Woodbine Produces Three Breeders’ Cup Starters
(Wednesday, September 21) Woodbine hosted three Breeders’ Cup Challenge “Win and You’re In” races last weekend, with the winners of the trio of races earning guaranteed berths in the corresponding Breeders’ Cup races.
The Breeders’ Cup World Thoroughbred Championships will be held at Churchill Downs on Nov. 4-5.
Trainer Mark Casse saddled four starters in the $200,000 Natalma (G3), and it was the John Oxley owned and Casse trained Northern Passion who rallied from the back of the pack with a rail skimming ride from jockey Luis Contreras to win by 1 ¼ lengths.
The daughter of First Samurai paid $14.70 for the win, with Dayatthespa completing a $2 exacta that returned horse bettors $106.00.
The victory earned Northern Passion a starting spot in the Breeders’ Cup Fillies Turf (G2) on Nov. 4.
Trainer Todd Pletcher saddled the winner of the Summer Stakes (G3) for the second year in a row when John Velazquez piloted Finale to a ¾ of a length victory over longshot Escaper.
Owned by Mrs. John Magnier, Michael Tabor, and Derrick Smith, the two-year-old son of up and coming sire Scat Daddy earned an automatic starting spot in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G2) with the victory.
Finale paid $3.70 as the betting favorite with Escaper completing a $2 exacta that paid $40.30.
Pletcher trained last year’s Summer winner Pluck, who went on to win the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf in his next outing.
On Sunday at Woodbine, the Charles Lopresti trained Turallure angled toward the outside for the stretch drive and rallied boldly to get up and win the $1 million Ricoh Woodbine Mile (G1) in a three way photo.
The colt edged Courageous Cat by a nose, and it was just another neck back to third place finisher Right One.
The winner paid $14.90 and earned an automatic berth in the Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) on Nov. 5.
There is just one Breeders’ Cup Challenge race this weekend, the Shadwell Fillies' Mile (G1) at Newmarket on Saturday.
The winner earns a spot in the Juvenile Fillies Turf (G2).
Mark your calendars for Saturday Oct. 1.
There are ten “Win and You’re In’ races in one day, with six coming at Belmont Park and another four at Santa Anita Park.
Among the six at Belmont Park is the $750,000 Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1). Last year’s Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) winner Blame used the race as his final prep, checking in second behind Haynesfield, and then giving Zenyatta her lone career loss when he held off the mare in deep stretch to win the Classic.