Workforce Takes the Arc
The Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, or The Arc as it often referred to, is one of the most prestigious international racing events of the season. It is a Group 1 meeting for horses that are three-years-old and older, and is annually run at the Longchamp Racecourse in France. With a purse of $5.5 million, the race is amongst the richest in the world. Amongst its past winners are names such as Sea The Stars, Sea Bird and Zarkava. On Sunday, 3 October 2010, Paris came alive with racing action, as eighteen contenders thrust themselves out of the starting gates for the running of the 2010 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe.
Inaugurated in 1920, The Arc has become one of the elusive races that all owners and trainers hope to capture. And on Sunday the battle for supremacy provided spectators with a memorable and nail-biting event right to the last stride. Japan’s hopes were dashed when the brilliant Nakayama Festa was unable to hold onto his leading position down the straight. Nakayama Festa is a four-year-old horse, which had Masayoshi Ebina in the saddle on the day, and is trained by Yoshitaka Ninomiya. Carrying a tough 59.5 kilograms, Nakayama Festa delivered a dazzling performance and gave it his best, but did not have enough left to fight off the late charge by Workforce. Workforce, trained by Sir Michael Stoute and ridden by Ryan Moore, was carrying 56 kilograms, and managed to catch Nakayama Festa halfway down the home stretch. Both horses put forward their best performances, but Workforce was able to cross the finish line with a head before his Japanese contender. This provided Ryan Moore and Sir Michael Stoute with their first Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe victory, and a disappointing yet satisfying second place for the Japanese camp.
Workforce and Nakayama Fest were followed home in finishing order by Sarafina, Behkabad, Fame and Glory, Marinous, Victoire Pisa, Cavalryman, Liang Kay, Youmzain, Lope De Vega, Wiener Walzer, Cape Blanco, Timos, Duncan, Plumania, Midas Touch and Pouvoir Absolu. The trainers and jockeys of both Workforce and Nakayama Festa expressed their joy at the performances of their horses, with jockey Ebina stating that he would love to try and win The Arc on Nakayama Festa in the future. He gave praise to his efforts saying: "We didn't have the smoothest of trips, but that's racing. I think the prep race helped, because Nakayama Festa was nice and relaxed out there. I just want to thank the horse for his effort today."