Space Blues Rockets To Lead In Late Stretch To Take Breeders’ Cup Mile

In the last race of his career, Space Blues (IRE) goes out a winner in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Mile at Del Mar Thoroughbred Club in Del Mar, Calif. After a delayed start, the Godolphin bred and owned horse overtook frontrunner Smooth Like Strait in the final furlong to win by a half-length.

Space Blues was one of two Godolphin runners sent postward in a full field of 14 for the Mile, but Master of the Seas, in post one, reared up in the gate twice, hitting his head on an overhead bar. With that, much like Friday’s incident with Albahr in the Juvenile Turf, Master of the Seas was a late scratch, leaving only Space Blues to contest in the blue silks.

“Yeah, well, we, Yogi said it best. It’s deja vu all over again. About the time you don’t think something can happen just come around the next day. Certainly didn’t see this coming,” Godolphin racing manager Jimmy Bell said in the post-race press conference. “But as William and Charlie both say, we got to appreciate these horses. This is a live situation and these things happen. It’s a part of the race. We all hate to see these things but it just goes to show you that there’s just so many uncontrollable events.

After the field reloaded, the break was a clean one, with Smooth Like Strait going to the lead in the race’s opening strides, with Blowout and Space Blues running second and third. After a first quarter in :23.51 and the half mile in :47.38, Smooth Like Strait maintained a one-length lead down the backstretch, with Space Blues and William Buick on the rail in third.

On the far turn, Buick moved Space Blues to the outside, as Smooth Like Strait looked poised to go wire to wire. The Godolphin horse turned on the jets midstretch and wore down Smooth Like Strait to win by a half-length. Ivar came on to finish third, with Raging Bull fourth.

The final time was 1:34.12. Find this race’s chart here.

Space Blues paid $6.20, $4.60. and $3.40. Smooth Like Strait paid $9.00 and $6.20. Ivar paid $11.40.

“I’m absolutely delighted. He’s been a fantastic horse and will now be retired to stud. William gave him a great ride in the perfect position throughout. Space Blues has been a great servant and it’s another well-deserved win. I’m thrilled for team Godolphin both here and back home at Moulton Paddocks in Newmarket and obviously His Highness Sheikh Mohammed. It was an interesting race beforehand with Master of The Seas being scratched but we’re getting used to that now! Rules are rules and we have to abide by them,” said trainer Charles Appleby after the Mile.

“Coming here I knew I had some very good rides. Space Blues traveled to America very well and Charlie has been delighted with all of our horses coming into the races. We know how tough it is to come here and everything needs to pan out for you to win. He’s a great little horse and I don’t think he’s had the recognition he deserves. A mile round here suits him down to the ground. I was a bit nervous going into the race as I wanted to give the horse what he deserved,” winning jockey William Buick told the Del Mar Press Office after the race.

As for Master of the Seas, Appleby gave an update on the colt’s condition: “Master Of The Seas is fine and James is fine. And I say deja vu, so I’m getting used to this sort of speech now, but the most important thing is he came back safe.

Space Blues is by Dubawi (IRE) out of the Noverre mare Miss Lucifer (FR). The 5-year-old horse has four wins in six starts in 2021, including the Group 1 Prix de la Foret at Longchamp in France and the Group 2 City of York Stakes at York in England, for a lifetime record of 11 wins in 19 starts and career earnings of $2,585,725.

The post Space Blues Rockets To Lead In Late Stretch To Take Breeders’ Cup Mile appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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