Royal Ascot Spotlight: Treve could be license to print
Treve launched herself onto the world stage with one of the most impressive Arc de Triomphe victories of all time last autumn and dreams of getting the French heroine to Ascot have been circling wistfully ever since.
Sam Foster profiles one of Royal Ascot’s biggest draws ahead of the prestigious five-day meeting next week.
Criquette Head-Maarek’s star was still under the radar despite arriving at the post of her third career run in the Prix de Dinae Longines unbeaten. However, after posting an emphatic four length success at her first time of asking at the highest level it was clear her returning price of 11/1 wouldn’t be available for some time to come.
That performance was backed up with an equally authoritative success in the Qatar Prix Vermeille at Longchamp which led to the daughter of Motivator being sent off clear second favourite in the Arc behind the runner-up of last year, Orfevre.
However, the Japanese sensation was to be denied once more as the French filly stormed through to win by five lengths for an emotional success for connections.
Season so far:
The naysayers were quick to blow off their steam when Treve’s much anticipated return to the track in Longchamp’s Prix Ganay finished in the narrowest of failures but the exploits of the winner since that day have reflected well on the Arc winner.
Cirrus Des Aigles has returned to his fearsome best this season with that verdict over Treve the first of what was to be a quick-fire hat-trick of victories at the very highest level.
Owner Sheikh Joaan Al Thani’s retained jockey, Frankie Dettori, took over for only the second time from Christophe Soumillion and although the new rider was in the saddle for the filly’s only defeat there is little doubt Treve will be at the forefront of all of the biggest middle distance pictures this term.
The stable have been performing well, however, their season will be largely judged on Treve’s.
Treve has never raced in England but could be set for a double visit this summer with Head-Maarek stating that the intention was to return to Berkshire next month for the King George.
There seems to be little concern from the French camp over their horse’s ability to handle the track and royal fanfare which is understandable given the stables numerous successful raids to Britain in the past.
Hydrogen or Frankel?
Treve has tasted defeat on only one occasion, failing where many top horses have done in the past when a short neck second to the evergreen Cirrus Des Aigles on his seasonal reappearance.
Aside from that run – which looks less and less disappointing as Corine Barande-Barbe’s star has racked up two more Group 1s since – the four-year-old has been flawless, culminating in last season’s breathtaking Arc De Triomphe victory where the daughter of Motivator fully justified favouritism in one of the hottest renewals for some time. She’s the real deal.
Immediately after Treve’s comeback defeat the cynics were quick to denounce the French filly as worse than last year but the performances of the race-fit conqueror since have largely torpedoed those doubts.
Treve is currently 4/6 for the Prince of Wales’s Stakes and despite having to face a field with significant strength and depth that could be an incredibly generous price come next Wednesday considering the favourite was head and shoulders above all last term.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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