€380,000 ARC de Gheest: Highfield, Princess of Yorkshire

7 August 2022

Gheest 22 Highfield Princess

Photo scoopdyga.com

Sunday, August 7, 2022, Hippodrome of Deauville-La Touques (Calvados). – The time the winner Highfield Princess (Night of Thunder) took to win the €380,000 100th ARC Prix Maurice de Gheest (Gr1), i.e. 1'15''30 at the end of the 1,300m/6.5f, leading practically from start to finish, is the best in the race since 2013. With three furlongs under 11'', either clocked by the eventual winner or the Japanese raider King Hermes (Lord Kanaloa), it was indeed a tough race in which only the toughest could prevail. King Hermes went sideways first, which only underlines Highfield Princess’s merit. She’s a French-bred mare unsold at £29,000 at Tattersalls as a yearling when consigned by the Camp Bénard Stud Farm, where Trainers House Enterprises, representing the Fairley family from Yorkshire, bred her.

Trained by John Quinn, also in the North of England, the 5-year-old mare is a recent recruit in the ranks of elite sprinters, and she was offered at 10/1 across the Channel after finishing sixth in the Platinum Jubilee Stakes (Gr1) at Royal Ascot, at even lower odds: she had just won her first Group 2 by almost three lengths over 6 furlongs at York...

A good finisher this time, Minzaal (Mehmas) took second place at almost a length after having radically failed at Ascot, like the winner, having also previously finished third to the winner at York, where Garrus, a remarkable third at Deauville today, finished fourth...

The York form, destroyed at Ascot, held again on Deauville’s flat straight.

None of the three horses trained in France at the start of the race finished in the top seven.

It should be noted that the Australian Artorius (Flying Artie) finished in sixth place after pulling up early at the rear and that the favourite Perfect Power (Ardad) only travelled by the field without ever throwing any noticeable challenge.