Miesque's Approval, who has found a new gear at the ripe old age of 7, headlines a powerhouse nine-horse field for Saturday's $600,000 Shadwell Turf Mile Stakes (gr. IT) at Keeneland. With the Breeders' Cup World Championships being held at nearby Churchill Downs Nov. 4, the Shadwell figures to serve as a key prep race for the NetJets Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT).
Live Oak's homebred Miesque's Approval is in the midst of his best year to date, having won four of five starts--his last three in an row--and earning more than $700,000. That's nearly half of his $1.45 million career earnings from 37 starts.
He started the year by spoiling Hall of Fame jockey Jerry Bailey's farewell ride in winning the rich Sunshine Millions Cloverleaf Farms Turf in his seasonal debut at Gulfstream Jan. 28. A narrow loss to English Channel in the Canadian Turf Handicap in early March has been the only blemish on his record. Earlier this spring, he nipped last year's Breeders' Cup Mile winner Artie Schiller in a thriller at Keeneland in the Maker's Mark Mile (gr. IIT), so he has an affinity for the local turf course. His last pair of wins have come in the Firecracker Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. IIT) and the Sept. 9 Red Bank Stakes (gr. IIIT).
Eddie Castro will ship into Lexington for the ride aboard the Miesque's Son--Win Approval, by With Approval horse.
It won't be cakewalk for the late-running Miesque's Approval; he'll have to catch the likes of Silent Name, Remarkable News, Cosmonaut, and British Blue.
Silent Name, a son of Sunday Silence, ships to Keeneland off a pair of races where he finished behind Aragorn, the top miler on the West Coast. Winner of the one-mile Arcadia Handicap (gr. IIT) in April, Silent Name was third, beaten two lengths by Aragorn in the Shoemaker Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) in late May, then was third, beaten 4 ½-lengths in the nine-furlong Eddie Read Handicap (gr. IT) at Del Mar.
It was announced last week that Silent Name--out of the Danehill mare Danzigaway--will enter stud at Frank Stronach's Adena Springs near Versailles, Ky., at the end of his racing career. The Japan-bred colt was a multiple stakes winner in France earlier in his career. He was bred by Wertheimer et Frere and is trained by Gary Mandella.
Remarkable News, bred in Venezuela by Agropecuaria Luisiana, ran a clunker last time, finishing fifth in the Woodbine Mile presented by Bell (Can-IT). Prior to that, the 4-year-old colt ran off with the Fourstardave Handicap (gr. IIT) at Saratoga, leaving Ashkal Way in his wake. Owned by Holly Rincon, Remarkable News will have Rene Douglas aboard for the first time for trainer Angel Penna Jr.
Four-year-old Cosmonaut was fourth in the Ben Ali (gr. III) on the main track in his only effort at Keeneland during the spring meet. He shortens up to mile off efforts behind 12-furlong specialists Cacique and The Tin Man in races like the 11-furlong Man o' War Stakes (gr. IT) and 1 ¼-mile Arlington Million (gr. IT). Flying Zee Stable's son of Lemon Drop Kid
is trained by Patrick Biancone.
Juddmonte Farms' homebred Three Valleys ran seventh in the Woodbine Mile, but prior to that won the Oceanport Stakes (gr. IIIT) at 1 1/16 miles at Monmouth Aug. 6. Last year, the son of Diesis
--Skiable, by Niniski, set a course record of 1:32.21 for a mile the Del Mar Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. IIT).Shadwell Turf Mile Stakes (gr. IT), Keeneland Race Course, Saturday, Oct. 7, $600,000, one mile, 3-year-olds and up, turf, approx. post 5:40 p.m. EDT
PP - Horse - Jockey
1 - Silent Name - Victor Espinoza
2 - Miesque's Approval - Eddie Castro
3 - Aussie Rules - Garrett Gomez
4 - Remarkable News - Rene Douglas
5 - Hendrix - David Flores
6 - Cosmonaut - Julien Leparoux
7- Old Dodge - Robby Albarado
8 - British Blue - Cesar Mejia
9 - Three Valleys - Rafael Bejarano