Los Angeles (AFP) - Enable became the first horse to win the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe and the Breeders' Cup Turf in the same year on Saturday as she held off Magical to triumph at Churchill Downs.
"She conquered America! She's done it," ecstatic jockey Frankie Dettori said after Enable showed all her heart in holding off Magical in a thrilling stretch duel, winning the $4 million race by three-quarters of a length.
Eight prior Arc winners had come to America to try for the 1 1/2-mile Turf, the first Dancing Brave 32 years ago. All had failed.
Enable, who won the 2017 Arc as a three-year-old, completed the unprecedented double despite a nightmare start to her four-year-old campaign that didn't get underway until September thanks to a leg injury.
Her second Arc triumph in October came after just one prep race in September -- and trainer John Gosden said she'd battled fever in between.
"She's been very brave, mentally very strong to get herself here," Gosden said.
Dettori said Enable's "wheels were spinning" early on a turf course softened by mid-week rain.
He purposely kept her wide seeing the better ground and as they headed into the straight, he said, "she found another gear".
Enable and Magical -- who split horses under jockey Ryan Moore -- quickly went clear, Enable finally taking control as they entered the final furlong.
Sadler's Joy was a distant third -- nine lengths back.
As they galloped out after the finish, Dettori and Moore briefly clasped hands.
"It was a wonderful, wonderful stretch run between two great fillies and two great jockeys," Gosden said. "I thought coming into the straight when Ryan (Moore) came up on her, we had a race on our hands. She showed enormous courage to go and win."