Bar Of Gold Shocks Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprinters At 60-1

Chester and Mary Broman’s homebred Bar of Gold came with a late rush from near the back of the field in Saturday’s Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint at Del Mar, nosing out Ami’s Mesa at the wire for her first graded stakes victory. Trainer John C. Kimmel celebrated his first Grade 1 win since 2006 when he saddled the 5-year-old daughter of Medaglia d’Oro in the Breeders’ Cup, and jockey Irad Ortiz, Jr. celebrated his third win in the World Championships. Bar of Gold completed seven furlongs on the fast main track in 1:22.63 and payed $135.40 on a $2 bet. Even-money favorite Unique Bella finished seventh in the field of 14 after leading at the quarter pole.

“We knew it was in there somewhere. She pulled it out at the right moment,” Kimmel said. “She’s brushed on greatness a few times, and she’s gotten better as the years have gone on. Her last race (Juddmonte Spinster at Keeneland) was weird. At the track it had been raining all day and she really didn’t break sharp and was wide. It was really just a throw-out. We were all confused about whether we were going to come out here, but then we got her back to New York (from Kentucky) and she had a couple of breezes that were really impressive. Irad (Ortiz, Jr.) said she felt great. I wouldn’t have come out here if Irad couldn’t ride the horse, so when he told me he was open, I said ‘Let’s go. Let’s give it a shot.’ She is getting to the end of her career and here we are. I’ve always liked horses cutting back in distance, especially in a sprint, and a seven-eighths sprint. I’ve won the Test a couple of times with that tactic. She showed up today, and Irad gave her a great, great trip.”

In a bit tight in the first sixteenth of a mile, Ortiz took hold of Bar of Gold to ease her back near the rear of the field in third-from-last. She kept her position on the inside but several paths off the rail down the backstretch, eating dirt but with plenty of racing room. On the front end, Mike Smith let Unique Bella have her head while tracked by Princess Karen through a first quarter in :21.84. Defending champion Finest City was up close, as were Finley’sluckycharm and Highway Star.

In the turn, Ortiz took to urging Bar of Gold with every third stride, slowly building her momentum as he began passing rivals about three paths from the rail. He waited to angle her to the center of the track until the head of the stretch, saving as much ground as possible.

Meanwhile, Mike Smith had Unique Bella coasting on nearly a two length lead nearing the quarter pole, but the filly suddenly dropped back. Skye Diamonds was moving, as was Ami’s Mesa, the latter of which took over at the top of the lane.

Ortiz kept up his rhythm in the stretch, timing his run perfectly to hit the wire a nose ahead of the hard-trying Ami’s Mesa. Carina Mia had gotten through on the inside, but came up a length short when she tired in the final 100 yards. Skye Diamonds finished fourth.

“I got a perfect trip,” said the winning Ortiz. “She broke good, put me in good position and I just saved her. She made a good run on the inside and when I took her to the outside, she responded pretty good.”

The race favorite Unique Bella faded to seventh.

“She went so quick early,” said her Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith. “I guess it was too much to ask (today). She never really folded though. If I could have done something different, maybe I would have taken back a little farther, but the game plan was to go. At the top of the stretch, I was done.”

Bred in New York by her owners out of a Grade 3-winning daughter of Lemon Drop Kid. A third-generation homebred, Bar of Gold’s granddam was purchased by the Bromans at the 2000 Keeneland January sale, when the unraced Storm Cat mare covered by Mr. Prospector commanded $1 million. Bar of Gold broke her maiden at Saratoga on first asking, but took until her 4-year-old season to earn a stakes win. Most recently Bar of Gold had been running long, save a second-place finish in a 6 1/2-furlong sprint at Presque Isle two starts back. Shortened up to seven furlongs, the mare found the winner’s circle in the Breeders’ Cup to improve her record to seven wins, seven seconds and four fourths. Bar of Gold has now earned $1,551,000.

The post Bar Of Gold Shocks Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprinters At 60-1 appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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