Johannesburg and jockey Michael Kinane take their walk down Victory Lane after winning the Juvenile.
In the Juvenile, Officer was sent off as the overwhelming 3-4 favorite. When the gate opened, Came Home and Officer battled each other for the lead right away, setting initial fractions of 23.61, 46.85, and 1:11.01. But this pace, mostly run into a stiff headwind down the backstretch of the one-turn event, took its toll and the pair would weaken in the final furlong. Meanwhile, Johnannesburg stalked them just a couple of lengths back in fifth and saving ground on the rail. In the stretch, Michael Kinane angled him to the outside and blew right by Officer, Came Home, and the stalking Siphonic to win by 1 1/4 lengths over fellow late-runner Repent who came from as far back as ninth. It was another 1 1/4 lengths back to third place Siphonic. Final time was 1:42.27 for the 1 1/16 mile event. Officer, the 0.75-1 favorite, faded to fifth beaten by a disappointing 5 1/4 lengths.
Pgm Horse Jockey Win Place Show 3 Johannesburg Kinane 16.40 8.60 6.00 10 Repent D'Amico 25.00 13.40 1 Siphonic Bailey 7.90 Winning Time: 1:42.27 $2 Exacta 3-10 530.00 $2 Trifecta 3-10-1 3.665.00 $2 Superfecta 3-10-1-6 56,927.00Results Chart from Equibase
Johannesburg with Michael Kinane up celebrating his first Breeders' Cup win. Kinane said: "He's been a champion every step of the way through the year. We thought that he was made for the dirt. He proved it today. The plan today was to lay a little off the pace. (The distance) was a little bit of a concern because he had never been beyond six furlongs. That's why we wanted to stay close. This horse was six-for-six and I think the Americans overlooked him a little bit."
The winner's circle was a total mob scene as the connections and the European press all rushed in to celebrate.
The trophy presentation. Owner Michael Tabor said: "It's just very nice to have a very nice horse." He said he may send him to either the English 2000 Guineas or the Kentucky Derby. Immediately after the race, British bookmakers William Hill announced that Johannesburg is 7-2 for the Derby and 9-2 for the Guineas.
Johannesburg in the post parade. Trainer Aidan O'Brien said: "He was always a serious horse from day one. He's a wonderful horse. He's a natural in everything he does. He has such speed, which we knew was his forte. The way he travels is something beautiful. Obviously, he can go anywhere."
Second place finisher Repent in the post parade. Trainer Ken McPeek said: "He ran super. See you in May. He's every bit as good as Tejano Run; maybe better. He'll be formidable. This horse is going to be a big part of the Triple Crown." Jockey Tony D'Amico added, "He was the second best today, but he ran his heart out. If I would have had another sixteenth of a mile, I might have caught that horse."
Third place finisher Siphonic. Jockey Jerry Bailey said: "He ran superb. He stayed down on that dead rail, but he kept on running. I was forced to stay there and couldn't move. I was trapped. I got about three feet off of it, but couldn't get out any further. It was just a bang up race for him."
Heavy favorite Officer faded to finish fifth. Trainer Bob Baffert said: "Especially with the head wind, when I saw them cooking down the backside, I didn't like that at all. He didn't leave (the break) well - he came back with paint on his shoulder from banging into the side of the gate. He was behind and then jumped into it from behind and got rolling. He jumped into a speed duel. I wish they would have cut him off but the speed duel just cooked him. With the inside post and a young horse like that, I knew he was going to get into the race right away. I don't blame Victor (Espinoza); the horse was really keen. You need a lot of luck to win a Breeders' Cup race, a good horse and a lot of luck. It wasn't our day. The winner looked awesome. He had the perfect style today. He (Officer) is still a good horse. I'm very disappointed."
Overbrook Farm's Jump Start had to be pulled up after the wire and was vanned off. His jockey Pat Day said: "He started travelling really bad at the 1/8 pole so I tried to pull him up slowly. He's been a good patient thus far." He sustained a condylar fracture of his left front fetlock joint in the running of the Breeders' Cup Juvenile, and was scheduled for surgery at noon Sunday. Trainer D. Wayne Lukas said the injury was likely career ending.
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Photos ©2001, Cindy Pierson Dulay and Terence Dulay