MELISSA JONES SAYS: Intello to shine in Arc
7:00am Saturday 5th October 2013 in Sport
THERE will be nowhere to hide as the Flat season draws to a close with a cracker of a contest tomorrow, the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe.
Chepstow bred Al Kazeem is 16-1 to wrest the prize from France and while that does seem a bit of an insult on his best form, he might find his rivals a bit too hot to handle.
I’m a believer he could make the frame, but being drawn widest of all looks to have cooked his chances of winning.
Owner John Deer would be happy if the five-year-old finishes in the first three.
The only certainty regarding this horse is his supporters, the owner and the rest of the team from Oakgrove Stud, are going to have a brilliant time in France.
It’s an honour for a relatively small Welsh operation to have a runner on the biggest stage of all.
TV pundit Lydia Hislop has tipped our raider, but while I would be happy to see him win, I feel it’s always vital to see what the home team have kept for the race.
The French always desperately want to win this 1m 4f contest, which has been won by racing greats like Sea the Stars, Montjeu and Dancing Brave.
Their Solemia took the prize in 2012 and tomorrow Criquette Head-Maarek’s unbeaten Treve is their shortest priced representative.
The three-year-old must have a strong shout, but may be a little inexperienced for such a contest.
It’s Andre Fabre’s 12-1 shot Intello which appeals as the most likely winner.
A mile was too short behind Moonlight Cloud and although some are doubting his stamina for an extra half a mile, he was not stopping at the end of 1m 2f in the Prix Du Jockey Club.
The French master has always held him in the highest regard and I doubt he would be running him if he felt he was not up to task.
Japan’s Orfevre is a worthy favourite, looking to avenge a narrow defeat in last year’s contest.
If ridden with a bit more patience this time, he rates the main danger.
It will be great to see the race broadcast on Channel 4.
Today the cameras take us to Ascot, Redcar and Newmarket.
It’s inevitable there will be some shocks as it is coming to the end of the Flat season; some horses will have gone off the boil while others might find a bit of form.
On paper, Caspar Netscher is the class act in Redcar’s 2.50 and if on song the four-year-old can take this race.
It’s about time the German 2,000 Guineas winner had some luck and entered the winner’s enclosure for the first time this year.
Gatewood is well capable of getting his head in front over at Ascot (2.40), after a lean time of it in Australia.
There is no-one better than rekindling a horse’s enthusiasm than John Gosden and the race conditions look ideal for the five-year-old.
SELECTIONS: Intello (Longchamp 3.15, Sunday), Redcar 2.50 Caspar Netscher, Ascot 2.40 Gatewood
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