Mizdirection rallies on the far outside in the stretch
A full field of 14 older horses contested the $1 million Geico Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint (G1) going about 6 1/2 furlongs on the downhill turf chute at Santa Anita. Defending champion Mizdirection was sent off as the 5-2 favorite in the field of 13 off her disappointing 5th in the Just a Game (G1) at Belmont after winning the Las Cienegas (G3) at Santa Anita. In to challenge her included 9-2 Reneesgotzip, winner of the Rancho Bernardo Handicap (G3), and 5-1 Unbridled's Note, a close third in the Eddie D Stakes (G3) last out.
Reneesgotzip was gunned to a clear lead down the hill by jockey Edwin Maldonado through fractions of 21.47 and 43.36. At the 1/8 pole, Reneesgotzip still led by 1 1/2 lengths through 3/4 in 1:06.02, but Mizdirection, who stalked her in third early under jockey Mike Smith, came out 5 wide into the lane and closed with a rush to win by 1/2 a length in 1:12.25. Tightend Touchdown, who pressed the pace down the hill, closed late to dead-heat with Reneesgotzip for second money.
Left: Mizdirection heads to the winner's circle. Trainer Mike Puype said, "She loves it here, eh? She loves Santa Anita. She's 7-for-7 on the (Santa Anita) turf. She's really tenacious, but it's quite sad that she is getting on a plane tomorrow and heading for the sales (in Kentucky)."
Right: The trophy presentation for the Turf Sprint. Winning owner Jim Rome said, "One of the only things I don't like about this business is that it's a business. Mizdirection saved my racing life. The Miz ride has been one of the great experiences of my life. But the fact is before we got in business, I always had a great passion for the sport, but we got our brains beaten in and we lost a lot of money. It's so rare to have an opportunity to take money off the table. And I want to see her go out a champion. I want her off the track. I want her to have a good life as a mama, and I think the time is right to sell. It's gut-wrenching. It's tearing me up, but from a business standpoint, and this is a business, it's something we need to do."
Left: Mizdirection in the paddock with jockey Mike Smith. Smith said, "I broke better this time (compared to last year's race). Much more alert. I took advantage of the break and I took the rail right away, which is the best place to be turning right. You get a lot of momentum coming out of that turn going left. Man, she was right there. I was worried I might have been a little too close, but I'm glad I was because the lead horses weren't stopping. Reneesgotzip wouldn't give up."
Right: Mizdirection in the post parade. Puype added, "I think it would be a shame if they didn't name a graded stake after her after this. I mean, she owns a piece of the lawn. She's never been beaten down the hill. She's beaten boys twice. She'll set the Breeders' Cup record for all time on two five-month layoffs. I doubt that will ever happen again. So enough said. The mare makes me look good. She's all heart. She's all game. She knows her way."
Left: Dead heat second place finisher Reneezgotzip returns after the race. Trainer Peter Miller said, "We're disappointed, but not in the filly. She ran a winning race. The post (No. 4) cost us. Being drawn inside hurt us, but the filly ran a winning race. She just got out-nodded. She did everything she could do and Edwin rode a great race. We knew with (Tightend Touchdown) in there that he would press us and he did. I've got no complaints."
Right: Dead heat second place finisher Tightend Touchdown in the post parade. Trainer Jason Servis said, "He ran good. I'm very, very happy. From what I saw he had a great trip. I'll settle for the deadheat. This is even better than I first thought. This is a dream come true. I can see how people get hooked on this. I'm going to take him to Palm Meadows this winter and we'll make some decisions from there. He'll (run on) dirt too, so we have a lot of options. This is unbelievable. I'm elated."
Breeders' Cup Saturday Results - There were 9 races Saturday highlighted by the $5 million Classic where Mucho Macho Man won over Will Take Charge. Also on the card, Wise Dan repeated in the Mile, Groupie Doll in the Filly and Mare Sprint, and Mizdirection in the Turf Sprint. Get the results, charts, and photos for all 9 races here.
Breeders' Cup Friday Results - There were 5 races Friday highlighted by the Ladies' Classic where Beholder won the Distaff, becoming the first Juvenile Fillies winner to do so. Get the results, charts, and photos for all 5 races here.
2013 Breeders' Cup Entries -A look at the horses entered for all 14 Breeders' Cup World Championship races to be held at Santa Anita on November 1 and 2. Lots of info for each race and links to profiles for each horse along with their post position and morning line odds.
Review: Crushing the Cup 2013 - by Jim Mazur and Peter Mallett. An invaluable tool for trying to unlock the mysteries of handicapping the Breeders' Cup races. Updated for 2013.
Breeders' Cup Weather - What will the weather be like at Santa Anita Park on November 1 and 2? Here are lots of places to find out!
The Breeders' Cup Championship Day - The official page for the Breeders' Cup championship races. Just about anything you need to know about it: results, video clips, and race calls for past years, and eventually nominations, entries, and results.
Free Prep Replays - for major prep races in the Breeders' Cup Challenge. The ones with camera logos have video available.