Declan McDonogh drove Maarek between horses and nailed Catcall on the wire to win the Qatar Prix de l'Abbaye de Longchamp (Fr-I) Oct. 6 at Longchamp.
The race was the first of seven group I races on a nine-race card anchored by the Qatar Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe (Fr-I), Europe's marquee middle-distance contest.
Lisbunny Syndicate's Maarek settled near the back of field before spearing his way through rivals inside the final furlong to win his first group I race n 1,000-meter (about five-furlong) contest. Time was :57.50.
French group II winner Catcall, who spurted from midfield to lead, held on for second, and Hamza was third.
Trained by Barry Lalor for owner Lisbunny Syndicate, Maarek entered off a win in the Dubai International Airport World Trophy (Eng-III) at about five furlongs Sept. 21 at Newbury. The 6-year-old Pivotal gelding took his record to 11 wins, including the 2012 QIPCO British Champions Sprint Stakes (Eng-II), five seconds, and two thirds from 33 career starts.
Maarek was bred in Great Britain by New England Stud and P. J. and P. M. Vela out of the group III-placed stakes winner Ruby Rocket, by Indian Rocket.