Rain would bring Ocovango into picture
Last Updated: 16/09/13 4:24pm
Ocovango (brown silks, far side) finishes third in the Niel
Connections of Ocovango would love the ground to turn heavy for the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe following his eyecatching trial run at Longchamp on Sunday.
The Andre Fabre-trained colt finished a close-up third to Kizuna and Ruler Of The World in the Prix Niel, in which he suffered significant interference a furlong and a half from home.
Ocovango had previously taken third spot behind stablemate Flintshire, who finished fourth in the Niel, in the Juddmonte Grand Prix de Paris. He was also an unlucky fifth in the Epsom Derby in June.
Ted Voute, racing manager for his owner, Prince Faisal, said: "We were absolutely delighted with him at the weekend.
"We are now praying for rain again - and lots of it - in the next three weeks.
"I talked to the Prince, who has talked to Andre, who said we now carry on to the Arc.
"As long as the ground comes right, I think he's got a pretty live chance."
Ocovango was ridden in the Prix Niel by Olivier Peslier, but Voute accepts the four-times Arc winner is likely to be retained by the Wertheimer brothers back at Longchamp on October 6.
Should that be the case, Fabre could again turn to Pierre-Charles Boudot, who has partnered Ocovango on his five other starts.
Voute said: "When you have horses with Andre Fabre you do what he says, so we'll have to see what happens with a jockey in the next three weeks.
"We'd obviously love to have him (Peslier), but the chances are he'll be riding for the Wertheimers.
"Either way, we would have no problems whatsoever if he (Boudot) rode in the Arc.
"He's a great jockey and a talented young man."