Nereid – Trainer John Shirreffs was forced to declare Nereid from the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf.
“She is off in her right hind,” Shirreffs said. “She had already come over (Tuesday from Betfair Hollywood Park). She must have kicked the wall or something. The injury is very minor but came at the worst possible time.”
Lady of Shamrock – The 3yo filly was part of a group of John Sadler-trained horses that jogged 1 1/2m through the pre-6 a.m. fog.
“They all did fine,” Sadler said. “You could see parts of it through the fog and the exercise riders are all experienced riders so there were no problems.”
Lady of Shamrock is one of four Breeders' Cup entrants that Sadler will send out seeking his first win in the fall championship event. Sadler is aware of his 0-for-24 record with Breeders' Cup starters, but not overly concerned.
“Bobby Frankel went 0-for-52, I believe,” Sadler said. “So when I pass 52, I'll panic. But I've got a ways to go before that.”
Sadler has two second-place finishes, Switch in the 2010 and 2011 Filly & Mare Sprint events at Churchill Downs, and two third-place finishes, Whatsthescript in the 2008 Mile and Cost of Freedom in the 2009 Sprint.
“Switch has run well, Cost of Freedom was in (a win) photo, and how can you be disappointed with Whatsthescript running third to Goldikova?” Sadler said. “It'll happen (a win). I'm very confident of that.”
Marketing Mix – Glen Hill Farm’s Marketing Mix was out on the track as early as possible on Wednesday morning.
“The track opened at 5 o’clock and (trainer) Tom (Proctor) had her out there at 5:01,” said Craig Bernick, the president of Glen Hill, who was on hand at Santa Anita on Wednesday. “She’s really good and Tommy is happy with her.”
Glen Hill, founded in 1966 by Leonard Lavin, Bernick’s 93-year-old grandfather, was prominent for its breeding as well as racing operation. All but one of the farm’s previous seven Breeders’ Cup starters were homebreds, with the exclusion of Customer Base, who was 11th in last year’s Juvenile Fillies Turf.
Marketing Mix, Glen Hill’s most accomplished runner at this time and its only entrant in this year’s Breeders’ Cup, is a Canadian-bred who was purchased for $150,000 at the 2009 Keeneland September Yearling sale during the period when the operation was buying stock on the commercial market to race rather than predominantly relying upon horses carrying its bloodlines.
“For the first few years after I took over (in 2008), that was the case. Our homebreds didn’t have the firepower in their lines. We really had to do that,” said Bernick, who is rebuilding the breeding part of the operation. “But now we’re in the position where we can race more of our own again and be more selective and buy fewer horses.”
Marketing Mix is the 9-2 second choice in a field stocked with the best North America and Europe have to offer.
“Having the favorite (The Fugue) at 7-2 shows just how wide open this race is,” said Bernick. “Hopefully, our filly gets a good trip and she’s fast enough to win.”
Nahrain – see European report
Star Billing – Star Billing, a 4yo filly, jogged 1m on the Santa Anita main track Wednesday under exercise rider Marco Ramirez after being shipped from Betfair Hollywood Park Tuesday.
Trainer John Shirreffs said he considered running the George Krikorian homebred in the Ladies’ Classic but opted for the Filly & Mare Turf after a sixth-place finish in the Zenyatta Stakes on the dirt on Sept. 29.
“We experimented with Star Billing on the dirt, but were not satisfied and put her back on turf where she is a grade I winner," Shirreffs explained.
Star Billing won the Grade I Matriarch on the Hollywood Park turf in November.
Ridasiyna – see European report
The Fugue – see European report
Up – see European report
Zagora – Martin Schwartz’s multiple graded stakes-winner galloped about 1 1/2m Wednesday morning for trainer Chad Brown. The 5yo Green Tune mare is coming into the Breeders’ Cup off a second-place finish to Nahrain in the Flower Bowl Invitational at Belmont Park.
Last year at Saratoga, she gave Brown the first grade I win of his young career in the Diana. She did not race in the 2011 Breeders’ Cup, but has come back as a very capable stakes runner with more than $600,000 in purse money won in 2012.
“She’s filled out and looked strong this year and she’s run some really nice races,” Brown said. “I know that she won the Diana last year and she hasn’t won a grade I yet this year, but I don’t think that means she’s lost a step. If anything, a couple of her speed numbers are faster this year. We’re talking about a horse that has won four graded stakes already this year. That’s pretty good.”