Dylan Thomas survived a 35min enquiry to win the Prix de L’Arc de Triomphe and cement his place as Europe’s best middle-distance horse on Sunday 7 October.
Ridden by Kieren Fallon (pictured), for whom this was a second Arc triumph, the four-year-old son of Danehill held off a fast-finishing Youmzain to give his trainer, Aiden O’Brien, a first Arc victory.
The team were perhaps lucky to keep the race — French rules concerning interference during a race are far stricter than in Britain — but there can be no doubt that the best horse won.
For Dylan Thomas, who has won all his six outings under Kieren Fallon, this was a sixth Group One triumph, and this year he has also won the Prix Ganay at Longchamp, the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot and a second successive Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown.
He is likely to finish his racing career in the Breeders’ Cup Turf later this month at Monmouth Park, New Jersey, but he will not be ridden by Fallon, whose trial starts at the Old Bailey today.
He, along with five others, are accused of conspiracy to defraud betting exchange punters.
Authorized, the Epsom Derby winner, pulled hard and never looked comfortable under Frankie Dettori. The best British finisher was Youmzain, who came within a head of giving former England footballer Mick Channon a first Arc winner.
Don’t miss Horse & Hound’s full report from Longchamp in this Thursday’s magazine (11 October, ’07)