Dancing in Silks (left) makes his move in the Breeders' Cup Sprint.
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Dancing in Silks (left) makes his move in the Breeders' Cup Sprint.
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Anne M. Eberhardt

Dancing in Silks, 25-1, Pulls Sprint Upset

Big longshot Dancing in Silks prevails in a tight Breeders' Cup Sprint finish.

Big longshot Dancing in Silks, a 25-1 gelding by Black Minnaloushe, poked his nose out in front to win a four-horse cavalry charge in the $2-million Sentient Jet Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I) Nov. 7 at Santa Anita Park (VIDEO). Heavy favorite Zensational finished fifth.

In one of the most exciting races on the two-day Breeders’ Cup card, Dancing in Silks and jockey Joel Rosario led a cavalry charge down the center of the track, with four horses separated by less than half a length at the wire.

Following a review of the finish photo, Dancing in Silks had a nose advantage over Crown of Thorns, with Cost of Freedom a head back in third. Another nose back in fourth was Gayego, followed by favored Zensational, Fatal Bullet, Fleeting Spirit, Capt. Candyman Can, and Join in the Dance.

The winner paid $52.60, $19.20, and $12. Runner-up Crown of Thorns was worth $13.20 and $8.60, with Cost of Freedom returning $9.20.

Cost of Freedom shot to the early lead under jockey Tyler Baze and it looked as if the son of Cee’s Tizzy was going to run away from the field, setting fractions of :21.88 and :44.22. The 6-year-old gelding continued to lead in the stretch, with five-eighths of a mile completed in :55.88 before the rest of the field began to close with a rush. The final time was 1:08.14 for six furlongs over the Pro-Ride surface.

"I had a very good trip in perfect position and had a good chance outside when we got to the stretch," Rosario said. "It was very close but my horse always has his head up, so I was just hoping that would help at the finish."

"The way Zensational had been training and Gayego won the Ancient Title, it looked like a tough situation (for us)," Gaines said. "The way the post positions set up, we were able to sit off the pace and make our run. The racing gods were smiling upon us today."

"For a second, I thought I might win, but the other horse (Dancing in Silks) just kept going," said Rafael Bejarano, who was aboard Crown of Thorns. "I had a good clean trip; he just missed. My horse did a tremendous job. I was in perfect position following the winner. When I saw him move, I still had a lot of horse left, so I followed him, but the six (Dancing in Silks) never quit. It was a close finish."

"I couldn’t be more proud of my horse," trainer Richard Mandella said of Crown of Thorns. "He ran great. He’s always made me think he’s something special, and he continues to make me think that."

A 4-year-old gelding, Dancing in Silks was bred in California by Ronald E. Jex. The horse races for Ken Kinakin and is trained by Carla Gaines.

The Sprint was the fourth consecutive win in five starts this year for Dancing in Silks, who was a two-race winner during the Del Mar meet. Prior to the Breeders’ Cup Sprint, Dancing in Silks won the California Cup Sprint over the same six furlong distance at Santa Anita.