07/29/2017 1:11PM

Enable makes major statement in winning King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes


The 3-year-old filly Enable is at the top of European racing.

On Saturday, Enable won her third consecutive Group 1 race, and her first start against older males, in the $1,508,340 King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot in England.

The win had major ramifications for the buildup to the Group 1 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe at Chantilly, France, on Oct. 1, Europe’s top flat race. Enable is now the 2-1 future-book favorite for the Arc de Triomphe over the French runners Almanzor and Brametot, who are 7-1.

Enable, the 5-4 favorite with bookmakers, won the King George at 1 1/2 miles on rain-softened turf by 4 1/4 lengths over Ulysses, the winner of the Group 1 Eclipse Stakes at Sandown Park on July 8.

The full brothers Idaho and Highland Reel finished third and fourth. Highland Reel won the Breeders’ Cup Turf at Santa Anita last November and the Group 1 Prince of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot on June 21.

Enable was always near the front in the King George. Ridden by Frankie Dettori, Enable stalked the longshot pacesetter, stablemate Maverick Wave, to early stretch before taking the lead a quarter-mile from the finish. Enable quickly put away another stablemate in Jack Hobbs before drawing away in the final furlong.

Winning trainer John Gosden told the British press that Enable is the best filly he has trained. Owned by Juddmonte Farms, Enable won the English Oaks at Epsom Downs on June 20 and the Irish Oaks at The Curragh on July 15.

By Nathaniel, Enable has won 5 of 6 starts. She is expected to start in the Group 1 Yorkshire Oaks at 1 1/2 miles at York Racecourse on Aug. 24 in advance of her first trip to France for the Arc de Triomphe. The Yorkshire Oaks is the rare Oaks race for 3-year-old fillies as well as older fillies and mares.

Enable was the third female to win the King George in the last six years and gave Gosden his third win in the race this decade. He won with Nathaniel in 2011 and with the filly Taghrooda in 2014. The German-bred filly Danedream won the 2012 King George as a 4-year-old.