Arkle (19 April 1957 – 31 May 1970) was a famous Irish Thoroughbred racehorse. A bay gelding by Archive out of Bright Cherry, he was the grandson of the unbeaten (in 14 races) flat racehorse and prepotent sire Nearco. Arkle was born at Ballymacoll Stud, County Meath, by Mrs Mary Alison Baker of Malahow House, near Naul, County Dublin. He was named after the mountain Arkle in Sutherland, Scotland that bordered the Duchess of Westminster’s Sutherland estate. Owned by Anne Grosvenor, Duchess of Westminster, he was trained by Tom Dreaper at Greenogue, Kilsallaghan in County Meath, Ireland, and ridden during his steeplechasing career by Pat Taaffe.
At 212, his Timeform rating is the highest ever awarded to a steeplechaser. Only Flyingbolt, also trained by Dreaper, had a rating anywhere near his at 210. Next on their ratings are Sprinter Sacre on 192 and then Kauto Star and Mill House on 191. Despite his career being cut short by injury, Arkle won three Cheltenham Gold Cups, the Blue Riband of steeplechasing, and a host of other top prizes.
Arkle is a mountain in Sutherland, situated in the far north-west corner of the Scottish Highlands. Like its sister Foinaven, the mountain is made up of glistening white Cambrian quartzite, laid down around 530 million years ago on an uneven basement of much older Lewisian gneiss. The quartzite, and the Torridonian sandstone which makes up many of the other mountains in the area, have been dissected by rivers and glaciers, leaving a series of isolated peaks, such as Suilven, Quinag and Stac Pollaidh, standing above the "knock and lochan" landscape of small hills and lakes that is typical of the Lewisian gneiss.
Arkle, the Irish thoroughbred racehorse was named after the mountain.