With the Breeders’ Cup less than a month away, Kentucky-breds had an outstanding first weekend of October, winning 10 different “Win and You’re In” races to assure themselves starting spots in the Nov. 1-2 Breeders’ Cup.
Among the ten winners were five Grade 1 winners, topped by Omaha Beach’s gutsy performance in the Santa Anita Sprint Championship (G1). Omaha Beach, who scratched from the Kentucky Derby (G1) as the morning line favorite, won at Santa Anita in his first start against older horses. The War Front colt, bred by Charming Syndicate, won the Arkansas Derby (G1) this spring and is now guaranteed a spot in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1), but could also run in the Dirt Mile or Classic, both Grade 1s, according to his trainer Richard Mandella.
Other top-echelon winners over the weekend include British Idiom, who earned her way into the Juvenile Fillies (G1) with her win in the Alcibiades (G1). The Flashack filly, bred by Hargus & Sandra Sexton and Silver Fern Farm, is undefeated in two starts.
Wicked Whisper also earned a spot in the Juvenile Fillies with a win in Belmont Park’s Frizette (G1) on Sunday. Bred by Siena Farm, the filly’s dam Zayanna also produced this year’s Black Eyed Susan S. (G2) winner Point of Honor.
Maxfield’s win in the Breeders’ Futurity (G1), also at Keeneland, set the Street Sense colt for the Juvenile (G1). The Godolphin homebred is out of Velvety, who dam is a half-sister to Sky Mesa, who also won the Breeders’ Futurity.
Turf veteran Bowie’s Hero punched his ticket to the Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) with a victory in the Shadwell Turf Mile (G1) at Keeneland, his second Grade 1 success and fourth graded win overall. He is a son of 2005 Breeders’ Cup Mile winner Artie Schiller and bred by Pope McLean, Pope McLean, Jr. and Marc McLean.