LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - The Breeders' Cup is back in familiar surroundings at Churchill Downs, with an additional stakes race bumping the two-day program to 14 and prize money up to a record $30 million.
The star of Saturday's show was Enable and the super filly did not disappoint in the $4-million Turf. McKinzie's Pennsylvania Derby victory came after he was disqualified to second in the Grade 2 San Felipe in March.
Buick had to endure the suspense of a stewards' enquiry after contact between his mount and Uncle Benny right before the wire.
"He is the kind of horse you have to ride him the whole way". Ridden by John Velazquez, Sistercharlie gradually moved up against a very slow pace and got her nose ahead of Wild Illusion in the final strides.
The 2-year-old son of City Zip became the first to win a Breeders' Cup race with just one previous start in the 35-year history of the championship event. "To be able to do that, he had to work harder".
Game Winner also emerged as one of the year's top Juveniles.
With Charlie Appleby winning the Juvenile Turf with Line of Duty on Friday and Michael Stoute on target with Expert Eye in the Mile, it was a good meeting for British horses, less so for the other Europeans.
The Breeders' Cup is an annual event. Front-running youngsters had things their own way in the first three races of the day.
"We went to the first turn, everybody was screaming, howling, everybody was checking and clipping heels", Velazquez said of the chaotic early going in the 1 3/8-mile race on Churchill's turf track.
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Goals from Erik Lamela and Harry Kane put Spurs 3-0 up before penalties from Ruben Neves and Raul Jimenez gave the Wolves hope. Vardy, goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel and captain Wes Morgan, are expected to travel along with Puel and senior staff.
"She didn't quite come here in the form she would have past year, but she's done it".
"He was smashed up leaving the gate, which put him in the wrong position as he got the worst of it", Gosden said of the dirt in the face that Roaring Lion experienced for the first time.
"I went for the better ground and she found another gear".
"I'm thrilled, no doubt", Sadler said. "When I asked her, she exploded for home".
I'm starting my card for the $1 million Turf Sprint with the No. 11 World of Trouble (6-1).
Bob Baffert won't have his Triple Crown victor, but he has two starters, in West Coast and McKinzie, with the potential to give the trainer his fourth Breeders' Cup Classic win in the last five years. "Second time of his career - very professional". Ridden by Javier Castellano, the four-year-old colt took command shortly after the start and pulled away in the stretch while 4-5 favourite Catalina Cruiser struggled on the outside and finished well back. "Fantastic way to start", Pletcher said.
"He broke really well", Rosario said of Accelerate.
Accelerate, though, was simply too strong in the stretch and he stayed on bravely for Joel Rosario to beat the outsider Gunnevara with Thunder Snow a creditable third under Christophe Soumillon.