St Leger hero Continuous and German Derby winner Fantastic Moon have both been supplemented for Sunday’s Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe at ParisLongchamp.
Continuous, trained by Aidan O’Brien, landed the final British Classic of the season with a two-and-three-quarter-length victory in Doncaster’s St Leger, a performance that sparked conversations about his late inclusion in the Arc.
Those plans have come to fruition and he will fly the flag for Coolmore in the ParisLongchamp Group One, where he will be joined by a German contender in Sarah Steinberg’s Fantastic Moon.
The German Derby victor took a key Arc trial in the Prix Niel, a Group Two run over the course and distance, but was ruled out of the big race on account of the likely occurrence of soft ground in Paris on Sunday.
Autumn in France has been warm and dry so far, however, causing connections to set aside Japan Cup and Breeders’ Cup aims and supplement their Sea The Moon colt for a shot at the Arc.
“We made the decision in the morning, he worked very well yesterday and he handled the workout very well,” said Lars-Wilhelm Baumgarten of owners Liberty Racing.
“We continue to hope for sunshine and good ground conditions for him to be able to call up his best form.
“We thought long and hard about which of the races would be the best for him and with the owners and Sarah, we decided against the long trip to the United States or to Japan.
“Fantastic Moon should continue to run for Liberty Racing in 2024 so we’ll take advantage of the beautiful fall in Paris, he is a horse that has recovered very quickly after the last run.
“It is a big adventure for our 22 shareholders from Germany, we have one shareholder who won the Arc with Danedream and we have the president of German racing in the syndicate.
“It’s his first investment in a horse, he is the president of Deutscher Galopp and his first horse is an Arc starter – it is amazing.”
The field is currently headed by Jean-Claude Rouget’s Ace Impact, the unbeaten market leader, with Owen Burrows’ Hukum the second favourite.