The Breeders' Distaff actually is quite simple this year: Azeri vs. the East.
Take Charge Lady, runner-up in the Gazelle Handicap (gr. I), provided some off-track excitement Sept. 22 in the distaff division of the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships.
The Ruffian Handicap (gr. I) put two horses on the Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) trail. One enters the hunt for the first time, while the other is returning to the chase.
Goldolphin Racing's Imperial Gesture became one to watch in the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Champion distaff division when she won the Gazelle Handicap (gr. I) in near gate-to-wire fashion Sept. 7.
Belterra is being taken out of training and will miss the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships. Wagering on the Unbridled filly in the Breeders' Cup Future Wager has been suspended.
- By Dan Liebman
A pall was cast on the 18th Breeders' Cup before it could even start when Exogenous flipped, got her foot caught in the winner's circle rail, and eventually had to be sedated and removed from the tunnel leading to the racetrack.
Goodbye, Breeders' Cup. Hello, World Thoroughbred Championships. America's biggest day of racing is now the world's biggest day of racing. For the first time since its inception, racing's Greatest Show on Earth will not be dominated by American-based horses. The two largest international powerhouses--Godolphin and the Coolmore group--are not only heading to the World Thoroughbred Championships en masse, they are bringing all their heavy artillery. And this year, that means an array of European stars never before seen on one card, especially in the United States.
Never underestimate the handicapping abilities of Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel. "I think the 3-year-olds are better than the older horses and I'm very confident heading into the race," Frankel said in the days leading up to the Oct. 6 Beldame Stakes (gr. I) at Belmont Park.
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.
Breeders' Cup Distaff notes for Oct. 31.
That collective gasp was the connections of the other Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) entrants when owners Aaron and Marie Jones decided to pony up the $400,000 to supplement Riboletta. The big check they wrote changed the whole complexion of the race.
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