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Racing: Japanese bid thwarted

Solemia denied Japan a first victory in the Qatar Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe as the filly got up in the last strides to beat Orfevre yesterday at Longchamp.

Everything appeared to have gone to plan for Orfevre, who carried the weight of a nation's hopes. Christophe Soumillon dropped the Far East challenger right out at the back, but he came cruising through in the straight and went at least two lengths clear of Solemia, even trading at 1-100 at one stage on the betting exchanges. However, Carlos Laffon-Parias' four-year-old showed incredible guts under Olivier Peslier to give the rider his fourth win in the race. Masterstroke was third. Camelot, Aidan O'Brien's 2000 Guineas and dual Derby winner, was given every chance by Frankie Dettori and briefly threatened but emptied out close home to finish seventh.

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