Enable Retires, Will Visit Kingman

Enable bows out with 11 Group 1 wins | Scoop Dyga


Prince Khalid Abdullah's superstar mare Enable (GB) (Nathaniel {Ire}–Concentric {GB}, by Sadler's Wells) has been retired from racing and will visit Kingman (GB) at Banstead Manor Stud next season.

“After consulting her trainer John Gosden and his racing manager Teddy Grimthorpe, Prince Khalid has decided that Enable will be retired from racing and will now join the Juddmonte broodmare band to be covered by Kingman in 2021,” said Juddmonte Chief Executive Officer Douglas Erskine Crum.

During an illustrious five-season career, Enable raced 19 times, winning 11 Group 1 races, including the Oaks, Irish Oaks, the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe twice and three victories in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth S. In her 19 starts she accrued record earnings for a European-trained horse of £10.7-million.

Teddy Grimthorpe said, “She has brought so much joy to everyone who has been involved with her. Her elegance and forceful personality have been nurtured by John and his team at Clarehaven, especially by Imran [Shahwani] who has looked after her with such calm and devotion. In her, Frankie found a willing partner to execute her ability on the racecourse. Her CV withstands the closest of inspections. Very few can match what she has given to racing.”

Enable: A Juddmonte Homegrown Great

A fourth generation homebred for Khalid Abdullah, Enable is the fifth foal out of the Andre Fabre-trained French stakes-placed Concentric and from the first crop of the G1 King George VI and Queen Elizabeth S. and G1 Coral-Eclipse winner Nathaniel. She made just one start at two, taking a mile Newcastle maiden by 3 3/4 lengths, and soon established her superiority among her generation at three. Re-bounding from a season-opening third in a Newbury conditions race, Enable took the Listed Cheshire Oaks and would not be beaten thereafter for more than two years. She pulverized her Oaks opposition by five lengths and was similarly impressive when taking the Irish Oaks by 5 1/2 lengths. She faced older males next out when taking the first of her three King Georges, and handled older mares next out when taking the G1 Yorkshire Oaks prior to her first Arc victory at Chantilly, where she had the likes of Cloth Of Stars (Ire), Ulysees (Ire), Order Of St George (Ire), Winter (Ire), Zarak (Fr) and Capri (Ire) in her wake.

Connections soon revealed that Enable would stay in training at four with a tilt at an Arc defense the top priority, but fate did its best to intervene, with a minor injury sidelining Enable for much of the season. She got going only in September with a defeat of Crystal Ocean (Ire) off an 11-month layoff in Kempton's G3 September S.-a satisfactory but less than ideal preparation for Europe's great race. No matter, though: with the Arc back at its traditional home at the revamped ParisLongchamp, Enable and Frankie Dettori put on a show to remember, hitting the line a short neck the better of the flying 3-year-old filly Sea Of Class (Ire). Having just gotten warmed up for the season, Enable jetted across the Atlantic to Churchill Downs for the GI Breeders' Cup Turf, where she justified favouritism with a three-quarter length victory over that evergreen Group 1 winner Magical (Ire), with the following year's Arc winner Waldgeist (GB) and the prior year's Turf winner Talismanic further down the field.

Few would have blamed Khalid Abdullah at this stage should he have chosen to send Enable to the paddocks in anticipation of racing her offspring, but to the delight of racing fans the Juddmonte team soon announced that the mare would remain in training at five and go for an unprecedented third Arc win. The stage looked set last fall, with Enable having extended her win streak to include scores in the Coral-Eclipse, King George and Yorkshire Oaks. The rainfall that appeared in Paris ahead of last year's Arc did little to dissuade most that Enable would enter the history books-she had already won Group 1s on soft going, of course-and victory looked almost a foregone conclusion when the mare stormed to the lead with 300 metres to run. But at the same time as the very soft ground began to blight her brilliance, a true mile-and-a-half Group 1 horse in Waldgeist was flying down the middle of the course, and he snatched the lead with just 50 metres to go, with Enable settling for second in an excellent effort.

History had spoken and it was not to be for Enable, and the Arc would go on without a treble winner. Or would it? Weeks after the mare's first defeat since the first race of her 3-year-old campaign, the team at Juddmonte once again stunned the racing world with the supremely sporting decision that Enable would give it another try in 2020.

Enable's followers could be forgiven for being discouraged by a season-opening second to Ghaiyyath (Ire) in the Coral-Eclipse, but as the season wore on, the 6-year-old mare rounded into fitness and Ghaiyyath justified that victory with a career-best score in the Juddmonte International. Albeit against just two rivals, Enable recorded another historic treble when taking her third King George, but that accomplishment stayed largely in the shadows of what could come at ParisLongchamp 10 weeks later. Choosing to bypass a clash with the new 3-year-old filly wonder Love (Ire) in the Yorkshire Oaks, Team Enable opted for the warm up that had worked so well in 2018 and again went the route of the September S., which she won by seven lengths.

This year's Arc was framed as a clash between Enable and Love, but as the week leading into the race wore on far more drama unfolded than could have been anticipated. Biblical rainfall in Paris quickly deteriorated the course, and three days out Love with withdrawn. As Longchamp continued to dissolve into a quagmire, Love's four stablemates set for the Arc joined her on the sidelines after becoming embroiled in a case of feed contamination. As the ground turned heavy, the most testing Enable had ever faced, the pace fell out of the race with that unfortunate withdrawal of Sovereign (Ire) and Serpentine (Ire).

While Enable put in her typical valiant effort without ever looking like winning in trying conditions, her first and only off- the-board finish takes none of the shine off her illustrious record.

Dettori Hails 'One of the Great Mares of Our Generation'

Speaking in an emotional interview on At The Races on Monday, Dettori paid tribute to “one of the great mares of our generation.”

“Lord Grimthorpe rang me last night,” he said. “Obviously I shed a tear as I was a bit emotional. I went to see her this morning. I accept the decision and she doesn't owe anyone anything. It has been a great journey for 3 1/2 years. She has touched my heart and has been one of the great mares of our generation. She has won 11 Group 1s and has simply been amazing.”

Dettori described Enable's 2017 Arc win as her best performance, while also giving note to her second King George win, in which she prevailed in a stirring stretch drive from Crystal Ocean, and the Oaks.

“The best performance was the first Arc,” Dettori said. “I knew we had the race won by the chateau in Chantilly, she was just in unbeatable form that day. The King George against Crystal Ocean stands out–she had every chance of throwing in the towel and she didn't. The Oaks would be the other standout race as that is when she first really burst on to the scene.”

Dettori said he felt her Arc run was her last in the race's immediate aftermath.

“After walking back in after the Arc I was trying to enjoy it, as I knew in my heart it was going to be her last race,” he said. “It is a tough task after finishing sixth in the Arc to have one more dance, so I half-expected this decision.

“It would have been unfair on her. Maybe she is now telling us something, but she has left the game in one piece and luckily for me she is still in Newmarket, so I can still see her. I will go feed her Polos at the stud. I've been begging John to put me on her one last time in a morning so I can give her my last goodbye.”

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