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Enable to begin 2020 campaign in Coral-Eclipse Stakes at Sandown

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John Gosden’s superstar mare Enable is set to make her seasonal debut during Sunday’s Coral-Eclipse Stakes at Sandown (3.35pm).

The six-year-old has been kept in training by owner-breeder Khalid Abdullah after she came up just short in her bid for a record-breaking third Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe victory last October.

History in Paris remains very much on the daughter of Nathaniel’s agenda in 2020, and just as it did 12 months ago, the journey will begin with a Group 1 outing in Surrey.

Enable working on the Rowley Mile under Frankie Dettori, September 2019 (37461461)
Enable working on the Rowley Mile under Frankie Dettori, September 2019 (37461461)

Enable became only the third of her sex to win the mile-and-a-quarter showpiece in 2019, and the owner’s racing manager Teddy Grimthorpe is hopeful of a repeat.

“Everything has gone to plan. She had a good workout recently and John is pleased,” he said.

“She is six years old now and so she takes a little bit of getting fit. John is keen to build her up slowly.

“The main thing is she is still very enthusiastic. She wants to know why she isn’t going out first all of the time, so the signs are very positive.

“The Eclipse got her off to a great start last year and that is why it makes sense to go back again.

“It is no secret we are going for the Arc again, and we are working backwards from that.”

Victory on Sunday would chalk up an 11th top level triumph for Enable, but she does appear to have some serious competition.

The opposition is likely to be spearheaded by Ghaiyyath, who impressed last month when winning the Group 1 Coronation Cup at the Rowley Mile in course-record time.

Newmarket-based trainer Charlie Appleby said of his five-year-old: “I’m very pleased with him. Obviously since the Coronation he’s had an easy spell.

“We’re dealing with a different horse this year, to be honest, post-race he’s taking it a lot better than he did last year.

“Obviously when you put up those big performances it’s going to take something out of you – but he’s taking his racing well this year, and it’s all systems go for the Eclipse.”