The one-two finishers in the Breeders' Cup Distaff are scheduled to meet again Thanksgiving Day in the grade III Falls City Handicap at Churchill Downs. The 1 1/8-mile, $250,000 event for fillies and mares could have Eclipse Award implications.
The rigors of being a Thoroughbred trainer means spending nearly as much time on the phone as training horses. In the past four months, Dallas Stewart has made and taken thousands of calls, but two have proven to be life altering. The first, a body blow, came in early June, when owner Roger Devenport phoned to say he was taking his horses and transferring them to trainer David Vance's barn. The second came just eight days before the Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I). That second call was Devenport asking Stewart to take the horses back.
The Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) has the reputation of being the most formful race on racing's most important day. However, it is actually the Juvenile that has the lowest average winning payoff of $10.84 of the seven traditional races on the card. The Filly & Mare Turf (gr. IT) has only had two runnings, and should not be judged historically. The Distaff comes in second with an average winning payoff of $17.09; no doubt last year's $113.80 upset victory by Spain has done much to lift that average.
Pedigree Analysis for Fleet Renee
Well, it's all over now but the shouting. The preps have been run. The pre-entry forms have been filled out, mailed, faxed, or stuffed into the Breeders' Cup ballot box.
Pedigree Analysis for Exogenous
The two major races of the weekend that served as a prelude to the Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) were supposed to help clear the picture.
While Tranquility Lake has spent the better part of her career racing on turf, the 6-year-old mare has the kind of versatile pedigree that shows why she is a proven commodity on both dirt and turf.
It's now or never. The two major preps for the Oct. 27 Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) are this weekend in Kentucky and New York, and it's time for those seeking a berth in the Distaff to deliver or pack it in.
Pompeii, winner of the Personal Ensign Handicap (gr. I) at Saratoga on Aug. 24 at 1 1/4 miles, has just the stout-distance lineage it takes to stand up to the rigors of the nine-furlong Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I).
The major players for the Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) remained on the sidelines over the past weekend, waiting for the Overbrook Spinster Stakes (gr. I) at Keeneland and the Beldame Stakes (gr. I) at Belmont Park the first weekend of October. However, a couple of horses looking to have an impact at the World Thoroughbred Championships on Oct. 27 were in action at Belmont and at Turfway Park.
The Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) has brought us some memorable showdowns between sophomore fillies and their more battle-tested elders, and this year's renewal figures to be no different.
Top turf distaffer Tranquility Lake's next race may come on the main track in an effort to prepare the the 6-year-old mare for the Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I), according to trainer Julio Canani. Eclipse Award winner Riboletta is also being pointed to the Distaff.
After lengthy discussions between trainers John and Donna Ward and owner John Oxley, it has been decided Beautiful Pleasure will race another year. Oxley said the year's goal is the Oct. 27 Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) at Belmont Park. She has not started since the 2000 edition of the race where she finished sixth.
Owner John Oxley and trainer John Ward are still discussing whether to race or retire Beautiful Pleasure. In mid-February, Oxley said March 1 was decision day, but recently he said another discussion is slated for March 8.
Trainer D. Wayne Lukas added a 16th victory to what already was a record total when Spain sprinted between rivals on Churchill Downs' final turn, then slipped through on the rail to steal the $2,161,760 Distaff (gr. I) at odds of nearly 56-1. Finishing 1 1/2 lengths behind was her stablemate, the 10-1 Surfside, who held on stubbornly after setting the early pace.
In a shocking upset to begin the XVIIth Breeders' Cup, Riboletta and Beautiful Pleasure both bombed as D. Wayne Lukas ran one-two in the Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) with Spain and Surfside.
Notes on daily activities of Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) hopefuls.
Aaron and Marie Jones' Three Chimneys Spinster Stakes (gr. I) winner Plenty of Light will miss the Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) due to a minor leg injury.
Highclere Thoroughbred Racing’s Petrushka, winner of the Irish Oaks, assumed the lead with an eighth of a mile to go and defeated Love Divine by 1 1/4 lengths in Wednesday’s Aston Upthorpe Yorkshire Oaks (Eng-I) at York racecourse in England.
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