. The Japanese raider Kiseki (Rulership) starts for the first time in France in this Prix Foy. He’s a Japanese St.Leger winner, often placed at the best level in his native country. The stayer Way to Paris (Champs Elysees) comes back over the classic distance after having succeeded on longer trips.
Two other Group races are scheduled for this promising Sunday, the Qatar Prix du Petit Couvert (Gr3) over a 5 furlongs dash leading to the Prix de l’Abbaye de Longchamp Longines (Gr1) and the Qatar Prix du Pin (Gr3) over 7 furlongs, the trip of the Qatar Prix de la Forêt (Gr1) on Arc day.