Dubai: The annual Breeders’ Cup Thoroughbred Championships is one of the most anticipated flat race meetings in the world, and an event that is of great interest to the Dubai-owned Team Godolphin who regularly target its prestigious prizes.
This year Godolphin are relying on Terebellum, a British trained galloper trained by the legendary John Gosden, to give them a second victory in Saturday’s Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf on day two of the meeting at Keeneland, USA.
Run over 2,000 metres the race is a weight for age contest that has attracted 14 of the best female horses from around the USA in addition to raiders from the UK and Ireland, the latter being represented by the Irish 1,000 Guineas heroine Peaceful, who will be ridden by the super-talented Ryan Moore for ace handler Aidan O’Brien.
The 14-horse field is led by the Chad Brown-trained Rushing Fall who is on a hot three race winning streak and the mount of Javier Castellano, the ‘Titan of the Turf.’ While Mean Mary, like her names suggests has deadly front running abilities and is capable of controlling the speed in the hands of Luis Saez.
Other notables are the very classy Sistercharlie who is running in her third consecutive Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf, the Jessica Jane Harrington-trained Cayenne Pepper, a horse with devastating late speed and the Canadian Horse of the Year Starship Jubilee, a seven-year-old who has lost just one of her last five starts.
So where does Terebellum fit in the pecking order as she bids to secure her first Group 1 victory and reprise the feat of Wuheida who conquered the M & T in 2017 for trainer Charlie Appleby.
Gosden’s filly is a consistent performer having finished in the first five in all four of her previous appearances at Group 1 level, most notably when going down by a head to Circus Maximus in the mile Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot in June.
The mount of Frankie Dettori, who is currently in the form of his life, Terebellum was also narrowly beaten in the Group 1 Falmouth Stakes at Newmarket in July.
However, the four-year-old son the great Seas The Stars has found success at Group 2 level over a mile and a quarter in both the Prix de la Nonette at Deauville in France and Dahlia Stakes at Newmarket in the UK.
She steps back up in distance after toiling for fifth place on heavy ground in the 1,600m Group 1 Sun Chariot Stakes at Newmarket on her most recent start in October.
Assessing her chances Gosden told the Godolphin website: “She is in top form and ready for this race.
“It was very, very soft ground for Terebellum at Newmarket and she found it a little bit testing.
“Her best run was probably in the Queen Anne, when she went down a head to Circus Maximus.”
Godolphin is also represented on Saturday’s undercard, with three-year-old filly Fair Maiden (Corey Lanerie) making her return to Stakes company for Eoin Harty in the Fort Springs Stakes over six furlongs on dirt.
The Street Boss homebred was a close third on turf in the G1 Natalma Stakes as a juvenile and made an impressive switch to dirt on her seasonal return when readily winning a Churchill Downs nail-biter in September.
This year is the 37th annual Breeders’ Cup which is being held at Keeneland Race Course in Lexington, Kentucky.
Was the year when Horse racing’s World Championships were first held at Keeneland resulting in unforgettable moments like American Pharoah’s Classic win, Tepin’s Mile victory, and Found’s defeat of Golden Horn in the Turf.
Is the starting stall that has produced the most Breeders’ Cup winners, with 40 Thoroughbreds having won World Championship races after breaking from this gate.
Was the age of Calidoscopio who made history as the oldest horse to win a Breeders’ Cup race, when taking the 2012 Marathon at the age of 8.
is the number of racetracks that have hosted the Breeders’ Cup. Host sites include Hollywood Park, Aqueduct, Santa Anita, Churchill Downs, Gulfstream Park, Belmont Park, Woodbine, Arlington International, Lone Star Park, Monmouth Park, Keeneland, and Del Mar.
Are the number of races comprising the Breeders’ Cup World Championships over Nov. 6-7.
Number of winners D Wayne Lukas has won at the Breeders’ Cup the most in its history.