Saturday 18 November 2017

Bad draw no problem for so you think

Looking at the field for tomorrow's Qatar Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe, the sole regret you could have is that neither Frankel nor Pour Moi is in attendance.

Needless to say, Frankel never seemed likely to contest the definitive middle-distance Group One this year, while Pour Moi's career succumbed to injury just over a month ago.

Other than that, the Longchamp showpiece has the makings of an excellent renewal, with last year's winner Workforce only fourth favourite to retain his crown.

Despite her supposedly poor draw in stall 13, Sarafina retains the market lead.

Third 12 months ago after enduring a horrendous passage around the home turn, Alain de Royer-Dupre's filly comes here at the top of her game and would be a worthy winner.

Likewise a case could be made for Galikova, Meandre, Reliable Man and Snow Fairy, but So You Think remains the value in the race at 5/1. Having brought an enormous reputation with him from the southern hemisphere, Aidan O'Brien's five-year-old was unlikely to ever live up to the hype in these parts.

What's more, his workman-like style never impresses, yet the only time he has been beaten since his arrival was when Ryan Moore got it badly wrong at Royal Ascot.

Other than that, So You Think has done everything that was asked of him, and the step up to a mile-and-a-half might actually suit Seamie Hefferenan's mount.

Any horse that can take up the lead just over a furlong out on soft ground in a Melbourne Cup will stay 12 furlongs on good going at Longchamp, so the only real negative tomorrow is the draw.

Trap 14 is not the one that connections would have picked, but, having said that, there are plenty of good horses similarly wide. If So You Think is beaten, the draw is unlikely to be the reason why.

Also worth consideration is Dream Ahead in the Foret.

Charles O'Brien's Bewitched may come up short in this, while Goldikova has looked a little vulnerable this year.

In contrast, Dream Ahead is an up-and-coming three-year-old with two Group Ones to his name already this year, and seven furlongs should be just within his reach.

Irish Independent

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