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Picture: Torquator Tasso won the Arc at odds of 72-1 last season Christophe Archambault (AFP Getty Images)


By James Stevens & Lewis Porteous (Racing Post) 

Frankie Dettori and Torquator Tasso will need to break a 45-year hoodoo to retain Sunday’s Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe after being on the receiving end of a nightmare draw in stall 18.
The final field and draw was revealed on Thursday and last year’s winner was given the tricky challenge of emulating Alleged’s first of two Arc wins in 1977 to retain the prize. In 2012, Orfevre was able to get within a neck from the same gate but the German-trained runner has drifted in the betting for his Arc defence following the allocation.
Dettori will partner Torquator Tasso and connections can at least draw inspiration from his memorable Arc win on Golden Horn in 2014, where he overcame stall 14.
Meanwhile, the draw was more favourable for leading contenders Alpinista, Westover and Luxembourg and they will line up for Sunday’s €5 million contest next to each other in stalls six, seven and eight.
Vadeni and Titleholder were subject to support in the betting after being allocated stalls two and ten respectively.
John and Thady Gosden’s two representatives were unlucky with their slots as Mostahdaf and Mishriff will emerge from stalls 16 and 17.
Mishriff, who will be partnered by William Buick for the first time, drifted to 28-1 (from 20) with bet365 but co-trainer Thady Gosden was upbeat on the chances of the three-time Group 1 winner.
“Obviously we’re drawn wider than ideal but, as we’ve seen before, it’s possible to get a good enough position given a bit of luck from a wide draw. We’ll just have to see how they break,” he said.
“Mishriff has come out of the Irish Champion [Stakes] in good form. The ground at Leopardstown was just a little bit tacky and holding for him. They’re due some rain at Longchamp but hopefully they don’t get as much as previous years and it doesn’t turn too soft or too tacky.
“He’s a horse with plenty of speed and the Longchamp mile and a half should suit him. He doesn’t necessarily want a stiff mile and a half but he’s won over that trip in Dubai.”
Gosden added of 50-1 chance Mostahdaf: “He took the race by the horns when winning the September Stakes and he quickened up pretty smartly. He wouldn’t want the ground going too deep but seems to be in good form. The Arc has always been under consideration and he’s a horse who improves throughout the year.”
Japan’s leading hope Titleholder is expected to make the running and will come from stall ten while the William Haggas-trained Alenquer will occupy the same stall 12 in which Torquator Tasso emerged from 12 months ago before causing an upset at 72-1.
Similar to last year’s winner, Alenquer is one of the outsiders of the 20 runners who made the cut on Thursday – La Parisienne, True Testament and Le Destrier failed to get in – but jockey Tom Marquand was hopeful he could outrun a general price of 100-1.
The jockey said: “It’s not the best draw in 12 and it’s not the worst. If you’re too low and don’t break as well as you want it can be a nightmare, so I guess it does give us a few options.
“He wants soft ground and it’s looking like a mile and a half is where he wants to be. His run in the Arc last year was more than respectable and he’s subsequently won a Group 1 on soft ground. If he was to bring his A game, hopefully he can be competitive.
“Arguably his best form has been on wet, soft ground and if there’s a big dump of rain, that would suit us. It’s tacky ground he doesn’t want.”
Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe runners and riders
1 Mishriff (17) William Buick
2 Torquator Tasso (18) Frankie Dettori
3 Mare Australis (19) Bauyrzhan Murzabayev
4 Sealiway (15) Mickael Barzalona
5 Alenquer (12) Tom Marquand
6 Deep Bond (5) Yuga Kawada
7 Broome (14) Wayne Lordan
8 Stay Foolish (20) Christophe Lemaire
9 Mostahdaf (16) Jim Crowley
10 Mendocino (1) Rene Piechulek
11 Titleholder (10) Kazuo Yokoyama
12 Bubble Gift (13) Olivier Peslier
13 Grand Glory (9) Maxime Guyon
14 Alpinista (6) Luke Morris
15 Vadeni (2) Christophe Soumillon
16 Al Hakeem (4) Cristian Demuro
17 Onesto (11) Stephane Pasquier
18 Westover (7) Rob Hornby
19 Do Deuce (3) Yutaka Take
20 Luxembourg (8) Ryan Moore
Arc verdict and 1-2-3 prediction
1 Vadeni
2 Luxembourg

3 Alpinista