With the sun breaking through at Churchill Downs Nov. 5, all was quiet on the backside as everyone waited for the 12:05 p.m. EDT post time for day two of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships.
With morning training over at 8 a.m., there were not many trainers around.
One that was on hand was Bill Mott, the Hall of Famer who the previous day saddled Royal Delta to win the Ladies’ Classic (gr. I). The win by the favorite gave Mott his second straight win in the race after saddling Unrivaled Belle to win a year ago, and set him up to possibly sweep the weekend’s feature races. In Saturday's Classic (gr. I), Mott will be represented by Drosselmeyer and To Honor and Serve .
“You can go years without winning one of these races, and then you win one and then two,” said Mott, noting that he had a quiet celebration following the race. “It’s strange how that works out.”
Mott, who was being congratulated by fellow horsemen and conducting television interviews, said he believed Royal Delta’s win sewed up the 3-year-old filly championship for the daughter of Empire Maker.
“I think that will do it for her,” Mott said. “There is no other way to go with the 3-year-old (fillies).”
Mott said he believes Royal Delta will “be expensive” to buy when she goes through the sales ring at Keeneland Nov. 8. The filly is being sold as part of the dispersal of the late Prince Saud bin Khaled’s bloodstock holdings.
Although there have been numerous private offers for Royal Delta over the last eight months, Mott said the public auction route was the proper way to sell the filly. “That’s the fair way to do it,” Mott said. “Let the public decide what they’re worth… Let them price her.”
With the National Weather Service forecasting picture perfect weather for Nov. 5, Churchill Downs officials were hoping for a large number of walkup ticket sales.
With sunny skies and zero chance of rain, the high temperature is expected to be 65 degrees.