Investec Derby runner-up Jack Hobbs may have been expected to dispose of the opposition in Kempton Park’s Group 3 totescoop6 September Stakes with the minimum of fuss this afternoon but the Irish Derby winner could not have been more impressive in landing odds of 1-5 under a supremely confident ride from William Buick resulting in the son of Halling becoming clear second favourite behind dual winner Treve for next month’s Qatar Prix De L’Arc de Triomphe at Longchamp.
John Gosden’s colt is now a top price 7-1 with Betvictor for Europe’s richest race on Sunday 4th October behind 2-1 market leader Treve following his comprehensive three and a quarter length victory over 66-1 outsider Sweeping Up over the one mile four furlong trip on the all-weather surface – although the horse, who runs in the Godolphin colours, remains a possibility for Ascot’s Champion Stakes just under two week’s later.
Speaking after yesterday’s prep race Gosden was certainly leaning towards a trip to the Bois de Boulogne, saying: ” I hadn’t done a lot of work with him and he was fresh down to the start, but in the race William managed to switch him off and get him relaxed, and that is important. There is no reason why we won’t go to France and he won well today. We were happy to get a nice prep race at home, rather than travelling over to France ( Prix Niel next Sunday ) and then travelling over again. I think he is an improving horse and like his father he will get better at four and five, there is no reason he won’t improve with age.”
At a general 8-1 French Derby winner New Bay is next in the ante-post Arc market with Gosden’s Golden Horn ( expected to reappear in next weekend’s Irish Champion Stakes ) available to back at 10-1 with several bookmakers, two points shorter than the 12-1 on offer about the unbeaten Grand Prix De Paris winner Erupt.