It will be a busy weekend for Chapple-Hyam, who could be in charge of big-race challengers in three countries. Ground permitting, Turtle Island may contest the Celebration Mile at Goodwood on Saturday, while his Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe candidate, White Muzzle, is a definite starter in the Grand Prix de Deauville the following day.
White Muzzle was a close second to Urban Sea in last year's Arc, and Chapple- Hyam is increasingly confident that the colt is reaching his peak at the perfect time. 'He was an autumn horse last year and he's really starting to come to himself now,' the trainer said. 'He was unlucky in the King George (when runner-up to King's Theatre) and he's improved since then. There's only ever been one race in our mind anyway, and that's the Arc. He's been trained for it like a French horse.'
Recent impressive victories by Only Royale, in the Yorkshire Oaks, and Hernando, in a Group race at Deauville, have put them shoulder-to- shoulder with White Muzzle at the front of Arc betting. Chapple-Hyam, though, is unperturbed. 'They were good performances,' he said, 'but we've beaten them before, so why shouldn't we beat them again?'
Perhaps the most significant news though, is from Ascot. During the Festival meeting there on 24 September, the course announced, the family entertainments will include a carousel and dodgems behind the main grandstand.
Dodgems at Ascot. Now what price Shergar for the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes?Reuse content