On Wednesday, May 14, France Galop announced the initial entries for the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe 2019 (Gr1), which will be held on Sunday 6 October at Paris, Longchamp. Eighty-one horses have been entered in the race, which was, for the third time in four years, elected best race in the world in 2018. This year, it should once again be a great show, given the names of the leading horses entered.
ENABLE for a first-time ever triple win
Enable will try to make history in this Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe. Trained by John Gosden and defending the colours of Prince Khalid Abdullah, she is the double title holder, having won the race in 2017 and last year. The five-year-old mare will try to be the first horse to write her name for a third time on the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe roll of honour. The last horse to have attempted that challenge was the champion mare Trêve. Having won the coveted title in 2013 and 2014, she could only finish fourth in 2015.
SEA OF CLASS, like her sire and her grand-dam
Last year, at three years old, Sea of Class finished second in the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe. While she was defeated, the William Haggas-trained filly produced a strong finishing effort as she passed the whole field to fail by only a short head behind Enable. Since that day, all racing fans have been waiting for a second clash between Enable and Sea of Class in the world’s biggest race. Sea of Class carries the Sunderland Holdings silks.
Sea the Stars, sire of Sea of Class, won the title in 2009 and Urban Sea, dam of Sea the Stars, did the same in 1993. No doubt, Sea of Class will do her best to follow the examples of her sire and her grand-dam.
WALDGEIST wants his revenge!
Trained in France by André Fabre, Waldgeist impressed on his return in the 2,100m Prix Ganay (Gr1) on April 28 at Paris, Longchamp. Waldgeist came fourth in the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe in 2018. At five years old, the Gestut Ammerland & Newsells Park-owned Waldgeist looks stronger than ever and will be seeking revenge when facing both Enable and Sea of Class again.
PERSIAN KING, the best “young” horse
Persian King was, in 2018, the best 2yo trained in France. He has confirmed himself in 2019 and is currently the best 3yo trained in France, having just won the Poule d’Essai des Poulains (Gr1) on May 12, 2019 at Paris Longchamp. Persian King is trained at Chantilly by André Fabre and defends the colours of Godolphin and Ballymore Thoroughbred (Diane Wildenstein).
SATURNALIA, for the honour of Japan
Saturnalia is one of the seven Japanese horses entered in the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe 2019. The Japanese have not won the race yet and in 2019, their main hope could well be a 3yo colt called Saturnalia. He still has a long way to go before he participates in the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe. To win his ticket for Paris, Longchamp, Saturnalia will have to win the Japanese Derby (Group 1), on May 26 at Tokyo racecourse.
FRENCH KING making his way towards a Group 1 Victory
The Umm Qarn-bred and HH Sheikh Abdullah Bin Khalifa Al Thani-owned French King (French Fifteen) has been entered in the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe 2019. He won the Group 2 Carl Jaspers-Preis in Köln, Germany, on Sunday, 5 May 2019, making him the first Umm Qarn-bred horse to take home a Group success for thoroughbreds in Europe. He was the winner of the 2019 HH The Amir Trophy (QR Gr1) at QREC Al Rayyan Park, Doha in February. After the win in Germany, his trainer Henri-Alex Pantall described him as a “a different horse this year than last year”
and said “I think he can go and take on some good Group races in France, and why not, climb to Gr1 level one day.”
The 81 entries include 16 for Coolmore, three for Coolmore in association with Flaxman Holdings, 12 for Godolphin, five for Aga Khan, five for Wertheimer and seven from Japan.