Even-money Favorite Middleburg had been knocking at the door of graded stakes success in his three previous starts and finally broke through Aug. 23 at Monmouth Park in the Cliff Hanger Stakes (gr. IIIT).
Bert and Diana Firestone have retired their four-time grade I winner Winchester from racing for stallion duty.
Winchester swept past favored Paddy O'Prado in deep stretch to comfortably win the $500,000 Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational Stakes (gr. IT) on a yielding Belmont Park Widener Turf Course Oct. 2.
Winchester registered his first stakes win since taking the 2008 Secretariat Stakes (gr. IT) when he posted a 21-1 stunner in the $400,000 Woodford Reserve Manhattan Handicap (gr. IT) at Belmont Park June 5.
MAHUBAH'S CORNER, by Avalyn Hunter
Winchester, winner of the Secretariat Stakes (gr. IT) is part of an exceptionally strong contingent of European turf runners this year. The son of Theatrical may be headed for the Emirates Airline Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. IT). If he wins, Theatrical will become the first Turf winner to sire a Turf winner.
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