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Oct 10, 2014

Shared Belief has slim lead over Wise Dan


New York, NY ( - Shared Belief and Wise Dan are separated by a mere seven points at the top of the NTRA Thoroughbred Poll.

Sitting atop of the rankings for a second straight week is Eclipse Award winning 3-year-old gelding Shared Belief. Winner of the recent Awesome Again Stakes, Shared Belief received 19 first-place votes and 420 points with less than four weeks until the Breeders' Cup.

"He finished the race strong and he had to work for it after being taken out (wide)," jockey Mike Smith said concerning Shared Belief's Awesome Again effort. "But he came out of the race good. I just went to see him. He ate up, he's happy, so all's good. Sometimes a good race like that will put more in him."

In second-place with 24 top votes and 413 points is two-time Horse of the Year Wise Dan coming off a win in Saturday's Shadwell Turf Mile.

"He did what we thought he would do," trainer Charlie LoPresti said. "He was primed to run a big race. He's America's horse."

Moving up a spot in the rankings are Tonalist (291), California Chrome (1, 249), Main Sequence (211), Bayern (171) and Untapable (166).

Dropping five rungs to eighth is previous unbeaten 4-year-old filly Close Hatches, who received 156 points. The filly finished fourth behind Don't Tell Sophia in Sunday's Spinster Stakes at Keeneland.

"We'll have to wait a week or two and see how she's doing," said Garrett O'Rourke of Juddmonte Farms. "She owes us nothing for the year we've had with her. It would be nice to get to the Breeders' Cup and give her a shot at the championship."

Champion filly Beholder (102) and Palace Malice (53) round out the top 10.

The National Poll continues through the Breeders' Cup on Nov. 1.

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