10/06/2013 12:47PM

Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe: Treve shines bright in five-length score over Orfevre


Treve blew away an elite field and now has a chance to go down as one of the best fillies in recent history after winning the Group 1, $6,254,439 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe on Sunday at Longchamp by five lengths.

Treve, undefeated after five races, became the third straight 3-year-old filly, following Danedream and Solemia, to capture the Arc. Three-year-old fillies get a double weight break for age and sex in the race, and Treve carried 119 pounds compared to 131 for Orfevre, who finished second in the Arc for the second straight year, edging French 3-year-old Intello on Sunday.

Thierry Jarnet rode Treve, picking up the mount last week when Frankie Dettori, aboard for Treve’s win in her Arc prep last month, broke his ankle. It was the second Arc win for the 46-year-old Jarnet, whose other Arc triumph came back in 1994 with Carnegie. Jarnet rode Moonlight Cloud to a spectacular victory in the Prix de la Foret later on Sunday’s card.

Treve also provided trainer Christiane Head-Maarek with her second Arc win. Her first, in 1979 with Three Troikas, was even more distant than Jarnet’s. Head-Maarek, the daughter of legendary French horsemen Alec Head and the sister of former jockey and trainer Freddie Head, had not won a Group 1 race for three years until Treve captured the French Oaks in June.

Treve was bred by Alec Head and owned by the Head family through that Oaks win, but Sheikh Joaan bin Hamad al Thani of Qatar purchased her privately in July, leaving Treve in the care of Head-Maarek, but changing riders from Jarnet, who had ridden Treve in her first three races, to Dettori, Sheikh Joaan’s stable rider. Dettori had ridden Treve to victory in the Group 1 Prix Vermeille last month at Longchamp.

Treve raced only once at 2, owing, her trainer has said, to a variety of minor ailments, but she has done nothing but move forward in four starts this year. Her Arc post position, 15, was thought to be a major impediment to success, with draws inside 10 considered far superior to the outside gates. Indeed, Treve lost a tremendous amount of ground in the race, but that proved no hindrance whatsoever.

As Joshua Tree led through the early and middle stages, tracked by Ocovango and Penglai Pavilion, Treve was held up near the back of an 18-horse field, fanned at least five paths wide around the right-handed bends on the 1 1/2-mile course. Jarnet never could find much cover, and Treve began moving up a half-mile out while still caught very wide. She reached the leaders three furlongs from home, made an early bid to seize command of the race with a quarter-mile to go, and flew through the stretch to win in the most convincing fashion. She was timed in 2:32.04 for 12 furlongs over soft going, and paid $11.60 to win in North American betting.

“She was all the time on the outside, but she’s so good - she’s incredible,” said Head-Maarek. “To do that, to be unbeaten like that, she’s the best I’ve ever had.”

Treve, a daughter of Motivator, might not race again in 2013, but she is expected to return for a 4-year-old campaign next season, though it is difficult to imagine the filly improving much over her blistering 2013 form.

For Orfevre, it was a second straight defeat as the Arc favorite, though this one far less dramatic than last year’s, when he stopped in deep stretch after taking a convincing lead. Orfevre also raced wide throughout his trip Sunday, and was caught in very tight quarters on three occasions during the race’s final five furlongs. But Orfevre had a clean run in the final quarter-mile and could make no ground on Treve, while edging clear of Intello for second.

Three-year-old Intello ran well in defeat, quieting skeptics who thought he would not stay 12 furlongs and finishing a neck clear of Orfevre’s 3-year-old Japanese counterpart Kizuna.

Other notable finishers were Al Kazeem (6th) Ruler of the World (7th) and Flintshire (8th).

Jay Wheeler More than 1 year ago
Treve is the 12th three-year-old filly to win the Arc in its 92 runnings. The other 11 were: Danedream 2011; Zarkava 2008; Akiyda 1982; Detriot 1980; Three Troikas 1979; San San 1972; La Sorellina 1953; Coronation 1949; Nikellora 1945; Samos 1935; and Pearl Cap 1931. The only years in which three-year-old fillies won it consecutively were 1979 and ’80. In 1935 it was an all three-year-old filly finish: Samos beat French Oaks winner Peniche by a neck with a further neck back to Corrida who went on to win the Arc in ’36 and ’37 and remains the only female to win it twice.
IRANIANMULLAH More than 1 year ago
The french train for the arc not the breeders cup.. Treve ran like she did her last race. She has that Freddie Head style closing kick. as Moonligh Cloud and Goldikova. The french at Deaville are the best trainers in the world. Most of the arc winners come from that training facility. for those interested Youtube has all the big races of the world's top horses.
william More than 1 year ago
If you've not seen the Arc in person you should. There's nothing like it in horse racing anywhere. Treve's excellerations reminded me of Suave Dancer's in 1991 except the latter was almost caught 50 meters out by another sensational 3 yr old filly, Magic Night. Hats off to Jarnet, the Heads and everyone involved. It looks like Cricket Head has the veritable next Ribot. Possible anyway...
redboy More than 1 year ago
Thats is one FANTASTIC looking fillie.And she runs like shes in beast mode,I'm so glad i got to watch her run.
chad mc rory More than 1 year ago
If they don't break Orfevre from counting horses, he will disappoint again. There is a method.
Jean Mikle More than 1 year ago
Note that Treve ran the final 3 furlongs in under 35 seconds: http://www.racingpost.com/horses/home.sd?story=1542729#newsArchiveTabs=last7DaysNews
Jay Wheeler More than 1 year ago
Solemia, a foal of 2008, was a four-year-old when she won the 2012 Arc.
Big Jeff More than 1 year ago
OOh + 1 for the error police.
Perl More than 1 year ago
Fillies shouldn't get weight breaks in championship races such as the arc.
Lawrence Macselwiney More than 1 year ago
At least not a double weight break. 12lbs is a lot. especially when the filly is on even terms with the top starters. 5lbs would be plenty.
Colette More than 1 year ago
One ray of hope that we could see Treve in the US, next year, is that her trainer is Freddie Head's sister. Freddie wasn't adverse to bringing Goldikova out here for the Breeder's Cup. So, as a family, the Breeder's Cup is not "foreign" to them & they have been extremely successful bringing a horse out here. Maybe Freddie's BC success will be an influence
Mr. Ed More than 1 year ago
Much more likely they target the Arc next year, more money, more prestige to them, and too close to the Breeders Cup so don't get your hopes up.
Dawood K More than 1 year ago
LANDALUCIE !!!!! Anybody remember her ? She could have been one of the top fillies that ever ran the track if it was not for the COLITIS
John Murray More than 1 year ago
Landaluce right on, ditto Ruffian and Rachel as possible 3 yo fillies capable of beating males at 1 1/2 miles, certainly the present crop of males.