Ruby Walsh and Paddy Power are unconvinced that Stradivarius can win the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe after John Gosden’s charge was beaten by Anthony Van Dyck at Longchamp last weekend.
The pair of top-class stayers went head-to-head in the Prix Foy on Sunday, with Anthony Van Dyck taking victory by a short neck in what is seen as a trial for the Arc over the same course and distance.
The 1m 4f trip was shorter than Stradivarius’ favoured distance of two miles or more and speaking on the latest episode of the now twice-weekly From The Horse’s Mouth podcast, Paddy claimed Anthony van Dyck’s win shows Stradivarius will struggle to keep up with fleet-footed favourites Love and Enable in the showpiece event.
Paddy Power: “Ruby has always said that Anthony Van Dyck needs about three miles and he might be right, because Stradivarius looked like he was about to come up and get by him [at the post].
“Anthony Van Dyck just ground it out, but they’re saying it was a tactical race and they’ll be saying it’s a reason to skew the form, but there was nothing between them at the end.
“Both want a longer trip and while Anthony Van Dyck won it, I still don’t think he’s a superstar.
“It probably does answer the question about whether Stradivarius is good enough, or fast enough, to win the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe – which I don’t think he is.
“I don’t think he can win the Arc, but I would still send him to compete next month.”
— At The Races (@AtTheRaces) September 13, 2020
Stradivarius was third over a mile and a half in the Coronation Cup at Newmarket in June, but bounced back over longer trips to secure his third Gold Cup at Ascot later that month and a record fourth Goodwood Cup later in July.
Trainer Gosden has confirmed that his horse will run in the Arc despite the recent defeat at Longchamp, although regular rider Frankie Dettori will instead be on board Enable as she chases a third win in Europe’s richest race.
When asked about Stradivarius’ preparation for the meeting next month, Ruby Walsh said he would have opted for a slightly different approach and would have banked on victory in the Irish St Leger over one mile and six furlongs.
Ruby Walsh: “If he was mine, he would have been at The Curragh on Sunday in the Irish St Leger and then I would be going to the Arc with the dream still alive!”
*Odds quoted on the widget are Antepost prices which means that if your selection does not run in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe for whatever reason – you will lose your stake under traditional Antepost rules.
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