Enable is a four-year-old filly trained by John Gosden, who in 2018 became only the eighth horse to win the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe twice. Connections are hoping she will be able to return to Paris in 2019 to try and become the first horse to win the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe three times.
Trainer: John Gosden
Jockeys: Frankie Dettori, Rab Havlin, William Buick
Owner: Khalid Abdullah
Breeder: Juddmonte Farms
Enable was sired by Nathaniel out of a mare called Concentric. However, as Nathaniel was sired by Galileo and Concentric was sired by Sadler’s Wells, it’s easy to see where her star mix of speed and stamina comes from.
As a two-year-old, Enable made a winning debut over a mile on the all-weather track at Newcastle in November 2016. She was only second-favourite that day but won easily by 3¾ lengths under Rab Havlin.
Having made just the one racecourse appearance as a two-year-old, Enable was next seen on the racecourse as a three-year-old at Newbury in April. The race was over 10-furlongs but, having looked in need of the run in the paddock beforehand, she ran third behind stablemate and favourite Shutter Speed at odds of 5/1 in the hands of William Buick. John Gosden must have known how much she would improve for that run though, as he was quick to suggest that Enable would be his English Oaks filly.
Her second run of the season was at Chester, where she was ridden by Frankie Dettori for the first time. It was the beginning of a beautiful partnership, as she got the better of the Aidan O’Brien Alluringly to win the Cheshire Oaks, despite being sent-off as the 2/1 second-favourite.
Enable then turned up for The Oaks in June, when she was sent-off the joint second favourite behind the odds-on Rhodedendron. However, whilst the favourite didn’t truly see out the trip, Enable showed that stamina was her forte as she stormed clear to win by five-lengths to claim what would be the first of many Group 1’s.
Enable then confirmed herself as the leading middle-distance filly of her generation by winning the Irish Oaks, after which John Gosden pitched her against the boys and older horses in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes. It proved to be a shrewd move as she outstayed the high-class Ulysses by four and a half lengths.
She then added another Group 1 to her CV when winning the Yorkshire Oaks, a race that proved not much more than an exercise canter as she won by five lengths at odds of 1/4. Gosden then decided to pitch his star filly into the toughest all-age race of the whole season, the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, where she never looked in trouble on her way to a 2½ lengths success as the 10/11 favourite.
A training setback stopped Enable having any chance of running in any of the big spring or summer races in 2018, but connections remained hopeful she would return in the Autumn with the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe as her major target.
Gosden decided to try and give her a low-key warm-up on Kempton’s all-weather track in the Group 3 September Stakes. However, the entries included that season’s King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes runner-up Crystal Ocean. Enable didn’t give him or her other rivals a chance though as she put up an impressive front-running display, after which Gosden said she had only been 80-85% fit. Her odds to win the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe duly tumbled from 5/1 to evens.
It was doubtful that Enable was at 100% of her powers when she ran in the 2018 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, but she got lucky with a low-draw, whilst her most fancied rivals were drawn wide. Racing near the pace, as usual, she kicked-on in the straight and managed to hold the fast-finishing Sea Of Class by a neck.
Possible Future Entries
Enable will hopefully stay in training as a five-year-old, with a third victory in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe her major target. Other races she could take in on route include the 2019 King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes and the 2019 Yorkshire Oaks.