Frankie's hope for world rule
Dettori in line for Arc ride on O'Brien's Prix Foy winner
Following last Sunday's Longchamp Trials Day and the retirement of Sea The Moon, the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe picture looks as clear as mud yet again with the race being thrown wide open continuously this season.
With the victories of The Grey Gatsby over Australia and Kingston Hill in the English St Leger as well, it's not just the race line-up that has been thrown up in the air but also in recent weeks jockey bookings for one of the world's most lucrative Flat races have been under scrutiny.
It is no secret that it has been a turbulent couple of years for Frankie Dettori and indeed a pretty up-and-down week too after losing the ride on last year's Prix de l'Arc de Troimphe winner Treve, who subsequently ran disappointingly in the Prix Vermeille at Longchamp last Sunday.
Treve's trainer, Criquette Head-Maarek, insists that the filly shouldn't be ruled out of winning back-to-back Arcs with Thierry Jarnet set to ride her again but Dettori may well now be in line for arguably a better ride in the race as he was suitably impressed with Aidan O'Brien's Prix Foy winner Ruler Of The World.
Last year's Epsom Derby winner is now part-owned by Al Shaqab Racing, who retain Dettori, and the Italian earned plenty of plaudits for his perfectly judged ride on Ruler Of The World in last Sunday's Prix Foy at Longchamp when the pair kicked away from the field and held Flintshire by a length-and-a-half. Dettori said yesterday: "I was very impressed. He's a very, very good horse. The time was great, he did it all on his own - he had to do it the hard way and it never looked in doubt."
The four-year-old was having his first run since March when he finished down the field in the Dubai World Cup and the son of Galileo finished seventh in last year's renewal of the Arc behind Treve.
"He'd also had a long lay-off and I'm sure that Aidan will improve him a little bit more and he is the Derby winner.
"Aidan told me he stays well and I didn't want it to turn into a sprint, I had to make the first move to make sure I took the sting out of the field and it worked."
Dettori would now be in line for the ride on Ruler Of The World especially if Aidan O'Brien also ran the €6m filly Chicquita, who made her first start for new connections at the Curragh last weekend. Joseph O'Brien would look the most likely candidate to ride Chicquita who, on her first run in over a year since winning the Darley Irish Oaks, had to settle for second place behind Dermot Weld's Tarfasha.