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Rick Samuels

Goldikova Repeats as Top Female on Turf

Three-time Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) winner breezes to second championship in a row

Wertheimer and Frere’s Goldikova doubled up Jan. 17 at the Eclipse Awards, winning the top Turf Female statue for the second year in a row. She received 212 first-place votes, proving she doesn’t need many trips to North America to have an impact on the United States racing picture.

Not only did Goldikova win the $2 million TVG Breeders’ Cup Mile (gr. IT) Nov. 6 at Churchill Downs, she won the race for the third straight year to become the only horse in history to win a World Championships race three times.

Then 5, French-bred Goldikova, by Anabaa out of the Blushing Groom mare Born Gold, won four of five 2010 starts before the Breeders’ Cup Mile, including the Qatar Prix de la Foret (Fr-I) Oct. 3. She broke a European standard with that victory, which marked the 11th group or grade I win of her career. Her European campaign coupled with the Breeders’ Cup Mile victory was enough to earn her the European Horse of the Year crown at the Cartier Awards last December.

Trained by Freddy Head and ridden by Olivier Peslier, Goldikova won the Mile in typical style, coming from off the pace and blowing by legitimate competition. Though her U.S. appearances have been limited, her running style and ability to find the wire first have made her a fan favorite.

Just two days after the Breeders’ Cup Mile Gerard Wertheimer, in attendance at the Keeneland November breeding stock sale, announced Goldikova would remain in training with her ultimate 2011 goal the Breeders’ Cup Mile.

“They love to see her run, and they never will get another one like her,” said Head, who won the Mile in 1987-88 as a jockey aboard Miesque.

The 2010 Mile field was considered one of the best of the two-day Championships, having drawn Gio Ponti , The Usual Q. T., Paco Boy, and Court Vision , respectively the second- through fifth-place finishers behind Goldikova, as well as Proviso, a four-time grade I winner and Eclipse finalist.

First-Place Vote Totals:

Goldikova, 212; Proviso, 15; Tuscan Evening, 11.