Enable will face a trio of Aidan O’Brien-trained runners when she bids for an unprecedented third victory in the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Qipco Stakes at Ascot on Saturday.
John Gosden’s brilliant mare was narrowly denied in her bid to become the first three-time winner of the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe last season – and has been kept in training as a six-year-old with the primary objective of putting that right in Paris in October.
However, she first has the chance to make history this weekend, having become only the third dual King George winner – after Dahlia (1973 and 1974) and Swain (1997 and 1998) – when getting the better of a pulsating duel with Crystal Ocean 12 months ago.
Following a pleasing comeback run behind the front-running Ghaiyyath in the Coral-Eclipse at Sandown, Enable is a hot favourite to claim yet another major victory in the hands of Frankie Dettori.
With Gosden deciding against running Enable’s stable companion Fanny Logan, each of her three rivals hail from Ballydoyle, with both trainers bidding to win the race for a fifth time.
Having been responsible for six of the eight entries for the race earlier in the week, O’Brien has whittled his team down to three, with Japan seemingly the stable’s first string under Ryan Moore.
Last year’s King Edward VII Stakes, Grand Prix de Paris and Juddmonte International winner was disappointing on his first start of 2020 in the Prince of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot, but raised his game to finish only a head behind Enable at Sandown three weeks ago.
O’Brien has also declared Anthony Van Dyck and Sovereign – winners of the Investec Derby at Epsom and the Irish Derby respectively last season. Oisin Murphy has been booked to partner Anthony Van Dyck, with William Buick taking the ride on Sovereign.