Frankie Dettori has spoken of his delight at the news his “filly of a lifetime” Enable will stay in training next season.
John Gosden's filly has enjoyed a fantastic three-year-old campaign, winning the English, Irish and Yorkshire Oaks, as well as producing spectacular performances to beat the boys in the King George at Ascot and, most recently, the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe at Chantilly.
In the immediate aftermath of her French victory Gosden was keen on the idea of the daughter of Nathaniel staying in training and after deliberating for a week, owner Khalid Abdullah has confirmed she will press on in 2018, with a second Arc bid at a renovated Longchamp high on the agenda.
A statement issued by Abdullah's Juddmonte Farms read: “Prince Khalid bin Abdullah is pleased to announce that Enable will stay in training for 2018.
“Her racing program will be decided in the New Year, but the defense of the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe will be high in consideration.”
Dettori has partnered Enable to each of her six triumphs this season and is relishing the prospect of getting back on board the star filly next year.
He told Press Association Sport: “I'm very pleased and grateful to Prince Khalid for keeping her in training because, to me, she is a filly of a lifetime.
“What she has achieved this year has been nothing short of sensational. I'm looking forward to having her back next year so we can have another crack at going for the Arc and all the other big races.
“She is the best filly I have ridden. She won five Group Ones, including two Classics, and she didn't just win them, she won them amazingly.
“I think the racing fans will look forward to seeing her race next year, including me, as I'm her biggest fan.
“I didn't have to say very much. John Gosden knows the filly better than I do and he spoke to Prince Khalid and came to the decision.”
Officials at Ascot welcomed the news, with the Berkshire track's Director of Racing and Communications Nick Smith hoping Enable will return to Berkshire next summer to defend her King George crown.
He said: “It's obviously great news Enable stays in training and you would have to think the King George would be one of the serious options her connections would look at.
“I think connections of Cracksman have already said the King George will be a big target for him, so it could potentially be the first time we'll see Enable versus Cracksman, which would be exciting.”
While it would be a dream clash at this stage, the news Enable will race on at four means it is still a possibility she could clash with brilliant Australian mare Winx, who claimed her 21st straight victory last weekend and is in line for a possible appearance at Royal Ascot in June.
“At the moment we're just hoping Winx comes through the Cox Plate and then hopefully her connections have the option of running in the Queen Anne or the Prince of Wales's Stakes,” Smith added.
“I suppose coming back to a mile and a quarter at Ascot might be out of Enable's comfort zone, but obviously those decisions will be made by her connections.
“As far as today's news is concerned, we're very much hoping Enable will be back here for the King George.”
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