(Reuters) - Enable battled from behind to win the $4 million Breeders’ Cup Turf in thrilling fashion at Churchill Downs on Saturday, becoming the first horse to win this race and the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe in the same year.
The back-to-back Arc winning filly, a 4-5 bet, edged 10-1 Magical, who came in second, and 37-1 Sadler’s Joy, who finished a distant third in the 1 1/2-miles race.
The British-trained four-year-old has now won 10 of her last 11 starts and continues to make a case for being the best race horse in the world.
Enable spent most of Saturday’s race in the middle of the pack before jockey Frankie Dettori swung her far outside after the final turn in what was ultimately a two-horse race with fellow filly Magical.
The win ended doubts about Enable’s health after she missed most of the year with a leg injury before returning to win the Arc last month.
“Everyone knows she’s had a difficult year,” said trainer John Gosden, who won the Breeders’ Cup Classic with Raven’s Pass in 2008.
“She didn’t quite come here in the form that she would have come last year but she’s done it,” he said after the filly’s first race on U.S. soil.
“It was a wonderful, wonderful stretch run between two great fillies and two great jockeys. She did it today with sheer guts and determination.”
Dettori was elated after the win, raising his fists in triumph.
“She conquered America! She’s done it,” he said during a TV interview with NBC while still on Enable’s back. “I have no words for how brilliant she is.”
Dettori said he swung Enable out wide after the final turn in the hope of finding firmer footing down the stretch, a strategy that worked perfectly.
“Her wheels were spinning around the bend so I took a right turn to get her on fresh ground where I knew she’d be comfortable,” he said.
“I went for the better ground and she found another gear. She’s amazing.”
Reporting by Rory Carroll, editing by Ed Osmond