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Free Eagle connections may now rethink Arc

By Ashley Iveson

Connections of Free Eagle are keen to let the dust settle on his controversial defeat in Saturday's Irish Champion Stakes before committing to future targets.

The four-year-old moved menacingly towards the front in the closing stages of the Leopardstown showpiece before being badly bumped by winner Golden Horn.

Found eventually relegated Free Eagle to third and the placings remained unaltered after a stewards' inquiry, leaving trainer Dermot Weld and owners Moyglare Stud to reflect on what might have been.

Moyglare's breeding advisor Fiona Craig said: "We obviously have mixed emotions. He ran a very good race, giving 7lb to a champion and a Derby winner in Golden Horn, but it was desperately disappointing at the time.

"Who knows whether the result would have been different? What we do know is our horse wouldn't have gone down without a fight.

"He was trained for the race, he was coming with his challenge and was knocked sideways. It's just so disappointing he didn't get the chance to fight out the finish."

The Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe has been Free Eagle's end-of-season target for a while, but Craig hinted there could be a rethink in light of wonder-mare Treve's jaw-dropping display in Sunday's Prix Vermeille.

"He's come out of the race fine and in one piece, which is the main thing, and we'll have to figure out where we go next," she said. The Arc has always been the plan, but there looks to be a pretty immovable object there in the form of Treve."

Belfast Telegraph


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