Danedream unable to defend Arc crown

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Danedream will be unable to defend her crown in this Sunday’s Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe at Longchamp after she was scratched from the race this morning following the outbreak of a serious equine disease at her base in Germany.

News broke yesterday evening that Cologne racecourse, where Peter Schiergen’s mare is stabled, had been dramatically placed into quarantine.

The track has been shut down for three months after a horse tested positive for a serious equine infection of the blood. All horses based at Cologne cannot leave the racecourse, including Danedream, a brilliant winner of this weeken’ds  feature 12 months ago.

France Galop’s media manager Julien Pescatore said: “There is a quarantine period of 90 days, and for that reason Danedream will not be able to run in the Arc. It is really sad that she will not be able to run, but there is nothing we can do about it.”

Eighteen horses, including Investec Derby winner Camelot, remain in contention.

Camelot’s trainer Aidan O’Brien also has Imperial Monarch, St Nicholas Abbey, Ernest Hemingway and Robin Hood.

Andre Fabre, who already has seven Arc victories to his name, has two representatives in Prix Foy runner-up Meandre and Masterstroke, owned by Godolphin’s French section. The Aga Khan’s Shareta, who was second to Danedream 12 months ago, showed her well-being when winning the Prix Vermeille over the course and distance recently. Her trainer Alain de Royer-Dupre also has Reliable Man in the lien-up

Sir Michael Stoute’s Sea Moon, carrying the Frankel colours of owner Khalid Abdullah, has also been declared.

BetVictor, who are refunding ante post bets on Danedream, now make Japanese raider Orfevre their 3/1 favourite in a race in which their are offering enhanced place terms of 1/4 odds 1,2,3,4 from today.

Spokesperson Charlie McCann: “It is very disappointing that Danedream can’t defend her Arc crown and in the circumstances it is unfair on punters to be out of pocket in the circumstances; let’s hope the disease doesn’t spread. She was popular in the antepost lists after her King George win and, having broken the track record last year, she must have gone close at the weekend.”

Stan James are another form that have decided to return all ante post bets placed on Danedream and have seen good support for Camelot over the past few days.

The firm’s Rory Jiwani said, “Danedream’s absence is a bitter blow to the race and I’m sure punters will appreciate our decision to refund their antepost bets. Japanese raider Orfevre is now the 3/1 clear favourite after winning the Prix Foy last month with John Gosden’s Nathaniel next best at 7/2.

“Camelot was 6/1 yesterday morning but that was soon snapped up and Aidan O’Brien’s star is now 4/1 after Danedream’s withdrawal. With Snow Fairy also out, Prix Vermeille winner Shareta is now the leading filly at 15/2. French Derby and Prix Niel hero Saonois is a 9/1 chance with connections set to supplement him on Thursday for the big race.”

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