Last year I analysed the Longchamp Arc trials and came up with the 1-2 on the day of one of my favourite betting races. This year things look a little more complicated. We have two very good Japanese horse high in the market and once again the Japanese appear to have a formidable challenge. The Arc trials on Sunday were run on very fast ground, something which is less likely to be repeated come Arc day. Supporters of Treve will certainly be hoping so.The fastest overall time was run by Ectot in 2m 26.36s, followed by Ruler of the World in 2m 26.93s and finally the Vermeille winner Baltic Baronnes in 2m 28.22s. All times were significantly below standard indicating very fast ground. The final sectional on my watch paints an initially confusing picture. I was hoping to see Ectot clock the best final fraction in which case I would be rushing to the bookmakers assuming I am happy about the ground in two weeks. The final sections however are as following.
Ruler Of The World 37.81s
Baltic Baroness 36.88s
My initial impression from these figures is that no one horse particularly stands out. They appear to have run final sections pretty much in line with their overall times. You can certainly say that Ectot gets the trip having come off the fastest early pace but if the rain comes this may change. I also find myself coming to the conclusion that the idea that Ruler of the World needs soft is false even though he has run excellent races on a soft surface. I expect Ruler to put up a bold show again but I find myself attracted to him for the QUIPCO Champion stakes where last year he should have won the race, having fallen victim to a poor trip. The Champion usually does not quite have the same depth of competition and last year he showed that if the ground eases he has the required speed and stamina to win it.
The most interesting aspect of the Sunday trials however was the run of Treve. I have already stated that last years win was the most impressive 12f win I have seen in nearly 40 years of racing. After pulling and running wide she had no right to win that race yet alone pulverize the opposition. But what can we make of Sundays run ?. Is she gone has many seem to think ?. I don’t think so. Her sectional for the trial was 36.53 and it was clear that off such a moderate early pace and running wide into the straight, the only way she could have won would have been through a hard race and her trainer has wisely given instructions that in no way should she leave her Arc race in the straight last Sunday. She ran a great trial from an impossible task on ground that does not really suit her. If its lightning fast again in two weeks then I would be wary but if the rain comes, even in moderation, she is still likely to be the best in the race and her current odds are an insult.