Bordonaro, Pure as Gold in Ancient Title Clash

Bordonaro and Pure as Gold, both possible TVG Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I) contenders, are among six that will contest the $250,000 Ancient Title Breeders' Cup Stakes (gr. I) over six furlongs at Santa Anita's Oak Tree meeting Saturday.

Bordonaro, victorious in eight of nine starts before being upset by Pure as Gold as the 4-5 favorite in Del Mar's Bing Crosby Handicap (gr. I) on July 30, will attempt to get back on the winning track.

Patrick Valenzuela, unbeaten in three rides aboard the lightly-raced 5-year-old gelding Bordonaro, will be back aboard after the likely favorite drew the favorable outside post. Trained by Bill Spawr for Fred Carrillo and Daniel Cassella, Bordonaro has earned $522,164 from a career mark of 8 wins in 11 starts.

Pure as Gold registered his upset in the Crosby at odds of 23-1 while making his first start since being claimed by trainer Jack Carava for $100,000 on behalf of La Canada Stable. He subsequently ran second to Siren Lure in the Pat O'Brien Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II) at Del Mar on Aug. 20. Jon Court retains the mount atop the 4-year-old gelding who has banked $461,444 from a 7-3-1 record in 18 career starts.

Court was aboard the Washington bred when Alex Solis, riding Bordonaro, claimed his horse was struck in the head by Court's whip in the stretch run of the Crosby. Stewards disallowed the objection and allowed Pure as Gold's half-length victory to stand.

Siren Lure, winner of six of his seven starts including the Triple Bend (gr. I), worked six furlongs at Hollywood Wednesay in a bullet 1:13 but will not run Saturday.

"The horse went well and he'll train up to the Breeders' Cup," said trainer Art Sherman, who elected to pass despite the fact that the Sprint would mark the 5-year-old gelding's first race in more than two months. "I think he'll thrive from the layoff," Sherman said. "He'll come into the race fresh."

Battle Won, who finished a fast-closing third in the Crosby, is also missing in the Ancient Title. Trainer Mike Mitchell said the gelding would be rested for a return to racing next year.

$250,000 Ancient Title Breeders' Cup Stakes (gr. I, Race 9, 4:30 p.m.), 3 & Up, 6 Furlongs
PP. Horse, Jockey
1. Jungle Prince (KY), Agapito Delgadillo
2. Spellbinder (KY), Corey S. Nakatani
3. Pure as Gold (WA), Jon K. Court
4. Thor's Echo (CA), David Cohen
5. Zanzibar (ARG), Jose Valdivia, Jr.
6. Bordonaro (CA), Patrick A. Valenzuela
Each assigned 124 pounds.