Five Aidan O’Brien Horses Who Could Run in the 2020 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe

This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA

Aidan O’Brien has trained two winners of the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe at his Ballydoyle stables and looks sure to have another strong hand in Europe’s most valuable race this year.

The Irish master handler first landed the Longchamp spoils back in 2007 with Dylan Thomas. O’Brien then took a clean sweep in 2016, however, saddling an Arc 1-2-3 with Found leading Highland Reel and Order of St George home at Chantilly.

France’s most famous horse race has since returned to the capital in 2018, but the best an O’Brien runner has managed since in the mile-and-a-half contest is fourth. Having run as many as five horses in the Arc in recent years, the Ballydoyle battalions could pitch up in Paris again this autumn.

Which horses could be in the O’Brien team and lining up at Longchamp on 4 October? Let’s take a look the potential Irish contenders for the Arc.

This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA

Dual British Classic winner Love is prominent in the betting at 11/4 following her sensational victory in the Epsom Oaks. In landing that prestigious race for three-year-old fillies, she broke the course record set by Enable, who won the Arc in both 2017 and 2018.

Love won’t meet John Gosden’s wonder mare until Longchamp, as a potential clash in the Yorkshire Oaks during the Ebor Festival was ruled out. Enable warms up for the Arc with a different prep.

If Love was a fancied Classic winner, you cannot say of the same of Serpentine. His enterprising and all the way win under a front-running ride from Emmet McNamara in the Epsom Derby took the field and punters by surprise.

The bookmakers don’t believe that success for Serpentine was entirely a fluke either, as his Arc odds are 12/1 in the ante post market. Magical has finished tenth and fifth in the race in each of the last two years, meanwhile, and the likeable five-year-old mare is a 16/1 shot to make it third time lucky.

One of those caught out at Epsom in The Derby was Mogul. However, following a couple of disappointing runs he got a result at Glorious Goodwood in the Gordon Stakes.

Although more is expected of the three-year-old colt than winning at Group 3 level, his Arc claims and odds of 25/1 will shorten if landing the Grand Prix de Paris at Longchamp in September. Mogul has that option or the Group 2 Great Voltigeur at York as potential routes to the race.

Japan came fourth in the Arc last year, but has four lengths to find on Enable on that form and may have lost his way a little since landing the Juddmonte International of 2019. The way he dropped tamely away in his King George rematch with her when just a head separated them in the Eclipse at Sandown suggests the four-year-old may remain over a mile-and-a-quarter.

Joining Japan as a 33/1 outsider for the Arc is Irish 1000 Guineas scorer Peaceful. She came off worst in a blanket finish to the Prix de Diane at Chantilly when last in action, but was only beaten a short-neck and head by Fancy Blue and Alpine Star.

The winner has since come out and franked the form with victory in the Nassau Stakes at Glorious Goodwood. However many horses he sends from Ireland to the Arc this year, O’Brien and his powerful owners will be hungry for more success.

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