St Leger Second Arrest To Return Next Season

James Mackie | @JMackieRacing


The John & Thady Gosden trained Arrest had to settle for second on Saturday at Doncaster in the final Classic event of the 2023 flat season and will not be seen again this season, but will return as a four year old.

Arrest on debut last year at Sandown over 7f finished behind the exciting Nostrum back in third showing good ability, he then stepped up to a mile at Sandown and got off the mark beating Desert Order close home.

Then sent to Ffos Las to have a prep run before heading over to France he confronted soft in the going for the first time and still went on to bolt up, with the second and third since franking the form.

Arrest himself gave that form line a boost when last seen stepping up to 1m2f in France on heavy ground and finishing a head second to Dubai Mile for Charlie Johnston.

Making his three year old debut up in trip at Chester in the Group Three Chester Vase, he put himself firmly in the derby picture when bolting up by close to seven lengths.

With all systems go to the Derby and his best form on slower ground, the quick conditions went against him and it was obvious a long way out that Frankie Dettori was not happy on him.

Underperforming again at Royal Ascot in the Group Two King Edward VII Stakes on good to firm ground, the team knew he was very ground dependent and waited for an opportunity where the ground was on the slow side.

He got that at Newbury when bolting up in the Group Three Geoffrey Freer Stakes and also the step up in trip bought more improvement.

This saw him all systems go for the Group One St Leger and going off the 11/4 favourite he finished a good second to the Aidan O'Brien trained Continuous.

Connections have now made the decision to put him away for the rest of the season, but have stated he will be back next term as a four year old.

(Credit ATR) Barry Mahon, racing manager for owners Juddmonte, said: “I was delighted and thought he ran a great race. I was more disappointed for Frankie than anything because it would have been lovely for him to have a fairytale ending in the last Classic of the year, but it wasn’t to be.

“The horse ran a brilliant race and Frankie was very complimentary about him afterwards and said what a good horse he thinks he’ll be next year. I think we’ve plenty to look forward to with him.

“I think that seemed to be the consensus with John and Thady (Gosden) and Frankie after the race, that we’d put him away for the year now and he’ll be a nice horse next year.

“He still has a lot of strengthening to do – he’s a tall, lean horse and he’ll strengthen up from three to four. We’ll look forward to the spring next year.

“We know he likes to get his toe in a little bit and once there’s a little bit of juice in the ground he’ll compete in all those big mile-and-a-half races next year.”