Mishriff on track for Arc tilt after stunning International Stakes win at York

Mishriff could be lining up for a tilt at the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe after superbly claiming his first domestic Group One victory in the Juddmonte International Stakes at York.

Winner of over £10.5million in prize money, mainly due to his wins in the Saudi Cup and the Dubai Sheema Classic, the John and Thady Gosden-trained four-year-old added another £567,000 to the kitty with a blistering six-length success in the extended 10-furlong showpiece at the Ebor Festival.

Mishriff left the opposition standing in the closing stages under a confident ride by David Egan to execute a long-term plan by connections.

Alenquer was smartly away but Mac Swiney took up the running once the field settled down with Love third and Mishriff just behind.

There was little change in the order until the long straight where Mishriff (9/4 favourite) cruised into contention.

Once let down by Egan, the Prince Faisal-owned colt drew away, scoring impressively from Alenquer. Love was half a length adrift in third.

Mishriff had previously finished third in the Eclipse at Sandown and second in the King George at Ascot, but John Gosden felt the colt had his optimum conditions on the Knavesmire.

He said: "His first run back, he'd been freshened since his winter campaign and he was a little full of himself and got tired, blew up if you like, in the last furlong. He ran a great race in the King George, probably stretching his stamina in that race, but it was a lovely race.

"This is his ground, good ground, and I think a mile and a quarter is perfect for him.

"He's had this strange year where he raced in a truncated season last year, then he raced in the winter and we gave him a holiday, now he's run in the middle of summer.

"If I'm going to go deep into the autumn, I've got to take a pull with him, freshen him again through September, then you could look at either the Arc or the Champion Stakes and then you have races like the Breeders' Cup and the Japan Cup.

"He's having to run in sort of segments with holidays in between."

The Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe is contested over 12 furlongs, like the King George, but Gosden thinks the ParisLongchamp track presents less of a stamina test.

He said: "It's an easier mile and a half than Ascot. The stiff uphill from Swinley Bottom caught him out stamina-wise, but I don't want to see him running in deep, heavy ground.

"I think he's right up there (with the best I've trained). To win over a mile and a furlong on the dirt (in the Saudi Cup) and beat the Americans and then come here and do this, he's a super horse.

"He won a Sheema Classic against a Japanese champion, he's phenomenal. He's versatile, but this is probably his best distance and arguably perfect ground on the Knavesmire, right up his street."

Egan said: "I had it in the back of my mind how well he stays a mile and a quarter on a flat track. Getting him in a nice rhythm and relaxed was the key today.

"He did everything perfectly. We were in the exact spot - it couldn't have gone better. I wasn't sure how far clear I was at the line. He's a true champion and he's only getting better this season.

"I was going so comfortably three out. I had it in my mind I didn't want to quicken too far out, but he was going so easy he took me to the front.

"To do what he has done is phenomenal. He's a horse to be reckoned with now.

"This horse means everything to me. He's going to make my career, hopefully.

"I'm just so thrilled for the horse to be able to do it on UK soil. He's proved he can do it elsewhere. Some people had doubts he could do it here. I've won the lottery, literally.

"This is my best day at the race track. The money doesn't matter - it's all about the horse. Hopefully, there's more to come."

William Haggas was pleased with Alenquer's effort, but expects his charge to move back up in distance now.

He said: "Alenquer ran a very good race. He stayed on and wants further, but you can't criticise a run like that in a Group One race.

"He's a very nice, straightforward three-year-old who should develop into a very nice, straightforward four-year-old I hope.

"I suspect we'll go back up to a mile and a half, but we'll talk to the owner and see where we go.

"I don't know, but I suspect the Arc will be well in the mix."

Of fourth-placed Mohaafeth, the trainer added: "I was pleased with him, too. To me, it looked like he didn't get home.

"It looked like he was going to be second and was weak in the last furlong, so I definitely think we ought to explore dropping him back to a mile. We'll see.

"I've no doubt Mishriff will go for the Champion Stakes, and we've got Addeybb who will be on the battlefield for that if the ground is soft."