Arazi worked well on the Chantilly training grounds yesterday morning and pleased Boutin who will also saddle Shanghai, the French 2,000 Guineas winner, in the same race.
After the chestnut trailed in eighth in the Kentucky Derby four months ago, Boutin sought to restore Arazi's reputation at Royal Ascot but the colt could finish only fifth to Brief Truce in the St James's Palace Stakes. Steve Cauthen, Arazi's regular rider, will have the mount at Longchamp.
Another morning gallop, this time at Newmarket by User Friendly, increased prospects of the Oaks winner running in the St Leger at Doncaster a week next Saturday. The filly was put through her paces over 10 furlongs by George Duffield.
Clive Brittain, her trainer, said: 'She went very well and we are completely happy with her. The only thing that would stop us going to Doncaster is very dry ground. She will have one more serious work-out to bring her to a peak for the big race.'
Connections must decide whether to pay a supplementary fee of pounds 25,000 to enter the year's final Classic. Brittain said: 'It's very likely she'll be entered, but we're in no rush to make up our minds. The deadline is not until noon on Saturday.'
Reports of User Friendly's well-being prompted strong betting support. Ladbrokes reported plenty of interest and clipped her odds to 6-4 from 7-4, easing Sonus to 6-1 and Assessor to 10-1. The firm will return stakes on User Friendly if she is not entered. The Tote is offering Britain's filly User Friendly at 13-8, returning stakes on any non-runner.
Early arrivals at Epsom yesterday would have been able to see David Elsworth walking the course with top Japanese jockey Yokio Okabe, a surprise booking for Shrewd Partner in the Chalk Farm Handicap.
After Yoshiki Akazawa, the colt's owner, had asked that Okabe should have the ride, the four-time champion jockey of Japan took over from Richard Quinn.
Okabe rode a perfect race on Shrewd Partner, making the running into the straight and then holding off the late challenge of the favourite, Glide Path. It was the jockey's first success in Europe. 'It's a wonderful track and I can see why the Derby is such a great race,' said Okabe, who returns to Japan on Saturday.Reuse content