Multiple grade I winner Sassy Image has been taken out of consideration for the $1 million Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (gr. I) after a chip in a hind ankle was discovered following her most recent work Oct. 8 at Churchill Downs, according to a track release.
“She’s a filly that has always moved perfectly and the next morning (Oct. 9) when we saw that she was a little off we knew that something was wrong,” said Dale Romans, who conditions the filly for his brother Jerry.
Four-year-old Sassy Image (Broken Vow --Ideal Image, by Hennessy) had been given some time away from the track after tearing her left front quarter in a sixth-place finish as the favorite in the Ballerina (gr. I) at Saratoga, a race in which she leapt at the break and then bolted on the final turn. Her four-furlong breeze Oct. 8 was clocked in :48.60, the fifth fastest of 38 at the distance over a fast Churchill Downs track.
“She appeared to come out of it fine,” Dale Romans said.
The injury to Sassy Image is a major disappointment for Romans. Sassy Image has compiled a record of 5-0-1 in six starts beneath the Twin Spires, including victories in the Humana Distaff (gr. I), the Golden Rod (gr. II), the Winning Colors (gr. III), and the Pocahontas (gr. III).
“This has made me sick,” Romans said. “You have to enjoy the high points in this game because there are going to be a lot of disappointments.”
Although the injury will knock Sassy Image out of the Breeders’ Cup, she still will be offered at the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky sale Nov. 6 as a racing/broodmare prospect.
“If the new owners wanted to remove the chip then she could probably come back next year,” Romans said.
She will be consigned by Romans Racing and Sales, as agent, and will sell as Hip No. 17.