She was the top story heading into the Breeders' Cup, and on Saturday Enable delivered a thrilling victory in the $4 million Breeders' Cup Turf, winning a two-horse battle with Magical (IRE) down the stretch.
Enable, the back-to-back winner of the Arc de Triomphe, became the first horse to ever win the Arc and the Turf in the same year. The 4-year-old filly worked for this win, having to fend off 3-year-old Aidan O'Brien-trained Magical throughout a stretch run that took place on an outside path on the turf course. Enable's rider, Frankie Dettori, said he took her outside leaving the far turn so she could get a trip over fresh ground. Juddmonte Farms owned and bred Enable prevailed by three-quarters of a length, stopping the clock in 2:32.65 for the mile and a half. It was another nine lengths back to third-place finisher Sadler's Joy.
“It was a wonderful, wonderful stretch between two great fillies,” said Enable's trainer John Gosden. “She won with sheer grit and determination.”
“She conquered America! She's done it,” shouted Dettori while being interviewed by Donna Barton Brothers on NBC.
The victory was the 10th from 11 career starts for Enable, the 14th Breeders' Cup win for Dettori and the sixth victory for Juddmonte Farms as owner.
Transcript of post race press conference:
THE MODERATOR: The happy recap of an historic victory by Enable, first horse ever to win the Arc and the Breeders' Cup Turf in the fourth year. Fourth filly to win the Breeders' Cup Turf, joining the likes of Pebbles, Miss Alleged, and Found. We're joined by Lanfranco Dettori, the winning rider, and Lord Teddy Grimthope, the racing manager for Prince Khalid Abdullah.
Congratulations, gentlemen. Frankie, take us through the trip? And as pleased and delighted and proud as you are, are you also a bit relieved to have the behind you?
LANFRENCO DETTORI: You better believe it. I was a bit further back than I wanted to be. But from the bend to the back straight, I was four-wide. I felt that the ground was much worse on the inside. I didn't have the novelty to be wide with the draw. I was drawn two, and she didn't break that well. Then the pace was on straightaway. I was trying to get off the fence. But was still quite kind of pinned on the fence coming into the first turn.
I was struggling to keep my position. She was shuffling with the legs. She was spinning. I was kind of struggling to keep my position. I managed to get up off the fence, then she was moving good again. She was happy. She wasn't struggling. I led the place.
We were going pretty fast for a mile-and-a-half on soft ground. Then I knew that pace couldn't keep up. So then I was just waiting for her to give me the message she was ready to go. I kept my arm inside. The only one that can give me a race is Magical with lots of ground. I said to myself just wait, let her fill herself up with oxygen, then we'll wait till the straight. Obviously Magical took me on pretty early, and then after a while is a punch up now, she was the best.
When asked, C'mon, baby, let's go, she went half a length up, and also ran with some difficulties. I knew then she was fighting for me. Ryan was like a (indiscernible), wasn't going away, was always there.
I knew that she was strong today. But the ground kind of spoiled it for my filly because I know she likes soft, but she really found it difficult. But she's a superstar.
THE MODERATOR: Lord Teddy Grimthorpe, can you comment on the historic nature of her win today and also on the difficulties you've had in keeping her healthy, getting her to the races?
TEDDY GRIMTHORPE: What was the first question (laughter)?
THE MODERATOR: The historic nature of the win.
TEDDY GRIMTHORPE: I mean, Prince Khalid has always been a huge supporter of the Breeders' Cup. First thing in his diary, he wants to know when the Breeders' Cup is, where it is. He's been an absolute staunch supporter from the very beginning, the concept of course he has really embraced. He's shown that we sends his best horses to compete here.
To have this historic day for Juddmonte, really, to have two major, major winners, and a filly doing something that no other horse has ever done, only eight horses have won two Arcs, and she's come back. Injury was a setback at the end of the spring, the beginning of the summer. Everything that could have gone right did really go right in terms of recuperation. She was back in her box. She was frustrated. She wasn't going out. She needed some rest.
She started walking, started trotting, started cantering. All that process is a very vital, vital part of the preparation to make sure she's right. I think John and his team, everyone who has been involved with her, she's about four stone overweight with polos from Frankie (laughter).
All that has sort of come together in the embodiment of a really special performance today.
THE MODERATOR: I'm sure the media would like to ask questions of Frankie and Teddy Grimthorpe.
Q. How much would you compare how much you had left with Enable today versus how much you had left with her at the Arc?
LANFRENCO DETTORI: She galluped the line. She had every chance of throwing the towel in, but she didn't. She was very tough. Just look at the space we left till the third. It's pretty remarkable for the Breeders' Cup Classic.
Magical, she's a duck in water in these kind of conditions. She's a tough nut to crack. Two great fillies. Yeah, obviously she was fitter in the arc, but conditions made it a bit difficult.
Q. Teddy, what is next for Enable?
TEDDY GRIMTHORPE: You asked me after the Arc in Paris (laughter). I think the sort of most important thing is to at least sit back and just enjoy this. We tend to sort of move on far too quickly. Really the enormity of this, for the whole team, it's been so emotional. She has created those emotions within us all, especially within Juddmonte.
I'm sure Prince Khalid will want to at least sit back and enjoy this. There's no great hurry. She's going to go back home to Newmarket. We'll make sure she's all right, then think about the future.
Q. Frankie, you're well out into the track, coming down the stretch. Did Magical sort of float you out at one point and the two of you sort of kept going from there or did it materialize in a different manner?
LANFRENCO DETTORI: I didn't want to go back on the side of the turn because she didn't like it. Obviously the stable companion just drifted out conveniently. But I didn't mind because I was still on the fresh ground. I might have gone one horse wider than I wanted to the last little bit. It's one of those things.
Q. Do you think Enable sensed Magical being there, as well, kind of dug in extra as a result?
LANFRENCO DETTORI: Yeah. Be honest with you, she eyeballed me all right. At that moment I didn't ask the full gear. Then is that suspense moment when you know she's going to go or not, and she did. Whew, thank God for that (laughter).
TEDDY GRIMTHORPE: I'm officially on holiday now.
THE MODERATOR: Congratulations. Enjoy your holiday.
New to the Paulick Report? Click here to sign up for our daily email newsletter to keep up on this and other stories happening in the Thoroughbred industry.
Copyright © 2019 Paulick Report.