Updated on 09/17/2011 10:27PM

Late run propels Hurricane Run to Arc win

Hurricane Run draws off to a two-length victory to give trainer Andre Fabre his sixth Arc de Triomphe

PARIS, FRANCE - With a pre-race Longchamp deluge adding drama to excitement, Hurricane Run battled through the elements with an electrifying late run up the rail to win the $2.16 million Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe and clinch the mythical Thoroughbred championship of Europe.

In a scintillating finish, Hurricane Run drew clear of the gallant stayer Westerner after having appeared to be hopelessly beaten and trapped near the back of the 15-runner field entering the 2 1/2-furlong stretch.

Kieren Fallon needed all of his considerable resources to find a way home for Hurricance Run, who in victory was emulating his sire Montjeu, the 1999 Arc winner.

Fallon had been content to let Hurricane Run linger in 14th place up the long, uphill backstretch as the 3-year-old filly Shawanda led the way in a blinding rain.

In mid-stretch Johnny Murtagh found a gap for Epsom Derby winner Motivator, who grabbed a narrow, short-lived lead. But there came Westerner on the outside and, as Motivator drifted off the rail under Murtagh's right-hand whipping, Fallon and Hurricane Run saw the waters parting.

There was no hesitation on the winner's part once his chance came. Employing a turn of foot, described by owner Michael Tabor, as "incredible", the winner was home free.

Incredible is an apt description of a horse who would still be undefeated but for a heartbreaking neck loss to Shamardal in the French Derby, since which Hurricane Run has been purchased by Tabor and won both the Irish Derby and the Prix Niel. He covered the 1 1/2 miles in 2:27.40 on ground that was being softened by the unexpected rain from its daylong setting at good to soft, but nothing was going to stop him on this day.

Plans are fluid. "I haven't talked about the Breeders' Cup Turf yet with Andre Fabre, but Hurricane Run will stay in training next year," Tabor said. "I want to have fun with him."

Fabre, who was winning his record sixth Arc, would not compare him with any of his five previous winners, least of all Peintre Celebre, widely considered the best Arc winner of the last 20 years. "Hurricane Run is my friend," the French master trainer said, " and I don't rate my friends.

Westerner, who led ever so briefly inside the final furlong was just two lengths behind the 1.90-1 winner with defending champ Bago a fast closing third, 1-1/2 lengths further back. Shirocco was up for fourth for Fabre while Motivator faded to fifth and Shawanda to sixth.

Of the vanquished, Bago is very likely to be at Belmont Park for the Breeders' Cup, but his connections, trainer Jonathan Pease and owners the Niarchos Family, haven't yet decided between the Turf and the Classic. As for Motivator, his trainer Michael Bell said that "he is being considered for the Breeders' Cup Turf, but he is also entered for the Champion Stakes 1 1/4 miles at Newmarket on Oct. 15)."

Give Kieren Fallon the last word. "Huricane Run is one of the most powerful horses I have ever ridden, and he'll be even better next year."

New Yorkers can only keep their fingers crossed that Tabor and Fabre decided to bring him to Belmont Park for the Breeders' Cup Turf, where a meeting with Shakespeare is what the world needs now.