Delegator has been battling a quarter crack this week.<br><a target="blank" href="">Order This Photo</a>

Delegator has been battling a quarter crack this week.
Order This Photo

Anne M. Eberhardt

English Runners Ready to Go in BC

Delegator is one of the eight Godolphin runners in the Breeders' Cup.

Delegator, who is due to represent Godolphin in the TVG Breeders’ Cup Mile (gr. IT) on Saturday, Nov. 6, at Churchill Downs, has had a quarter crack this week.

Saeed bin Suroor, his trainer who came to the barns for the first time on Thursday after flying in from Australia where he saddled two horses in the Emirates Melbourne Cup (Aust-I) on Tuesday, said: "Delegator sustained a quarter crack on Tuesday, but it improved a lot yesterday.

"Today he looked sound, and he jogged and cantered on the turf course and looked happy, but we will see how he is tonight. So far so good."

Delegator is due to be one of the eight Godolphin runners between three trainers in the Breeders’ Cup races Friday and Saturday.

The trainer, who is responsible for six of them, added: "Delegator is in good condition and has continued to exercise."

William Buick, the young rider taking Britain by storm, visited Churchill Downs for the first time on Thursday.

He has three rides for his boss, John Gosden, who used to train in California before becoming successful back at home in England.

Buick partners Debussy in the Emirates Airline Breeders’ Cup Turf (gr. IT), Utley in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (gr. IIT), and Flood Plain in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (gr. IIT).

He said: "Utley is a nice horse. He has gone the right way, and I think he is my best chance of the weekend.

"It was a very good run in France (when fifth to Wooton Bassett in the Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere, Fr-I, at Longchamp Oct. 3 over seven furlongs) as soft ground would not be his game. This ground will be more what he wants.

"He comes here in very good form, and John is two from two in the race."

Gosden sent out Pounced to win last year’s Juvenile Turf and Donativium to win the race in 2008.

Brian Meehan, who trains out of the famous Manton Stables in England, has four runners this year. He saddled Red Rocks to win the 2006 Breeders’ Cup Turf the last time the Breeders’ Cup was at Churchill Downs.

It is his biggest team at a Breeders’ Cup, and he expressed confidence in their chances.

Dangerous Midge goes for the Breeders’ Cup Turf. "He is a horse on the upward curve now,” Meehan said. “We have always wanted to target a big prize with him and the idea came in the spring to aim him at this race.

"I think my horse has a hell of a chance. His turn of foot is most impressive. He can sometimes travel lazily, but when you ask him it is fairly electrifying.

"He always has a pair of blinkers fitted for his last piece of work, and I thought it was a good idea to put them on in the race too.

"I think back to Red Rocks nearly every day when I wake up. He came back to America the following year and won the Man o’ War (gr. IT). That was really, really special."

Dangerous Midge has won five of his 10 starts, most recently taking a group III over 11 furlongs at Newbury in September in good style by four lengths.

Meehan’s other three Breeders’ Cup runners are all 2-year-olds. Theyskens' Theory goes for the Grey Goose Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I), with Quiet Oasis in the Juvenile Fillies Turf and Mantoba in the Juvenile Turf.

The trainer said: "Theyskens' Theory is a tough filly, and I wasn’t particularly pleased with her run at Ascot (third in the Fillies’ Mile, Eng-I) as she did not fire like she did at Goodwood previously (when winning the Prestige Stakes, Eng-III)). But she came out of Ascot well, and I think she is really at the top of her game.

"Quiet Oasis is really enjoying the track, and she is in great form. I think she is a really good filly in waiting who did not get the luck at the Curragh (when fourth in the Park Stakes, Ire-III, in September). She is quite a busy filly but cool.

"Mantoba was very impressive last time (in the Houghton Conditions Stakes at Newmarket in October). He is a very lazy horse at home.

"This morning they all seemed really good, and I am happy with them all."