Road to the 2022 Breeders’ Cup: Turf Tests at Saratoga, Churchill Highlight Weekend

Road to the 2022 Breeders’ Cup: Turf Tests at Saratoga, Churchill Highlight Weekend

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The Road to the 39th annual Breeders’ Cup World Championships rolls on as August kicks into excessive gear, with a brand new twist to the Problem Collection schedule ensuing from the closure of one among North America’s iconic racetracks.

Arlington Worldwide Racecourse held its final meet throughout summer time 2021 within the north Chicago suburbs, winding its historic run down in entrance of sorrowful spectators after its sale by father or mother firm Churchill Downs Inc. to the Chicago Bears as the location of a deliberate NFL stadium and leisure advanced. The observe’s signature raceday, normally held in mid-August, was showcased for one remaining time final Aug. 14, highlighted by the Arlington Million Stakes (renamed in 2021 because the Mr. D Stakes in honor of Arlington’s proprietor Richard Duchossois, who died in January 2022) and the Beverly D. Stakes.

In a considerably stunning improvement, Churchill Downs Inc. introduced earlier this 12 months that each the Arlington Million and Beverly D. could be transferred to the father or mother observe in Louisville, Ky., to be held beneath the Twin Spires Aug. 13. So, this Saturday two of essentially the most prestigious turf races within the sport will as soon as once more be entrance and middle on the calendar, albeit with some changes (two different turf graded stakes previously held at Arlington and initially scheduled to switch won’t be run this 12 months as Churchill Downs continues to nourish and groom its new grass course).

The $500,000, Grade 1 Beverly D. is a “Win and You’re In” Problem Collection qualifier for the Maker’s Mark Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf Nov. 5 at Keeneland. The $1 million, Grade 1 Arlington Million shouldn’t be a Problem Collection race this 12 months however has a protracted and wealthy historical past of sending its prime runners on to succeed on the World Championships, primarily within the Longines Breeders’ Cup Turf.

One other main turf race and Problem Collection qualifier can also be set for Saturday, and it has confirmed to be a really influential prep in its personal proper. The $500,000, Grade 1 Fourstardave Handicap at Saratoga Race Course presents an expenses-paid berth to the FanDuel Breeders’ Cup Mile Nov. 5.

The Fourstardave shall be televised on the NYRA present “Saratoga Dwell,” proven on FS2 and FS1. The Arlington Million and Beverly D. additionally will air on “Saratoga Dwell” as bonus protection for Aug. 13.

There may be one different Breeders’ Cup qualifier is on faucet for the weekend, held on Sunday, Aug. 14 abroad at Deauville Racecourse in France. The Group 1 Prix du Haras de Fresnay-Le-Buffard Jacques Le Marois can also be a “Win and You are In” race for the FanDuel Mile.

Right here’s some background on the Fourstardave, Beverly D., Arlington Million, and different essential races this weekend:

Fourstardave Handicap

The one-mile Fourstardave was added to the Breeders’ Cup “Win and You are In” Problem Collection Introduced by America’s Greatest Racing in 2019. First run in 1985 as the Daryl’s Pleasure Stakes, it was renamed in 1996 after its two-time winner (1990-’91), generally known as “The Sultan of Saratoga.” The Fourstardave is without doubt one of the highlights of Saratoga’s summer time race meet, and it is additionally been a really influential race on the Breeders’ Cup beginning again in 1985, the second 12 months of the World Championships. Mourjane completed third within the Turf at Aqueduct and went on to win the Daryl’s Pleasure in ’86.

In 1989, Steinlen gained the Daryl’s Pleasure Stakes two begins previous to a victory within the Arlington Million (see beneath); he tallied a win within the Breeders’ Cup Mile that fall and gained the Eclipse Award as champion turf male. And in 1993, the sensational Lure romped by three lengths within the Daryl’s Pleasure two begins earlier than scoring a repeat win within the Mile. Posting two Breeders’ Cup wins and greater than $2.5 million in earnings, the Shug McGaughey-trained Lure was voted into the  Racing Corridor of Fame in 2013.

Three years later, one other horse scored the Fourstardave-Breeders’ Cup Mile double – the hard-knocking Da Hoss. That Michael Dickinson-trained gelding outlined braveness after his ’96 Mile win as he was sidelined for almost two years earlier than coming again and improbably successful one other Breeders’ Cup Mile in 1998.

Leap forward to the mid-2000s and champion and eventual Kentucky Derby-winning sire Leroidesanimaux gained the Fourstardave in 2005 and completed second to Artie Schiller in that 12 months’s Mile. And 9-10 years in the past, the Fourstardave was an integral a part of two Horse of the 12 months campaigns for the ever-popular Smart Dan. Mort Fink’s gelding scored back-to-back wins within the Fourstardave and within the Breeders’ Cup Mile in each 2012 and 2013. Throughout a span from October 2011 till his retirement in 2015, Smart Dan gained 17 of 19 begins and was second twice by margins of a head and 1 ¼ lengths, and he was undefeated on turf – actually one of the vital spectacular peak-form runs by a racehorse this century.

The Fourstardave-Mile linkage remained robust in the course of the second half of the 2010s. In 2016 and 2017, a pair of top-class turf milers gained each races: Vacationer and World Approval, respectively. Dwell Oak Plantation’s World Approval was honored on the Eclipse Awards as 2017 champion turf male for his marketing campaign.

In 2019, the Mark Casse-trained filly Obtained Stormy supplied one of many summer time’s highlights when she gained the Fourstardave one week after successful a listed stakes for fillies and mares at Saratoga. Obtained Stormy would go on to complete second within the Mile that fall at Santa Anita Park and are available again to complete second within the 2020 Fourstardave. Obtained Stormy then, extremely, got here again to win the Fourstardave once more in 2021, scoring a 12.50-1 upset. The favored racemare completed up her profession with a stable fifth-place run within the 2021 FanDuel Mile Introduced by PDJF.

Beverly D. Stakes

The Beverly D. was first run in 1987 and was held at 1 3/16 miles from 1988 till its finale at Arlington; will probably be held at 1 1/8 miles at Churchill this 12 months. Just like the Arlington Million (see beneath), the Beverly D. was not run in 1998 and 1999, and 1999 at Gulfstream Park marked the inaugural Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf. A number of completed fillies and mares gained the Beverly D. in the course of the Nineteen Nineties, however just one made a giant impression on the Breeders’ Cup: world traveler Hatoof. That English One Thousand Guineas winner gained the 1994 Beverly D., defeating Corridor of Famer Flawlessly, and ran second to Tikkanen within the Breeders’ Cup Turf at Churchill Downs, the ultimate race in a profession that noticed her win graded/group stakes on 4 continents.  

By way of the 2000s, many Beverly D. starters went on to run within the Filly and Mare Turf, with the most effective exhibiting coming from Movie Maker, who was second in each races in 2006. Advertising and marketing Combine repeated that runner-up double in 2012. And in 2013, a European invader broke via to take each occasions. Dank made her first home begin within the Beverly D. and was despatched off at 3.20-1 odds, which appeared like manna from the heavens to her backers after she romped dwelling by 4 ¼ lengths. The Sir Michael Stoute-trained filly didn’t begin once more till the Filly and Mare Turf at Santa Anita, the place she scored by a half-length because the 3-2 favourite. Dank solely made two begins within the U.S. in 2013, however these two have been ok to earn her the Eclipse Award as champion turf feminine. She completed fourth within the 2014 Filly and Mare Turf.

In 2015, Watsdachances and Stephanie’s Kitten have been elevated to first and second, respectively, within the Beverly D. after Secret Gesture was disqualified to 3rd after drifting out late. Watsdachances went on to complete sixth within the Filly and Mare Turf, however Stephanie’s Kitten gained the race at Keeneland to cap off a $4.2 million-earning profession which will place her within the Corridor of Fame within the years to return.

The 2017 Beverly D. winner, Dacita, ran a stable fourth within the Filly and Mare Turf at Del Mar after which bought for $1.85 million days later on the Fasig-Tipton public sale in Kentucky as a broodmare prospect. And in 2018, the Beverly D. was a part of a 4-year-old filly’s championship season that additionally gave followers a lot to get pleasure from in 2019.

Sistercharlie, already a twin Grade 1 winner within the U.S. by August 2018, unleashed her patented late kick to win by a half-length at Arlington, after which was rested for two 1/2 months by coach Chad Brown earlier than returning within the Maker’s Mark Filly and Mare Turf at Churchill Downs. The Irish-bred thrilled followers beneath the Twin Spires with one other closing rally, this time nipping European invader Wild Phantasm by a neck. Sistercharlie was a straightforward choose by Eclipse Award voters for 2018 champion turf feminine, and proprietor Peter Brant introduced his mare again for her 5-year season in 2019. 

After successful the Diana Stakes at Saratoga for the second straight 12 months, Sistercharlie shipped to higher Chicago and simply repeated within the Beverly D., besting British invader Awesometank by three lengths. She then gained the Flower Bowl Stakes at Belmont Park in September and was closely favored at 4-5 odds to repeat within the Maker’s Mark Filly and Mare Turf held at Santa Anita. Sistercharlie rallied late within the Filly and Mare Turf however needed to accept third; she would race three extra instances with out successful in 2020 (together with a sixth-place effort within the Filly and Mare Turf) however nonetheless additional embellished what are arguably Racing Corridor of Fame credentials. Each the Beverly D. and the Arlington Million weren’t held in 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic, and final 12 months’s Beverly D. winner, Coolmore-owned Santa Barbara, tragically died in September earlier than she had an opportunity to shine on the Breeders’ Cup.

Prix du Haras de Fresnay-Le-Buffard Jacques Le Marois

The Jacques Le Marois, held at 1,600 meters (about one mile) on turf, was added to the Breeders’ Cup Problem Collection in 2010. The race has a wealthy historical past nevertheless, and has been intertwined with the World Championships from the very starting, as 1984 Jacques Le Marois winner Lear Fan – later an influential sire – shipped to California and completed seventh within the inaugural Breeder’s Cup Mile at Hollywood Park.

In 1987 and 1988, the Corridor of Famer Miesque, among the finest turf horses of any period, gained the Jacques Le Marois and the Breeders’ Cup Mile for jockey Freddie Head and homeowners the Niarchos Household. Her Breeders’ Cup wins got here at Hollywood Park (1987) and Churchill Downs (1988) by a mixed 7 ¼ lengths, and he or she acquired the Eclipse Award as champion turf feminine each years.

Spinning World additionally scored the Jacques Le Marois-Breeders’ Cup Mile double in 1997 (successful the French race in 1996 as effectively), and Six Perfections did the identical in 2003. The regally bred Banks Hill is one other notable previous winner; she captured the Jacques Le Marois in her 4-year-old season of 2002, a 12 months after successful the third version of the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf the 12 months earlier than.

One other Corridor of Famer, Goldikova, gained the 2009 Jacques Le Marois in the course of the second season of her wonderful three-year run of Breeders’ Cup Mile wins. She was educated by the aforementioned Breeders’ Cup Mile-winning jockey Freddie Head. Goldikova got here up simply quick in her bid for a fourth straight Mile win in 2011, ending third at Churchill Downs in an all-time thriller gained by 64.80-1 longshot Courtroom Imaginative and prescient.

Since Goldikova’s remaining Breeders’ Cup look, the most effective end by a Jacques Le Marois winner within the Mile got here in 2012, when Excelebration completed fourth. Circus Maximus, third within the 2020 Jacques Le Marois, completed second in an exciting Breeders’ Cup Mile at Keeneland, shedding to longshot stablemate Order of Australia by a neck.

Different weekend races:

The Arlington Million Stakes has been a cornerstone of American racing since its inaugural operating on account of its record-breaking seven-figure purse and its first winner, future Corridor of Famer John Henry (who additionally gained the 1984 Million). John Henry didn’t race within the debut Breeders’ Cup Turf in 1984, and the primary Million winner to make an impression within the Breeders’ Cup was 1986 winner Estrapade, who completed third in that fall’s Breeders’ Cup Turf at Santa Anita Park. Manila, winner of the 1986 Turf and that 12 months’s Eclipse Award winner as champion turf male, scored within the 1987 Arlington Million, which might show to be his remaining race as he was retired days after the race after struggling an harm. The son of Lyphard gained 10 out of his remaining 11 races, and Theatrical, the horse who ran second to him within the 1986 Turf and third within the ’87 Million, would go on to win the ’87 Turf and the Eclipse Award. Manila was inducted into the Racing Corridor of Fame in 2008.

As famous above, Steinlen gained the 1989 Arlington Million as a part of a sensational marketing campaign that netted him the Eclipse Award as champion turf male at 12 months’s finish. He was really shortened up two begins later for his Breeders’ Cup look, and took the Mile by three-quarters of a size at Gulfstream Park.

With Approval, Canada’s Horse of the 12 months in 1989, completed second in each the 1990 Arlington Million and the Breeders’ Cup Turf. Two years later, an identical occasion occurred, as three-time Canadian champion Sky Basic took runner-up honors within the Million and Breeders’ Cup Turf, shedding by a head and a nostril, respectively. Nonetheless, Sam-Son Farm’s Sky Basic acquired the Eclipse Award as champion turf male in 1992. Champion Paradise Creek, winner of the 1994 Million, took third in that 12 months’s Turf (and completed second within the 1992 Breeders’ Cup Mile).

There was little crossover between the Million and Breeders’ Cup Turf for the following a number of years, and the Arlington Million was not held in 1998 and 1999. In 2003, two horses from the Arlington Million – first-place finisher Storming House and winner Sulamani – have been despatched off as the 2 post-time favorites within the Breeders’ Cup Turf at 2-1 and three.10-1, respectively. They exited the Million having escaped catastrophe, when Storming House ducked out sharply on the end line and unseated rider Gary Stevens in a horrific end that resulted in Storming House’s disqualification. Each Sulamani and Storming House gained their subsequent races after the Million in Grade 1 stakes, however completed fifth and seventh at Santa Anita in arguably essentially the most thrilling race in Breeders’ Cup historical past: the dead-heat end between Excessive Chaparral and Johar.

In 2004, eventual champion turf male Kitten’s Pleasure completed runner-up to Higher Speak Now within the Breeders’ Cup Turf because the 7-10 favourite, and the following summer time Kitten’s Pleasure ran second to Powerscourt at 9-10 odds within the 2005 Million, which was his remaining race earlier than occurring to a profitable stud profession that ended together with his dying this summer time (Powerscourt had completed first within the 2004 Million however was disqualified).

Gio Ponti, a cinch future Corridor of Famer, was an everyday presence each at Arlington Park and the World Championships in the course of the the 21st Century’s first decade. The three-time champion made his first begin within the Million a successful one in 2009, scoring by 1 ¼ lengths. He would go on to complete second to famous person Zenyatta within the ’09 Breeders’ Cup Basic at Santa Anita. In 2010, Gio Ponti returned to Arlington however couldn’t stand up to European invader Debussy’s late push and completed second within the Million by a half-length. That autumn, he would once more accept second behind a famous person, this time to Goldikova within the Breeders’ Cup Mile. In 2011, Gio Ponti returned to contest the identical two races once more. He completed second to Cape Blanco within the Arlington Million over a rain-saturated turf course, after which fourth within the Mile behind Courtroom Imaginative and prescient, Turallure, and Goldikova within the thriller at Churchill Downs talked about above.

Lastly, in 2012 a horse achieved the Arlington Million-Breeders’ Cup Turf double. Little Mike was a hard-knocking gelding who solely knew one option to win – take the lead early and see how far he may go. He entered the Arlington Million in career-best kind, having gained the Grade 1 Woodford Reserve Turf Basic and ending third within the Grade 1 Shoemaker Mile. He made his first begin at 1 ¼ miles within the Million and, beneath a skillful journey from Ramon Dominguez, managed to hold his pace farther than ever earlier than to win by 1 ½ lengths. Little Mike then pale badly in his subsequent begin, the 1 ½-mile Joe Hirsch Turf Basic Invitational, defeated by 28 ½ lengths. That made his subsequent presence within the 1 ½-mile Breeders’ Cup Turf at Santa Anita a curiosity to many bettors, however Little Mike, once more with Dominguez aboard and coming from barely off the tempo for a change, rewarded his trustworthy followers at odds of 17.30-1 with a half-length win over Level of Entry.

Magician, winner of the 2013 Turf, completed second in an upset to Hardest Core within the 2014 Million, whereas The Pizza Man and Huge Blue Kitten, first and second within the 2015 Million, completed fifth and third, respectively, in a tricky Longines Breeders’ Cup Turf that fall at Keeneland. In 2017, Seashore Patrol gained the Arlington Million with an attention grabbing rush via the stretch after monitoring simply off the early tempo. The Chad Brown trainee then took the Joe Hirsch Turf Basic at Belmont earlier than contesting the Longines Turf, the place he usual one other pace-stalking journey and took the lead briefly within the lane, solely to complete a half-length in need of European invader Talismanic in a valiant effort.

Three years in the past, a second horse achieved the Arlington Million-Breeders’ Cup Turf double, each races serving as key achievements in a Horse of the 12 months marketing campaign. At all times extremely regarded, the Chad Brown-trained Bricks and Mortar had returned after greater than a 12 months away from racing on account of accidents in December of 2018 and reeled off 5 consecutive wins in the course of the subsequent 9 months previous to the Million, together with three Grade 1 stakes. He made it six in a row with a late-running half-length rating at Arlington. By the point Breeders’ Cup weekend arrived at Santa Anita, a number of horse racing scribes have been touting Bricks and Mortar as a Horse of the 12 months candidate in a 12 months that lacked a standout 3-year-old and older male grime horse. Bricks and Mortar concluded his profession with a seventh consecutive win within the Longines Turf, edging longshot United by a head after one other livid rally, and certainly was voted Horse of the 12 months for 2019 (together with champion turf male) on the Eclipse ceremony two months later.

As famous above, the Arlington Million was not held in 2020, and final 12 months’s upset winner Two Emmys didn’t run within the Breeders’ Cup. The race shall be shortened from its conventional 1 ¼ miles to 1 1/8 miles for its first operating at Churchill this Saturday.

Amongst different graded stakes this weekend, again at Saratoga, a number of winners of Saturday’s Saratoga Particular Stakes for 2-year-olds have gone on to run effectively in latest editions of the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, together with Union Rags, who was second to Hansen in 2011. (Favourite Trick gained each races in 1997 and was voted Horse of the 12 months as a juvenile.)

One other race this weekend with some Breeders’ Cup crossover is the Yellow Ribbon Handicap at Del Mar, a turf race for fillies and mares. The superbly-bred Intercontinental gained the Yellow Ribbon in 2005 (then generally known as the Palomar Handicap) for Bobby Frankel earlier than defeating Ouija Board and several other different top-class females in that fall’s Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf at Belmont Park. And the 2017 Yellow Ribbon winner, Cambodia, completed third within the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf at Del Mar earlier than coming again to win the Yellow Ribbon once more in 2018.

Additionally at Del Mar, the six-furlong Sorrento Stakes for 2-year-old fillies served because the coming-out get together for Champagne Room in 2016, because the Peter Eurton-trained filly broke her maiden within the Grade 2 stakes, making her second profession begin. Three races later, Champagne Room scored a 33.60-1 upset win within the 14 Palms Vineyard Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies at Santa Anita. She acquired the Eclipse Award as champion 2-year-old filly of 2016. The Greatest Pal Stakes for 2-year-old males, the companion race to the Sorrento, served because the coming-out get together for eventual 2009 champion juvenile male Lookin At Fortunate, second in that fall’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, and in 2015 one other future juvenile champion took the Greatest Pal highway to the Breeders’ Cup, when Nyquist took the Grade 2 stakes because the second of eight consecutive wins to start his profession, together with the Juvenile and the 2016 Kentucky Derby. Final 12 months’s Greatest Pal winner, Pappacap, ran second behind Corniche within the TVG Juvenile Introduced by Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance.

Lastly, the 6 ½-furlong Daring Enterprise Stakes at Woodbine has been gained by a number of Canadian-based Sovereign Award-winning sprinters via the years, typically a number of instances by the most effective of the most effective. A type of champions, Deadly Bullet, gained his first of back-to-back Daring Ventures in 2008, previous to operating second behind Midnight Lute within the ’08 Breeders’ Cup Dash.

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