How To Pick The Winner In The Prix De L’Arc De Triomphe Betting
Last updated & tested: 2020-02-09
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There’s one horse race in France that eclipses all others in the minds of British and Irish punters; the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe. A whole Festival of racing has built upon around this iconic event – named after the great Paris landmark used for the victory parade in the wake of World War 1 ending. Looking at the betting for the Arc de Triomphe just isn’t enough if you want to pick the winner out. Favourites don’t always win, but sometimes of course they’re a good thing.
Of course, the Arc de Triomphe betting odds are a great indicator of your fancy’s chances, but there’s a little bit more to it than that. First of all, we’re going to take a look at the key factors that make an Arc winner and also assess what some great victors in this marquee race had achieved beforehand. When you consider all that, it should leave you better informed about the latest Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe betting.
Before we get started, just what is the Arc? It’s a Group 1 middle-distance race over 1m 4f at Longchamp held annually since 1920, though there was a break during World War 2 and a couple of wartime races at Le Tremblay (1943 and 1944). Renovations to its traditional home meant the 2016 and 2017 renewals were contested at Chantilly.
Geldings cannot run in the race, so never bet on one in the Arc de Triomphe betting, but colts can. Bookmakers pricing up ante post markets have been known to include geldings in their ante post betting, which is totally wrong. So make sure you check out if your selection is actually eligible to run, otherwise you have backed a loser before the event even takes place. Three-year-olds receive a weight-for-age allowance from older horses and there is a sex allowance for fillies or mares, so that definitely gives three-year-old females a distinct advantage over the boys. We’ll have more on that when we look at some of the great previous winners.
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What makes an Arc de Triomphe winner?
As noted above the weight-for-age allowance given to a three-year-old horse is likely to put them further up the Arc de Triomphe race betting than their elders. They have an advantage and that has proven to be so as only six winners from 1993 until the present day have been aged four or over.
That gives three-year-olds a winning percentage of more than 75 in the last quarter of a century. Fillies have a phenomenal recent record in the race landing six of the seven runnings between 2011 and 2017. There is a 50-50 split in age between three and four-year-olds, so it is the sex allowance as much as the weight-for-age to lookout for when you are considering backing a female horse in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe betting.
Tips for the Prix De L'Arc De Triomphe
- Age allowance — bet on age four or under
- The Group 1 Prix Vermeille is a great precursor
- The Irish Champion Stakes also provides insights
- Check out last year’s odds!
It can also be insightful to see what path some of the great modern winners have taken to the Arc. This first and foremost is a French race, so the Group 1 Prix Vermeille over the same course and distance at Longchamp that takes place in September is an obvious trial for fillies and mares. The Yorkshire Oaks is also females only at the Ebor Festival in York and worth a look if anything in the Arc de Triomphe betting ran in it.
Other obvious top-notch 1m 4f form for UK and Irish trained horses is the Epsom Derby and Irish equivalent at The Curragh – both for three-year-olds only – or the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot, which is open to that age group and up.
What’s curious is a number of successful Arc horses have run over 1m 2f on summer ground in best of British Isles events like the Coral-Eclipse at Sandown and the Juddmonte International at York. The Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown too has thrown up winners across the Channel, so the fact that horses can step up in trip on ground that will certainly have more give in it come the autumn is revealing.
And finally, this may sound obvious but – when looking at the betting for the Arc de Triomphe – it is always worth looking back at the previous year’s renewal to see how any horses that line up in it again got on. Given there have been seven dual winners of the Arc, and six of those delivered back-to-back successes, this should be an essential part of your punting strategy.
A detailed look at some modern great Arc winners
In order to further help you find the winner in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe betting, it can help you to identify the sort of profile needed for this great race by looking back at some famous recent winners. How did they warm up for the Arc? What path did they take towards Paris? Let’s delve right into racing history and learn more…
Breeding: Nathaniel x Concentric (Sadler’s Wells)
Trainer: John Gosden (UK)
Arc de Triomphe betting odds: 10/11F
To say Enable was fancied to win the 2017 renewal of the Arc at Chantilly – and that is a caveat that shouldn’t be forgotten in the annals of the race’s history – is a major understatement. As a recipient of both a weight-for-age and sex allowance from the older horses and the colts, she had everything terms wise in her favour.
There’s more than that, though, behind Enable’s sublime success. She also headed the Arc de Triomphe race betting because she had won four consecutive Group 1s at the trip. Having completed the Epsom and Irish Oaks double, she stepped out of taking on her own sex to trounce the boys in the King George at Ascot before dismantling the fillies and mares again in the Yorkshire Oaks. Enable was completely proven over 1m 4f.
Breeding: Galileo x Red Evie (Intikhab)
Trainer: Aidan O’Brien (Ireland)
l’Arc de Triomphe betting odds: 6/1
The most remarkable thing about the 2016 Arc wasn’t necessarily Found’s victory, but the fact that the master of Ballydoyle saddled an unprecedented 1-2-3 to take a clean sweep of the major prize money on offer. As with Enable above, the path taken by this older filly must be couched in terms of the race being held at Chantilly while Longchamp was redeveloped.
Found, who was a five-length ninth in the previous year’s renewal of the Arc, prepped for her second and successful crack at the contest by strangely enough finishing second in five consecutive races. Those were the Tattersalls Gold Cup at The Curragh, then the Coronation Cup at Epsom, Prince Of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot, Yorkshire Oaks and the Irish Champion Stakes.
Whether O’Brien intended it or not, Found alternated in each of these outings between a mile-and-a-quarter and the Arc trip. Sometimes she was narrowly beaten, other times ran on to take the runner-up spot with no chance of catching the winner. What mattered was she delivered on this big occasion to lead home a procession of Irish trained horses that may never be equalled.
Golden Horn (2015)
Breeding: Cape Cross x Fleche D’Or (Dubai Destination)
Trainer: John Gosden (UK)
Arc de Triomphe betting odds: 9/2
This mind sound a little bit audacious given how guarantee subsequent Arc winner Enable was to get the trip, but Golden Horn had just one previous run over 1m 4f in his life before going to Longchamp. That came when he won the Epsom Derby having earlier landed a key trial for the premier British Classic in the Dante Stakes at York.
Golden Horn then dropped back to 1m 2f for the Coral-Eclipse, but was second on his return to York when denied by a neck in the Juddmonte International. He went to the Arc with a win under his belt, however, after landing the Irish Champion Stakes – a length in front of the horse who would succeed him as victor in this great race, Found.
As a three-year-old, Golden Horn received weight-for-age from any older horses and tackled a dual Arc winner who we’ll discuss separately in a moment. It was a fine ride from Frankie Dettori, who in the later years of his magnificent career as a jockey treasures days like this one.
Treve (2013 and 2014)
Age: 3, 4
Breeding: Motivator x Trevise (Anabaa)
Trainer: Criquette Head-Maarek (France)
Arc de Triomphe betting odds: 9/2, 11/1
Yes, French trainers do win the Arc sometimes. Treve is the last horse to win back-to-back renewals of the race and took a very traditional domestic route to land the spoils first time in 2013. She captured the Prix de Diane at Chantilly before scoring over course and distance in the Prix Vermeillie. That put her spot on for the Arc where, with weight-for-age and the sex allowance she triumphed.
Treve’s bid to win back-to-back renewals was less than ideal on the prep front, however, as she amazingly didn’t taste victory in between her Longchamp successes. She went down by a narrow margin at the track on her reappearance and was then third in the Prince Of Wales at Royal Ascot and even more worryingly fourth in the Prix Vermeille.
All those runs did was increase the odds on Treve in the betting for the Arc de Triomphe second time around. The margin of victory was less than half the five lengths she had bolted up by 12 months earlier, but it was still an easy and classy victory. Treve then tried to make Arc history and land the hat-trick but, although winning all three of her outings as a five-year-old going in, she could only finish fourth in 2015 but beaten just 2 1/4 lengths.
Sea The Stars (2009)
Breeding: Cape Cross x Urban Sea (Miswaki)
Trainer: John Oxx (Ireland)
l’Arc de Triomphe betting odds: 4/6F
No list of recent Arc winners would be complete without mentioning the magnificent Sea The Stars. His debut when beaten a length in fourth in a Curragh maiden apart, John Oxx’s legend won all eight of his career outing before retirement and starting his stud career.
Like subsequent Arc hero Golden Horn, Sea The Star had just one race over the trip under his belt and that came when following-up on his 2000 Guineas win with victory in the Epsom Derby. Eclipse, Juddmonte International and Irish Champion success followed. If this is a well-travelled route to success at Longchamp, then this terrific middle-distance horse is a contributory factor.
Recap: What to look for in the Arc de Triomphe betting
Betting for the Arc de Triomphe will of course vary from year-to-year depending on what the horses entered have achieved and whether there are any significant withdrawals from the field at forfeit or final declaration stages. Given the fact that recent winners have been trained in the UK, Ireland and even Germany besides France, the Arc is obviously an early closing race for entries.
Ante post Arc de Triomphe betting odds will be available throughout most of the season with British bookmakers. If you take a long-term punt on horse, remember there are risks attached. You will not get the cover of non-runner no bet or the best odds guaranteed because the race is not one that takes place in the UK or Ireland.
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That doesn’t mean British bookies won’t offer these incentives to bet nearer the time when final declarations are known, however, so it’s worth tailoring your gambling strategy accordingly. Let’s summarise some of Arc de Triomphe race betting advice from above now, so you’ve got the main points recapped:
Remember, three-year-old horses get a weight-for-age allowance from their elders, while fillies and mares receive a sex allowance.
Always check the race terms to see what weight the horse you fancy will be carrying and how that compares to other prominent in the betting.
There are certain other Group 1 races, not necessarily over the same distance at the Arc, that are worth studying carefully to indicate form.
These can be in France, the UK or Ireland and may or may not be age bound to just three-year-olds. Previous renewals of the race can have an influence on the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe betting – if the winner is kept in training – as a horse winning it twice cannot be entirely discounted because that’s been done seven times.