Aussie Rules wins first American start in Shadwell Mile.<br><a target="blank" href="">Order This Photo</a>

Aussie Rules wins first American start in Shadwell Mile.
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Anne M. Eberhardt

Aussie Rules Kicks Home in Shadwell Turf Mile

Aussie Rules, who broke last in the nine-horse field, was determined under Garrett Gomez and drew away late to win his first start in the United States, the $600,000 Shadwell Turf Mile (gr. IT) at Keeneland Saturday.

The 3-year-old Danehill colt, trained by Aidan O'Brien, spurted to the lead from fourth inside the eighth pole and showed quite a final kick to win by 1 3/4 lengths. A host of others battled it out for second.

"Aidan sent him over ready to run," Gomez said, "and he gave me some great instructions. He didn't jump away very well. He was always traveling real well. I just had to find a place for him to go when we turned for home.

"He accelerated and ran right by them. He's a really nice horse."

A photo showed Remarkable News got second by a nose over Brazilian-bred Old Dodge, who finished a head in front of Miesque's Approval and Cosmonaut, who finished in a dead heat for fourth. It was another nose to sixth-place finisher Three Valleys, with favored Silent Name seventh.

Aussie Rules - owned by Mrs. John Magnier, Michael Tabor, and Faisal Salman - won the Gainsborough French Two Thousand Guineas (Fr-I) this year but then had not hit the board in his next four races, all group I events against top company in Europe. Aussie Rules, who added blinkers and raced with Lasix for the first time, improved to four wins in 11 starts while bumping his earnings to $874,570 with Saturday's winning share of $372,000.

"Probably the ground came up in his favor for the first time," said T.J. Comefort, O'Brien's assistant. "The horses he's been taking on in Europe have been good, and he's just been knocking on the door. Today, he proved that he's just as good."

He said O'Brien would make the decision on whether Aussie Rules continues on to the NetJets Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) next month.

Old Dodge made the lead out of the gate and hung tough a long way after setting fractions of :23 4/5, :47 4/5 and 1:11 2/5, still having the lead down the stretch with Remarkable News the other looking to have a shot to win the race. But Aussie Rules and Gomez were just starting to hit their best stride.

Aussie Rules paid $11.80, $6.60, and $5.60 while Remarkable News returned $7.60 and $8. Old Dodge paid $15.60 to show.

Aussie Rules ran the mile in 134.23.

It was over at the start for Silent Name, according to his trainer.

"He completely missed the break, and there was no pace," said Gary Mandella. "Once he was last, you weren't going to go up 15 wide. He just had to sit and save ground. He did the best he could. These horses are too good to go :48 and give them 12 lengths."

Hendrix and British Blue trailed the field.

(Chart, Equibase)