“We brought two good fillies and I thought that they were very close,” Lukas said after Spain ($1,227,220) and Surfside ($472,000) picked up $1,699,200 from the $2.36 million purse. It was Lukas’ fourth Distaff victory and his 16th victory in a Breeders’ Cup race.
‘Power Wasn’t There’
Surfside, ridden by Pat Day, broke on top and led until Spain passed her on the outside approaching the eighth pole. Spain won by 1 1/2 lengths, with Heritage of Gold another 1 1/2 lengths back in the nine-horse field. The winning time was 1:47 3/5 for the 1 1/8 miles.
Asked if he knew it was the other Lukas horse that he passed, winning jockey Victor Espinoza, said, “Yes, but I had to do it. I wanted to win the race.”
“I’m shocked,” said Chris McCarron, Riboletta’s rider. “I have felt the power under me. That power was not there today.”
“She did exactly what he (trainer David Vance) said she would do,” said John Velazquez after riding Caressing to a half-length win over Platinum Tiara. She’s a Devil Due was third in the 12-horse Juvenile Fillies field. Favored Raging Fever finished sixth.
Caressing raced fifth until the turn for home, moved to third with an eighth-mile remaining then stormed into lead to win in 1:42 4/5 for the 1 1/16 miles.
Dream Come True
“Neil Drysdale gave me a heck of an opportunity,” Stevens said after winning the Mile aboard War Chant. Until last month, Stevens had not ridden for nine months because of arthritic knees. “I’m ecstatic. I’m in shock just being here today. It’s a dream come true.”
War Chant got up in the final strides for a neck win over North East Bound, with France-based Dansili third and Affirmed Success fourth in the 14-horse field. The first four finishers were separated by a neck and two noses. The winning time was 1:34 3/5.
Kona Gold finally got the job done. He finished third in the 1998 Sprint and second in the race last year. The 6-year-old gelding passed pace-setting Caller One in the deep stretch and then held off 4-year-old filly Honest Lady. Bet On Sunshine, an 8-year-old gelding, finished third in the 14-horse field.
Jockey Alex Solis got his first Breeders’ Cup victory aboard Kona Gold.
Perfect Sting closed to win the 1 3/8 Filly & Mare Turf for a three-quarter-length win over Tout Charmant, with German-based Catella another three-quarter length back in the 14-horse field. The winner was timed in 2:13.
“With that win today, she should be the champion mare in America this year,” said Bailey, referring to the 4-year-old Perfect Sting, winner of six starts in 2000.
Spanish Fern, ridden by Victor Espinoza and trained by Bobby Frankel, was pulled up shortly after the start.
Kalanisi, based in England and owned by Aga Khan, charged from seventh place with a quarter mile left in the 1 1/2-mile turf and edged Quiet Resolve by a nose. John’s Call, a 9-year-old gelding and oldest Breeders’ Cup starter ever, finished another nose back, a head in front of Mutamam in the 13-horse field.
Kalanisi, ridden by John Murtagh, won in 2:26 4/5.