From Turfway Park
With champion jockey Garrett Gomez aboard, Indescribable moved into contention approaching the final turn, put the challenge to pacesetter Whirlie Bertie, and drew off in mid-stretch to win the Kentucky Cup Distaff (gr. III) (VIDEO) by 3-1/2 lengths. Her time for the 1 1/16-mile Distaff was 1:42.92, just two-fifths of a second off the track record.
“I had a perfect trip—the kind of trip jocks dream of,” said Gomez, who had the outside post. “I just put her behind horses and let her settle down the backstretch. I got her in the clear at the three-eighths pole. I asked, and she did the rest. Very easy race to ride.”
Breaking from just inside the winner, Whirlie Bertie headed for the lead right out of the gate and took command before the first turn, with Bear Now close behind and Indescribable in mid-pack.
As the leader approached the final turn, both Bear Now and Indescribable made their moves. Asked to run, Bear Now drew even with Whirlie Bertie at the top of the turn and put her head in front as they straightened for home, but Indescribable easily powered by both on the outside in the last half-furlong.
Unforgotten closed well to finish second, leaving Whirlie Bertie a half-length behind in third, and Bear Now, the 8-5 favorite and the winner of this race last year, another three quarters of a length back in fourth.
“That was a nice race,” said Indescribable’s trainer Bill Mott. “She looked comfortable down the backstretch. She was in the bridle and traveling nicely. It was like her race in Keeneland this spring (Doubledogdare Stakes, won by 2 1/4 lengths). With her it seems like surface is key,” he said of Turfway’s Polytrack, which is also on Keeneland’s main track. “Seems like she’s figured out that this is the surface she likes. She was confusing this summer because she was running subpar races, but training better than she ever had. The Spinster (Stakes at Keeneland) is definitely a race we’ll consider.”
Indescribable was sent off the 2-1 second choice and returned $6.20, $3.60, and $2.80.
A 5-year-old daughter of Pleasant Tap—Catnip, by Flying Pastor, Indescribable now has seven wins, one second, and five thirds from 22 lifetime starts, for earnings of $474,492. She was bred and is owned by Courtlandt Farm.
Canadian shipper El Brujo, the tepid 5-2 favorite in the Sept. 26 Kentucky Cup Sprint (gr. III) (VIDEO), made a furious stretch rally under Garrett Gomez to catch Brass Bay in deep stretch and capture the $100,000 race by half a length in 1:09.04. It was the second of three stakes wins from as many mounts for Gomez, who won the Kentucky Cup Classic (gr. II) with Furthest Land one race later.
Campaigned by his breeder, Windways Farm, El Brujo broke in relaxed fashion from his rail post and settled in last place in the well-bunched field of 10. Behind early fractions of :22.00 for the quarter and :44.70 for the half set by Lookn Mighty Fast, El Brujo stayed along the rail until turning for home, when Gomez swung him outside and commenced his powerful late run.
Brass Bay, a 20-1 proposition, was prominent throughout the early running and assumed command in midstretch before being collared late by El Brujo. Turfiste (8-1) finished 1 1/4 lengths behind the runner-up and a nose in front of 15-1 shot His Greatness, who checked in fourth.
“He ran huge,” said winning trainer Malcolm Pierce, who watched the race from Woodbine, where he had four horses entered today. “I was a little worried down the backside because I didn't expect him to be that far back, but I guess Garrett knew what he was doing because he did a great job getting him up. The plans are to bring him back to Woodbine tomorrow morning. If he comes out of it really good we would probably look at the Perryville (Stakes, gr. III) in October at Keeneland.“
Turfway Park-based trainer William Connelly saddled El Brujo in Pierce’s absence.
“He showed some speed leaving the gate and I didn’t want to interfere too much with him, so I just sat up on him,” said Gomez. “When I angled him out, it was like I was on a fresh horse. He kicked on nicely. He did everything I asked of him.”
Sal Gonzalez Jr., rider of second-place finisher Brass Bay, was understandably disappointed by the outcome. “He’s got natural speed, and we tried to save all we could for the end,” he said. “I thought we were home free.”
A 3-year-old son of Candy Ride , El Brujo now has five wins, four seconds, and one third from 12 lifetime starts, for earnings of $415,956. The gelding returned $7.60 to win in the Sprint. Brass Bay paid $17.80 and $12.00 to place, while Turfiste returned $6.20 to show.