Jockey Luke Morris says star mare Alpinista has “filled out like a tank” ahead of her big date in Paris in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe.
Sir Mark Prescott’s popular grey, who landed a trio of Group One contests in Germany last year, has been deliberately kept quiet this season as she builds towards the main prize on October 2, live on Sky Sports Racing.
The general racing public has been treated to a public sighting of Alpinista just twice in 2022, with Morris steering her to victory in the Grand Prix Saint-Cloud and Yorkshire Oaks.
Her task at ParisLongchamp, for which she is 13/2 second favourite with Sky Bet, has been made a little easier with the news that William Haggas’ unbeaten star Baaeed will skip the race in favour of the Champions Stakes at Ascot.
Morris told Sky Sports Racing: “It would’ve been a great spectacle to see Baaeed go there and see him step into the unknown but from a personal point of view it was great to see Mr Haggas choose to go to Ascot.
“The last two years Sir Mark has campaigned Alpinista to absolute perfection. Every spot he has picked has gone perfectly. Fingers crossed that in Paris it falls the same way.
“Looking at the weather at the moment, hopefully it stays this way and we get decent ground because we feel she’s got more class on better ground. I’m hoping she can show exactly what she’s made of.”
Despite rarely getting the chance to sit on Alpinista at home, Morris has been kept well informed of her progress and the reports are all positive from Prescott’s team.
“Every Christmas I get pictures from Sir Mark of our signature horses and there’s a picture up in the gym of her as a three-year-old and a four-year-old,” Morris explained. “You can see physically how she’s developed. She hasn’t grown much but she’s really filled out like a tank now.
“She’s well put together and very able.
“She worked yesterday morning and they said she was super so fingers crossed all roads lead to Paris now.”
Mosse opts for La Parisienne over Delzangles’ Bubble Gift
Arc veteran Gerald Mosse admits he faced a “difficult” decision after opting to ride La Parisienne in next month’s Arc.
The 55-year-old, who won the race back in 1990 on Saumarez, has turned down the chance to get aboard Bubble Gift for regular training partner Mikel Delzangles.
“It’s the race you don’t want to miss,” Mosse told Sky Sports Racing. “It’s probably one of the last ones I’m going to ride.
“It’s a difficult move for me because I ride a lot of horses for Mikel Delzangles but I spoke to him and he really understood.
“Bubble Gift is a top horse but I can ride only one.
“La Parisienne has shown something really special and she’s young and coming at the right time.
“She’s already proven in a Group One race and has been really knocking on the door. Hopefully the ground is going to be a bit softer because she will be even better.”