There has been quite a shake-up in a number of ante-post markets for this summer’s top middle-distance races following the news that brilliant filly Enable, trained by John Gosden (pictured above), has met with a setback and is unlikely to make her seasonal return until August at the earliest.
The Prince Khalid Abdullah-owned filly reportedly has fluid on her knee and her training regime will be halted until connections are fully able to assess the extent of the condition.
The daughter of Nathaniel set last season alight with a series of stunning successes at the highest level, following her five length romp in the Investec Oaks at Epsom last June (see video below) with an even wider margin success in the Irish equivalent six weeks later.
It was her breathtaking display in the King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot in late-July in which she slammed high-class older horses, beating Ulysses by four-and-a-half lengths, that set Enable apart as a truly exceptional three-year-old filly. She went on to continue her winning run under Frankie Dettori with an easy victory in the Yorkshire Oaks at York in August, then ended a stellar campaign with a superb two-and-a-half length success in Europe’s premier middle-distance race, the Prix de l’Arc De Triomphe (see video below), at Chantilly in October, beating Andre Fabre’s Cloth of Stars, old rival Ulysses, and smart stayer Order of St George, among others.
“Enable has met with a setback in training,” Teddy Grimthorpe, racing manager to Prince Khalid Abdullah, told reporters. “She has some filling in her knee which is being fully investigated. The advice that we have is, that given reasonable circumstances, she should be ready to run in August as a preparation for the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe.”
Previously on general offer at 4/7 for the Group 1 Investec Coronation Cup at Epsom on June 1, Enable’s absence means that Aidan O’Brien’s Cliffs of Moher, winner of a Group 2 at Naas yesterday, has advanced to be new favourite with many firms, although 888Sport still go 5/1 in what is now a confused market. Stable companion Capri is 11/2 with Paddy Power, while Enable’s very smart stable companion Cracksman, winner of the Group 1 Prix Ganay recently, may possibly step into the breach and is 4/1 with Sky Bet.
Cracksman’s preferred target however may be the Prince of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot later next month for which he is a top priced Evens with Coral.
Enable was a general 3/1 favourite to win the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe for a second time at Longchamp in October, but has been pushed out to 5/1 with William Hill, Cracksman emerging as the new market leader at a top priced 11/4 with Ladbrokes.
Written by Paul Alster
Paul Alster has been part of the British and international racing media for more than three decades working as a race commentator, TV/radio presenter, journalist, betting correspondent, SP returner, and form analyst. He’s always sought out overpriced runners in handicap races, a quest that excites him as much now as it did at the start of his career.