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Author Topic: Breeders' Cup World Championships: Sunday notes  (Read 1290 times)
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« on: November 05, 2006, 07:33:16 PM »

Neal McLaughlin (assistant to Kiaran McLaughlin, trainer Invasor, 1st,

Classic) – Trainer Kiaran McLaughlin left for New York early Sunday morning, but his younger brother and assistant, Neal, remained at Churchill Downs to tend to the needs of Invasor, the impressive winner of the Breeders’ Cup Classic – Powered by Dodge.

“Our feet haven’t hit the ground yet,” he said. “It hasn’t sunk in yet.”

The Classic triumph by Shadwell Stable’s colorbearer was a fitting end to a brilliant 2006 campaign, during which the McLaughlin stable has won seven Grade I races, including the Belmont Stakes with Jazil.

“I just want to hit ‘pause’ and enjoy it as long as I can,” Neal McLaughlin said.

With his one-length victory over heavily favored Bernardini in the Classic, Invasor captured his fourth straight race since coming to the United States, establishing himself as a clear frontrunner for the 2006 Horse of the Year title.

The 2005 Uruguayan Triple Crown champion, whose only loss in 10 starts came in the UAE Derby in Dubai after being purchased privately by Sheikh Hamdan’s Shadwell Stable, hadn’t raced since winning the Whitney Handicap at Saratoga on Aug. 5. Invasor’s scheduled start in the Jockey Club Gold Cup at Belmont on Oct. 7 was scrapped because of a fever.

“Michael Matz showed us we could bring a fresh horse to Churchill Downs and win,” said the younger McLaughlin, nodding in the direction of Matz, who saddled Barbaro for victory in this year’s Kentucky Derby, as well as saddling Round Pond for a triumph in the Distaff on Saturday. “That gave us a bit of a silver lining.”

McLaughlin had high praise for 18-year-old jockey Fernando Jara’s confident and ground-saving ride aboard Invasor that put him in the Breeders’ Cup history books as the youngest winning rider in the World Championships.

“He saved ground from his 11 post. Invasor’s the kind of horse that needs a target to run at. When he had Bernardini to run at, it turned out great,” McLaughlin said. “Bernardini is a great horse, but yesterday at 5:30, our horse was just a better horse.”

McLaughlin reported that Sheikh Hamdan had made no decisions about Invasor’s future, but voiced his support to send the son of Candy Stripes back to Dubai to avenge his only loss with a start in the Dubai World Cup next year.

Tom Albertrani (trainer, Bernardini, 2nd, Classic and Balletto, finished 4th placed 3rd, Distaff) – After checking on Bernardini and Balletto Sunday morning, Tom Albertrani caught a flight back to New York. The Darley Stable horses will stay in Kentucky pending the announcement on whether they will stay in training or be retired.

“I think in a couple of days we’ll probably know more,” he said. “I think they’re going to decide what the future is for both horses.”

Bernardini’s six-race winning streak came to an end in the Classic in a one-length loss to Invasor.

“He is a very talented horse that comes around once in a long time,” Albertrani said. “There’s no disgrace. He still proved that he is a good horse, a very good horse.”

Bernardini mowed down the competition winning the Withers, Preakness, Jim Dandy, Travers and Jockey Club Gold Cup. Albertrani said he did not think the outcome of the Classic would have changed if the 3yo colt ridden by Javier Castellano had more experience in testing races.

“He was fresh coming into the race,” Albertrani said. “Just down the backside, I was a little concerned. I don’t know whether he wasn’t getting a good hold of the track or not.  Javier didn’t make the comment. I hate to use that as an excuse, but give Invasor credit, he ran a good race.”

Albertrani said the Horse of the Year was probably decided in the Classic.

“I think that’s all going to go toward Invasor now,” he said. “You can’t fault him for doing anything wrong since he’s been here. I guess we’re a length shy of that maybe. No disgrace for our horse. We’re proud of him and he had a great year.”

Albertrani said he expects Bernardini will be the 3yo male champ.

“I would certainly think so. He’s proven that already,” Albertrani said. “After the Travers I think we were starting to see that. People said you have to do something spectacular and I think he came pretty close to doing what everyone was expecting him to do if he was going to be the 3-year-old champion. Even to run second in the Breeders’ Cup, I certainly would think that would give him enough credentials to be the top 3-year-olds.   I think he’s had the 3-year-olds outclassed all year.”

            Balletto had a wide trip, finished fourth and was moved up to third by the disqualification of Asi Siempre.

“She came out of the race fine. She had a rough trip,” Albertrani said. “I think Corey (jockey Corey Nakatani) was trying to get her to change leads. She wouldn’t cooperate as well. Her whole career she’s been that way. She ran well. I just thought we had a pretty rough trip going around there with her.”

Michael Matz (trainer, Round Pond, 1st, Distaff) – The 4yo filly owned by Rick Porter’s Fox Hill Farms came out of the race with a minor cut on her right front leg and was scheduled to ship back to the Fair Hill training center in Maryland later Sunday.

 The Kentucky Derby-winning trainer of Barbaro said the victory in the Emirates Airline Breeders’ Cup Distaff may affect Porter’s plans for Round Pond.

“He was going to retire her before the race and then yesterday he said he might race her,” Matz said. “I think after we get her back home we’ll take a look at her and see what he wants to do.”

            Matz smiled at the suggestion that he would be hoping the filly stays in training.

“Anybody would like to have a filly of that quality in their barn,” he said.

In his comments during the Sunday Press Breakfast, Matz talked about the fatal injury suffered by the Phipps Stable’s Pine Island during the Distaff. 

“Obviously, with what happened to Pine Island, our thoughts are out with all the connections,” he said.

The stretch run of the Classic in which Invasor caught and passed Bernardini produced a question to Matz about Barbaro being in the mix.

“You always think about what it would have been like to have him in those classics,” he said. “The good news is they’re going to get the cast off this week. That’s exciting news.”

Matz acknowledged that the public continues its love affair with the Derby winner.

“It’s been a lot of support from a lot of people,” he said. “It’s been a big help.”

 Round Pond was transferred to Matz’ barn this summer and he had to deal with issues with her feet.

“We had our problems with her this summer,” Matz said. “It was just great to get her back in top form. I was happy for Mr. Porter (Rick Porter, owner of Fox Hill Farm), he puts a lot into the business. It was great for him to have a win.”

            Changing to glue-on shoes helped Matz solve the filly’s sore feet and train her the way he wanted to prior to the Distaff.

“She was coming into the race better than I’ve ever had her before,” he said. “I had some problems before the Beldame, but was coming into the race the right way. She showed it.”

Matz and leading jockey Edgar Prado collaborated on Barbaro’s Derby victory, won the Chilukki Stakes Thursday and secured their third Churchill stakes win in the Distaff. Prado saved ground with Round Pond, sat patiently behind the pacesetters and moved the filly up the rail for the victory.

“He’s a top rider,” Matz said. “There’s not much you have to say about Edgar. He’s a top rider and he gives you a good performance every time.”

Wayne Catalano (trainer, Dreaming of Anna, 1st, Juvenile Fillies and Lewis Michael, 11th, Sprint) – Trainer Wayne Catalano was using his cell phone to take pictures of Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies champion Dreaming of Anna as she was being walked around the shedrow in Barn 28 at Churchill Downs Sunday morning.

            “It’s a good feeling,” said Catalano of winning his first Breeders’ Cup race.  “This is why you get up at 4:30 a.m. seven days a week, 365 days a year – that hopefully one day you train a champion filly like her.”

            The daughter of Rahy, who completed a perfect four-for-four 2yo campaign with a front running 1 ½-length victory in the Juvenile Fillies on Saturday, came out of her race in good order and will remain at Churchill until Catalano ships his stock to Palm Meadows in Florida this month.

            If all goes well, a return trip to Kentucky next May is in the plans for Catalano and owner Frank Calabrese, who also notched his first Breeders’ Cup victory.  Talk of facing the boys in the Kentucky Derby was mentioned in the euphoria of the moment Saturday, but Catalano was less inclined to commit to that route when asked again Sunday morning.

            “Sure, it’s every owner and trainer’s dream to win the Kentucky Derby,” he said, “but I think that was more of the emotion talking.  I’ll talk things over with Mr. Calabrese and Steve (stable manager Leving) and we’ll go from there.  She’s a champion on the dirt – she proved that yesterday, but I think she’s a superstar on grass (where she has two stakes wins to her credit) and there’s a lot of big money races for 3-year-old fillies on the turf, too.”

            Catalano also reported that Dreaming of Anna’s full brother, the 3yo Lewis Michael, came out of his 11th-place finish in the Sprint in good order.

Doug O’Neill (trainer, Thor’s Echo, 1st, Sprint) – The ever-enthusiastic Southern California-based trainer was basking in the afterglow Sunday morning by Thor’s Echo in the TVG Breeders’ Cup Sprint victory on Saturday at Churchill Downs.

He told an audience of horsemen and media at the Sunday Press Breakfast how special it was for him to win such a race for longtime clients Pablo Suarez of Suarez Racing and Royse S. Jaime.

The globe-trotting California-bred son of Swiss Yodeler attended the early pace in the Sprint and then bolted past the leaders to go on and win by a solid four lengths. The 15-1 longshot has been from Southern California to Dubai and back, as well as a number of stops in between on his odyssey that carried him to victory on Saturday.

“It’s really credit to how sturdy the horse is,” O’Neill said. “The breeders are here and that’s an indication of how much he’s a loved horse and how well he was taken care of before we even got our hands on him.”

Suarez, walked the shedrow Sunday morning with Thor’s Echo and said at the time that he was trying to pass the horses in front of him and dragging Suarez along.

As for Saturday’s excitement, Suarez said he was on the telephone to his wife yelling, “He’s third, now he’s second and now he’s first and we’re going to win, we’re going to win.” Suarez said that in the excitement, he hung up on his wife. Master of ceremonies for the event, John Asher, quipped, “It’s OK to hang up on your wife if you bring home the money.”

Suarez said, “Winning was really thrilling and we feel so fortunate to even be in the Breeders’ Cup. Not in our wildest dreams did we ever think we could win. We sort of feel undeserving because there are so many people out there who have spent more time and money on the sport.”

Looking back on the race, O’Neill talked about the defining moment for Thor’s Echo and jockey Corey Nakatani. “The majority of the field started separating from the two leaders and gave Corey the chance to get out in the clear. Pablo and I at the time had come to the conclusion that there was a little bias on the inside and had told Corey to take advantage of that, so when he swung to the outside we were hoping the horse wouldn’t lose his stride, but Corey’s a tremendous rider in races like this and everything came out perfect.”

O’Neill’s pre-race prime candidate on the day, Lava Man in the Classic, was reported in good shape Sunday morning though he could do no better than a seventh-place finish after what Nakatani said was a trip in which he never got hold of the track. The trainer made no reference to how the surface affected Lava Man’s race but did say the 5yo gelded son of Slew City Slew “bled a little bit, but nothing substantial.”

Even with a third-place finish in the Juvenile, Great Hunter lost no luster with his trainer. “I still think he is a terrific horse,” O’Neill said. He also believes the Eclipse Award for a 2yo male is still open to debate, though he was extremely complimentary of the Carl Nafzger-trained Juvenile winner, Street Sense. O’Neill indicated that the Hollywood Futurity could be in Great Hunter’s future if he comes back in good shape.

As of Sunday morning, prospects seemed good.

O’Neill’s other sprinter, Areyoutalkintome, was reported in good shape Sunday morning, too, after finishing 13th in the race, beating only the heavy favorite, Henny Hughes.

O’Neill’s fifth Breeders’ Cup runner, Sharp Lisa, who was prominent for most of the 1 1/8m Distaff before fading to sixth, shipped out of the barn about 4 a.m. Sunday for Lexington, where she will be in the Fasig-Tipton breeding stock sale set for Sunday night.

John Kimmel (trainer Premium Tap, 3rd, Classic) – Premium Tap was back in his stall at Belmont Park late Sunday morning after an early flight from Louisville. The third-place finisher at 27-1 behind Invasor and Bernardini was reported to be happy and healthy by his trainer, John Kimmel.

“We’ll give him a little break and then crank him up,” Kimmel said. “He’s definitely going to race again next year.”

Kimmel reported that Premium Tap would winter in South Florida to prepare for a 2006 campaign.

            Graham Motion (trainer, Better Talk Now, 2nd, Turf, and Film Maker, 2nd, Filly & Mare Turf) – Trainer Graham Motion reported that Better Talk Now came out of his second-place finish behind Red Rocks in the Turf in good order and ready to race another day.

“We’ll get together and contemplate the Hong Kong Cup if he runs again this year,” said Graham, whose 7yo gelding won the 2004 Turf at Lone Star Park and finished seventh in the 2005 edition at Belmont Park.

Better Talk Now, who finished only a half-length behind Red Rocks, earned $800,000 to send his earnings to more than $3.7 million.

“I thought Better Talk Now had a real shot at winning, but the other horse ran a tremendous race,” Motion said. “He had no excuse. He got a great trip and was second best. But I hope people will give him the credit he deserves.”

Better Talk Now will stay in training as long as he can compete at his current level.

“Who’s to say he won’t run next year (in the 2007 Turf at Monmouth Park)? If he runs in Hong Kong, we can give him a break and plan a schedule to get him to the Breeders’ Cup, as we did this year,” said Motion.

Although Motion had entertained the idea of running Film Maker in the Hong Kong Vase in December, the decision was made to retire the 5yo mare following her second-place finish behind Ouija Board.

“She’s going to Lane’s End (Monday morning) and will be bred to Storm Cat,” said Motion. “We felt at this stage of the game that we wanted to send her home sound. We wanted her to walk out of the barn the same was she walked into the barn.”

Film Maker finished second twice and third once in her three starts in the Filly & Mare Turf, finishing directly behind two-time winner and European superstar Ouija Board on each occasion.

“It’s disappointing that Film Maker had to run against Ouija Board all three years. In any other era, she’d have won at least one of those races,” Motion said. “Film Maker has nothing to be ashamed of finishing second to such a great mare.”

Chad Brown, assistant to Robert Frankel (trainer, Cacique, 10th, Turf and Badge of Silver, 3rd, Mile) – “I don’t have any explanation for why Cacique didn’t hit the board, but the other horse (Badge of Silver) ran a huge race (in the Mile),” said the young assistant in charge of the Frankel string at Churchill on Sunday morning.

Owner Kenneth Ramsey was all smiles as he seconded that assessment later in the morning at the Breeders’ Cup Sunday breakfast. “I was really pleased,” the owner said. “Frankel had him ready to run. I don’t think he came up short. Edgar Prado gave him a great ride. Prado said if we don’t have to run him so hard early, we might have won the race. The 2 horse (Silent Name) did go with us and cause us to burn a little bit of energy, plus he hung us a little bit wide, and we just got beat a little for second place.”

Ramsey expressed enthusiasm for how the 6yo son of Silver Deputy came out of the race. “I saw him in the barn this morning and he couldn’t have looked any better,” he said.

Ramsey said he’s trying to persuade Frankel to run the horse in the Cigar Mile on Nov. 25 at Aqueduct. “I’d like to have him look Discreet Cat in the eye and see if the other horse will blink.

“I don’t mean to say he’s not a good horse, but he is a 3-year-old and he’s had things pretty much his own way in his races, and I’d like to see how he does against an older horse. You know, Bernardini and Henny Hughes, who are very good horses, didn’t do as well against older horses yesterday.”

Bill Spawr (trainer, Bordonaro, 4th, Sprint) – Disappointed but not dismayed, the trainer said of Bordonaro’s fourth-place finish in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint: “He just never handled the track. Corey (jockey Nakatani aboard the winner, Thor’s Echo) said as he went by us it looked like Bordonaro was skating.”

Spawr said the horse came back from the race well, except for some cuts that he got during the race. The 4yo gelded son of Memo, who had three wins and a second in 2006 heading into the Sprint, was scheduled to ship back to California Sunday afternoon.

Neil Drysdale (trainer, Aragorn, 2nd, Mile) – The Hall of Fame trainer, whose Aragorn was a flying second in the Mile, was back in California Sunday, and the horse was on his way back West Sunday morning.

John Shirreffs (trainer, Giacomo, 4th, Classic & Hollywood Story, (10th, Distaff) – The trainer of 2005 Kentucky Derby winner Giacomo and Hollywood Story was absent from the backstretch Sunday morning, but his assistant, Michelle Jensen, said both horses came out of their races in good shape.

In his usual style, the late-charging gray Derby champion roared all the way from last place in the 13-horse field to finish fourth, beaten 4 ½ lengths.

Hollywood Story was never a factor in the Distaff’s strung-out field.

          Stewart Madison (owner, Happy Ticket, 2nd, Distaff) – “She is fine this morning and we are going back to New Orleans to the Fair Grounds. We will see how she is doing and depending on that, either continue to race her or discontinue to race her. She has had a tough campaign. She has had to run at the highest level for a long time. She deserves a rest.

            “I will probably leave it in Andy’s hands (trainer Andrew Leggio Jr. on the decision to retire or keep racing Happy Ticket). He will tell me what kind of shape she is in. If she is not pretty much 100 percent, I don’t think I’d go on with her.”

Carl Nafzger (trainer Street Sense, 1st, Juvenile) – “He went out a jogged a mile with the first set this morning and he is fine.”

            Asked if he was surprised by the 10-length margin of victory by Street Sense in the Bessemer Trust Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, Nafzger said: “I think everybody was. You think you can win a race and you think you’ve got a good horse, but, to do what he did yesterday, yes, that was surprising.

“We knew he had talent. He blew to the lead at Keeneland (in the Breeders’ Futurity) and then he came out of the bit.”

            On what is next for Street Sense: “He is done for the year. We are headed to Palm Meadows (Fla.). That was the schedule when we started. He made every race and we have done what we wanted to do.”

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D. Wayne Lukas (trainer Pegasus Wind, 10th, Juvenile) – “He displaced (his palate) yesterday. He had never given any indication of anything like that. He doesn’t even wear a tongue tie or anything like that. He picked a bad day to do that. We will put some different equipment on him and he will be fine. He is done for the year and then we will start aiming for the classics.”

Tom Amoss (trainer Rush Bay, 4th, Turf and Baghdaria, 7th, Distaff) – “Both of them will go to the farm for 60 days, because there are no races for them now. They will get a well-earned rest and I will bring them back next year and our goal is to come back in the same kind of races with both of them. I was pleased with both horses. The way the track played yesterday, it did not help the chances of Baghdaria. I think they both ran really good races.”

Scott Blasi (trainer, Appealing Zophie, 4th, Juvenile Fillies) – “I want to see how she came out of the race (before deciding on a next race). She will go to the Fair Grounds for the winter. We gave her a break in the middle of the summer and she is pretty fresh right now. I think she is improving a lot in every race.

“She definitely has some quality. The winner (Dreaming of Anna) is a very special filly. When you are the one putting the pressure on them, trying to beat them, it usually costs you some position, but that is the approach we took and I wouldn’t change anything.”

Dallas Stewart (trainer, Lemons Forever, 5th, Distaff, and Silverfoot, 9th, Turf) – According to Stewart, the fatal accident of Pine Island on the backstretch of the Distaff forced jockey Mark Guidry to react quickly and may have had an impact on where Lemons Forever finished.

“He swerved to miss her and just about pulled her up,” Stewart said. “He was about a sixteenth of a mile behind them, it looked like to me, and she came running. She got beat just a length (1 ½ lengths) for second. If everything would have went right, I think she would have been right there. Fortunately, she didn’t wind up on the ground or run over somebody. That would have been a disaster.”

            Lemons Forever was scheduled to go through the auction ring at Keeneland Tuesday, but Stewart said those plans may change.

“We don’t know yet,” he said. “We’re talking about it.”

Stewart said he could not explain why Silverfoot failed to launch a rally in the Turf, whose quick early pace should have helped the closer.

“The horse just didn’t fire,” Stewart said. “He may be a little tired and needs a break.”

Stewart said his favorite moment of the 2006 Breeders’ Cup was the victory by the Kiaran McLaughlin-trained Invasor in the Classic.

            “I enjoyed seeing Kiaran’s horse perform. It was awesome,” he said. “I’m very proud of him and all his people. It was just awesome to see him get that job done. We’ve been friends a long time.”

Ken McCarthy, assistant to Bill Mott on (Got the Last Laugh, 13th, Juvenile and My Typhoon, 6th, Filly & Mare Turf) ­– “They both came back fine,” he said.

“Obviously, the 2-year-old was a little disappointing. Rene (jockey Rene Douglas) said that down the backside he was looking at the other horses and instead of laying in towards them, would never get down in there. Then around the turn he began to fall back and he didn’t persist with him.

            “I thought the filly ran a game race. It might be a little bit too far for her, but you couldn’t ask for a better performance from her. She tried as hard as she could.”


Although he did not saddle a winner despite running a record 17 horses in Saturday’s, Breeders’ Cup World Championships, trainer Todd Pletcher was far from forlorn Sunday morning at his barn at Churchill Downs.

He moved into ninth-place in trainer earnings in Breeders’ Cup history and added to his single-season earnings record, which is now above $26 million with little less than two months remaining in 2006.

Pletcher was especially glad to report that Fleet Indian, the post-time favorite who was eased in the lane during the running of the Distaff, did not suffer a major injury and will likely be good as new following 30-60 days of stall rest. She will not undergo surgery.

“We are still waiting for some of the edema to go away before we take an MRI and ultrasound, but so far, X-rays are pretty clean,” Pletcher said. “There was no fracture, no broken bones. She suffered a tear in the lateral and medial suspensory branch in her left-front ankle.”

  The New York-bred Fleet Indian, who had won eight straight races going into the Distaff, is still Pletcher’s choice for champion older female.

“I think she has a very good chance to be champion,” Pletcher said. “Especially if you take in her body of work.”

Fleet Indian’s injury was not Pletcher’s only disappointment in the Distaff. Spun Sugar and Pool Land, eighth and ninth respectively, contributed to the misery as well.

“I really thought that Spun Sugar would run much better than she did,” Pletcher said. “Same with Pool Land. They both trained well, and I can’t figure out a reason why they didn’t run better.” 

Asked how he assessed yesterday, Pletcher gave a simple response.

“It was a day that we have all the time in this business,” he said. “One filled with ups and downs. The only difference was the ups and downs happened so quickly.”

            Pletcher’s most surprising performer yesterday was Friendly Island, who ran second in the Sprint at 58-1.

            “Going into the race, we knew he was capable of closing,” Pletcher said. “And, he had run second to Bordonaro (Count Fleet at Oaklawn Park), who was the second choice in the Sprint. We felt he had a real good chance of getting a piece.”

            Pletcher was also happy with the performance of runner-up Circular Quay and fourth-place finisher Scat Daddy in the Juvenile, as well as runner-up Octave and third-place finisher Cotton Blossom in the Juvenile Fillies.

            “Circular Quay and Scat Daddy both proved that they belong with the (Kentucky) Derby horses for next year,” Pletcher said. “Octave trained very well going into the Juvenile Fillies, and she ran a great race, just as we thought she would. Cotton Blossom also did well.”

            Classic runners Flower Alley and Lawyer Ron were among Pletcher’s disappointments.

            “Flower Alley we just haven’t been able to figure out,” Pletcher said of the 11th-place finisher yesterday who was runner-up in the 2005 Classic at Belmont Park. “We haven’t figured him out since he won the Salvatore Mile. He will be heading to Three Chimneys Farm to take up stud duty.

            “As for Lawyer Ron, we had worked on trying to get him to settle, but he was too headstrong. As soon as that gate opened up, well, he pretty much ran off.”

Pletcher continued to campaign for English Channel, who finished third in the Turf.

            “He didn’t run his race yesterday,” Pletcher said. “The post (10) was part of that. But I think you can still make a strong argument for him being the champion older turf male,” Pletcher said. “I think you have to give strong consideration to horses that have performed well at different places and in major races throughout the year.”

            Honey Ryder, who was third in the Filly & Mare Turf, left for Fasig-Tipton today, but her retirement will depend on whether she sells.

            Pletcher said that it is unlikely that his Breeders’ Cup horses will race again this year. All of his juvenile runners, Wait A While, Quiet Royal, English Channel, Go Deputy, Icy Atlantic and probably Lawyer Ron will return next year. 


HORSE                            RACE, FINISH                EARNINGS
Lawyer Ron                       Classic, 9th
Flower Alley                       Classic, 11th
English Channel                  Turf, 3rd                              $300,000
Go Deputy                         Turf, 7th                                   
Icy Atlantic                         Turf, 11th
Spun Sugar                         Distaff, 8th
Pool Land                          Distaff, 9th
Fleet  Indian                       Distaff, Eased                   
Honey Ryder                      Filly & Mare Turf, 3rd         $220,000
Wait A While                     Filly & Mare Turf, 4th         $112,200
Quiet Royal                        Filly & Mare Turf, 9th
Friendly Island                    Sprint, 2nd                           $426,000
Circular Quay                     Juvenile, 2nd                        $400,000
Scat Daddy                        Juvenile, 4th                        $102,000
King of the Roxy                Juvenile, 8th
Cotton Blossom                  Juvenile Fillies, 3rd               $200,000
Octave                               Juvenile Fillies, 2nd              $400,000

Total earnings for the day:   $2,160,200


Ouija Board (1st, Filly & Mare Turf) – Lord Derby’s 5yo mare Ouija Board is nearing the end of an international career that ranks her among the greatest international champions in history after winning the Emirates Airline Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf Saturday.

The daughter of Cape Cross became the first European-trained runner to compete in the Breeders’ Cup three times. Sunday morning, Lord Derby said, “For her to have been kept at that level for three years is remarkable. This will be her last year and will very likely be sent back here to Kentucky to be bred. Kingmambo is among the stallions being considered.”

Trainer Ed Dunlop said of her career: “It has been a life-changing experience for me. She was a little unlucky last year when second to Intercontinental. I was never worried that she wouldn’t run her race yesterday. She’ll have one more run, and possibly two this season, and that will be it.

            “She’s invited to Japan (Japan Cup on Nov. 26), and then we’ll consider whether to go on to Hong Kong (December).”

Ouija Board will leave Churchill Downs soon and ship to New York where she will spend a week before be flown to Japan, according to the International Racing Bureau.

            Red Rocks (1st, Turf) – J. Paul Reddam’s 3yo Red Rocks was not the most fancied of the European-trained runners in Saturday’s John Deere Breeders’ Cup Turf, but his impressive victory at 11-to-1 has cast him on the international stage with ambitious plans for next season.

            Trainer Brian Meehan said, “He was running very consistently in good races this summer, which was when we made the decision to make the trip for the Breeders’ Cup. We would like to thank those that set such a good pace up front,” said the trainer in jest.

            Reddam purchased the son of Galileo privately a year ago and said that a tentative schedule would have him point next for the Dubai Sheema Classic in March, return to England for major engagements next summer and return to the U.S. to defend his Breeders’ Cup title at Monmouth Park.

            George Washington (6th, Classic), Ad Valorem (13th Mile), Scorpion (5th, Turf) and Aussie Rules (8th, Mile) – The four Coolmore runners based in Ireland with trainer Aidan O’Brien were boarding a flight Sunday morning to go home.

George Washington has been retired and will go to stud next season while plans for the other three have not been revealed.

            Hurricane Run (6th, Turf) – Michael Tabor’s 4yo Hurricane Run, winner of the 2005 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe was the lukewarm favorite for the John Deere Turf at just under 3-to-1, but finished a non-threatening sixth.

            Trained by Andre Fabre, the son of Montjeu is expected to go to stud next year, but no word yet whether he might be given a final chance this season in Japan or Hong Kong. He flies back to France on Monday or Tuesday.

            Rob Roy (5th, Mile) –  Philip Newton’s 4yo Rob Roy finished a respectable fifth in the NetJets Breeders’ Cup Mile for trainer Sir Michael Stoute, but the Kentucky-bred son of Lear Fan will not return to England, but rather be sent to California to continue his career with trainer Neil Drysdale, according to the International Racing Bureau.

            Araafa (9th, Mile) – Saleh al Homaizi and Imad al Sagar’s 3yo Araafa went off the lukewarm favorite at 3-to-1 in the NetJets Breeders’ Cup Mile for trainer Jeremy Noseda, but was never a serious threat, finishing ninth. The son of Mull of Kintyre goes back to England on a flight Monday or Tuesday.

            Santalugi (11th, Juvenile Fillies) – Mrs. Fitri Hay’s 2yo filly Santalugi, 11th in the Juvenile Fillies, goes home to England on a flight Monday or Tuesday to get ready for her 3yo campaign, The Kentucky-bred daughter of Officer was the only European-trained 2yo in this year’s Breeders’ Cup.

            Sleeping Indian (4th, Mile) – George Strawbridge’s 5yo Sleeping Indian finished a game fourth in the NetJets Mile, beaten only a neck and head for second. The son of Indian Ridge has been sold to David Redvers and goes to stud next season at Tweenhills Stud in England.

            Satwa Queen (5th, Filly & Mare Turf) – Gillian and Steven Lamprell’s 4yo filly Satwa Queen finished a close-up fifth in the Emirates Airline Filly & Mare Turf, beaten only two lengths for second. Trained by Jean de Roualle, the daughter of Muhtathir returns to France on a flight Monday or Tuesday and remains in training next year.

            Librettist (10th, Mile) & Echo of Light (14th, Mile) – Godolphin’s team in the NetJets Mile finished 10th and 14th behind 24-to-1 longshot Miesque’s Approval. No plans have been revealed.
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