ANOTHER spectacular Saturday in the US – European import Flintshire’s stock continues to rise, but it was an underdog who stole the show with a record breaking performance in the Travers!
Formerly trained in France by Andre Fabre, Flintshire finds it much easier to get his head in front since being moved to the US. In top company often found out at the highest level, he’s thriving under US sun where he’s encountering slightly lesser opposition on fast Amercian turf.
Last night he ran out an easy success in the Sword Dancer – a third Grade 1 victory in the US – despite having to delay his run when he found himself short of room on the inside rail when turning for home. But he found away out and surged through the gap as soon as it open up.
In the end a commanding win for a classy middle-distance horse. Flintshire has now five Group 1 victories to his name – certainly not shabby!
Flintshire was impressive, but it was only a harbinger for things to come. The Travers loomed large and clearly promised to be an absolute cracker. It didn’t disappoint!
Preakness and Haskel winner Exaggerator was the logical favourite, but he – and very few others – where able to land a blow as they all where quite literally blown away by what was arguably one the most spectacular Dirt performances we’ve seen in a very long time – Arrogate simply ripped the field to pieces in the home straight!
A rather unfancied 10/1 chance, he had to overcome a tricky draw on inside and was pushed forward right from the start to grab the lead around the first turn. They were flying, setting some frantic fractions, yet Arrogate, despite being pressed for the lead throughout, travelled strongly and kept his rivals at bay.
Only a few horses where even in contention when Arrogate turned for home as the sole leader. Once Mike Smith called on for everything, the three year old son of Unbridled’s Song put the hammer down and blew open a huge gap.
A final winning margin of 13 and half lengths plus a new track record are clear indicators for what sort of special performance Arrogate produced in the Travers. A success that came out of the blue, given the Bob Baffert inmate only won a couple of Allowance Claimers up to that point – what a dramatic improvement!
Arrogate’s odds to land the Breeders Cup Classic subsequently tumbled – he’s now as low as 11/4 in the betting! And that leads to the question: can he re-produce this stunning piece of form in the November 5th showdown at Santa Anita?
Dominating @ 9/1 Ladbrokes
Golconda Prince @ 6/1 Betfred
3.10 Goodwood: Fidaawy @ 9/4 Sky