Unusual Way kicks off Breeders' Cup Saturday in gate-to-wire-fashion
The Jeff Bonde trainee had good early speed and went gate-to-wire for a 3 1/2-length win. Unusual Way posted fractions of :22 2/5, :45 1/5 and 1:10. The bay filly stopped the clock in 1:23 2/5 going seven furlongs over the fast main track with Ramon Dominguez aboard.
Switch to the Lead was second throughout and held for place. Truly Marie, Bares Tripper and Sultry Season rounded out the order of finish.
Unusual Way paid $7.20, $3.80 and $3 to her backers as the 5-2 second choice. The daughter of Unusual Heat was exiting an 11-length score in the Wine Country Debutante last out at Santa Rosa. With back-to-back stakes wins, the filly boosted her bankroll to $145,610 and now sports a career mark of 5-3-0-0.
Bred in California by Thomas Bachman, Unusual Way sold for $65,000 as a Barretts October yearling and is out of the multiple stakes-placed Great Above mare Way Up.
Next up, Gabriel Charles captured the $100,000 Juvenile Turf Sprint Preview with Joe Talamo aboard.
Campaigned by Sam Britt and Michael House, Gabriel Charles sat in third throughout until he made his move in the stretch and passed tiring pacesetter and eventual fourth-place finisher Kafister, who posted fractions of :21 3/5 and :43 3/5. Trained by Jeff Mullins, Gabriel Charles covered about 6 1/2 furlongs on the firm downhill turf in 1:12 1/5 as he pulled away to win by 3 1/2 lengths.
Den's Legacy came flying from the back of the pack to get second while Mico Margarita, who was a length farther back, came in third. Kafister was fourth, a neck in front of Moulin de Mougin, while One Firm Cat, Upward Spiral, Snow King, Scherer Magic and No Rachmones completed the order under the wire. Avare, Dancin Upside Down, Jump for Kitten and Under Review were all withdrawn.
The Kentucky-bred Gabriel Charles was the third choice at nearly 5-1 and returned $11.80, $5.80 and $4.40 to his backers. The Street Hero two-year-old was coming off a sixth-place finish in the Grade 1 Del Mar Futurity and a seventh-place finish in the Grade 1 FrontRunner in his last two. With his first stakes victory on Saturday, the bay increased his lifetime earnings to $102,000 and now has a career mark of 4-2-0-0.
Bred by Doris Tummillo, Gabriel Charles sold for $19,000 at the 2011 Keeneland September Yearling Sale, then brought $160,000 as an OBS April two-year-old in training. He is out of the stakes-placed Atticus mare Star of Atticus, and comes from the same black-type rich family as Horse of the Year Saint Liam and champion blue-hen mare Gallorette.
In the final race on Saturday's Breeders' Cup undercard, Ken and Sarah Ramsey's homebred Politicallycorrect was victorious in the $100,000 Damascus.
The Wesley Ward trainee was three wide entering the stretch but rallied and ran down pacesetter Private Zone, who posted fractions of :22, :43 4/5 and 1:08. Politicallycorrect covered seven furlongs on the main track in 1:20 4/5 to win by 1 1/4 lengths with Joel Rosario aboard.
Private Zone held on for place and Brother Francis was another length back to finish third. Sir Bond, Mile High Magic and Our Lucky Son rounded out the order of finish after Equitius was withdrawn.
Politicallycorrect entered this one off his first stakes victory in the Oklahoma Derby. The three-year-old gelded son of Kitten's Joy returned $8.80, $4.60 and $3.20 to his supporters as the near 7-2 second favorite. He now has a career line which reads 13-4-3-2, $411,375.
The Kentucky-bred is out of the Tale of the Cat mare Exceedexpectations. Notables in Politicallycorrect's female family include Grade/Group 1 winners Sporting Yankee and Delighter as well as champion Hurry to Market.
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