It’s Arc Weekend at Longchamp and it all kicks off at 12:30 on Saturday with the Group 2 Prix Dollar which is contested over a mile and two furlongs and I think this particular affair will go to the UK raider and short-priced favourite in LINE OF DUTY for Charlie Appleby and William Buick. Sporting the Godolphin blue he was last seen when finishing third in two successive Group 1’s the latter of those come at this track. He sets a very solid standard here on the back of those efforts and if turning up in that form will be very tough to beat.
The next race I’m going to look at is the 1:35 which is another Group 2 this time coming in the form of the Daniel Wildenstein and I like another Godolphin runner here which is Andre Fabre’s IMPULSIF who’s the mount of Mickael Barzalona. He’s been a huge improver as of late since reverting to the turf and it’s likely there’s a lot more to come from this four-year-old who should have no issue with the trip or the ground. The one to beat looks to be Olmedo however who sets the standard on recent form and also a mention needs to go to The Revenant who arrives here on the back of five straight wins and is also a soft ground specialist.
It’s Group 1 action where I turn my attention to next in the Prix de Royallieu which takes place at 3:25 and is a race for Filles & Mares. The one I’ve sided with here is John Gosden’s ENBIHAAR who currently sits at the top of the market at a general 2/1, she’s a horse I’ve become a huge fan of this season and has won three successive Group 2’s coming into this and looks well worth a crack at Group 1 level. The ground may be a question mark for her however her class should see her through. The dangers in the line up look to be Andre Fabre’s Musis Amica who has Group 1 form to her name and there’s also a strong UK presence with two stablemates of the favourite in the likes of Lah Ti Dar and Oaks winner Anapurna who’s the mount of Frankie Dettori.
Next up for me is the 4:00 Group 2 Prix Chaudenay and in this one-mile seven-furlong contest I’m siding with the Martyn Meade trained TECHNICIAN who’s set to be ridden by Pierre Charles-Boudot. He arrives here with patchy form this season however he did win a Listed race on soft ground at this track back in the summer and he also has a Group 3 win to his name. It would be no surprise for me should he show his true form once again on this ground and at this venue. There’s a whole host of them who present themselves has main challengers such as Nayef Road, Dashing Willoughby and Moonlight Spirit.
Concluding my Saturday Preview is the Group 1 Prix du Cadran at 4:35 which is contested over two miles and four furlongs and Mark Johnston’s Dee Ex Bee sets the standard here and is probably a worthy short-priced favourite on the back of his efforts behind Stradivarius this term. I’ve tried to take him on though and I’ve done that with a home challenger in WAY TO PARIS who’s the mount of Cristian Demuro. He’s a very consistent performer over this trip and shouldn’t have any real problem with the ground, he also got the better of Marmelo here in a Group 2 back in the summer which was a very gutsy performance. A repeat of that sort of level would see him bang there once more. Call To Wind is another to note for Freddy Head who would be a big player if turning up on song.