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Nov 07, 2014

Untapable captures Breeders' Cup Distaff


Arcadia, CA ( - The 31st edition of the Breeders' Cup World Championships got underway Friday at Santa Anita Park, highlighted by Untapable and Goldencents posting victories as favorites.

Leading 3-year-old filly Untapable, trained by Steve Asmussen, rallied through the stretch to win the $2 million Breeders' Cup Distaff to cap the first day of racing with 37,205 in attendance.

Ridden by her usual jockey Rosie Napravnik, Untapable raced wide through much of the 1 1/8-mile race. Sent off as the 8-5 favorite in the 11-horse field, Untapable drew along side Iotapa for the lead on the final turn.

Untapable, winner of this year's Kentucky Oaks, took the lead at the top of the stretch and was clearly the best horse. The filly posted a 1 1/4-length win over 6-1 third pick Don't Tell Sophia.

"She's so amazing," Napravnik said immediately after the win. The jockey later announced her retirement from riding to start a family with her husband.

Finishing third was Iotapa followed by 2013 Juvenile Fillies winner Ria Antonia, 50-1 longshot Unbridled Forever, Tiz Midnight, Stanwyck, Valiant Emilia, Belle Gallantey, L'Amour de Ma Vie and 3-1 second pick Close Hatches.

Last year's winner Beholder, a two-time Eclipse Award winner, was unable to defend her crown after recently spiking a fever.

Untapable covered the 1 1/8 miles in 1:48.68 on a fast track.

Owned by Winchell Thoroughbreds, Untapable earned $1.1 million with the win and reaches $3 million in career earnings. The filly has won eight of 11 lifetime starts, six of seven this year.

Untapable returned $5.20, $3.40 and $2.60. Don't Tell Sophia paid $4.60 and $3.40, and Iotapa paid $4.00 to show.

Goldencents successfully defended his title in the eighth running of the $1 million Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile, becoming the first two-time winner of the event.

Trained by Leandro Mora, substituting for the suspended Doug O'Neill, and ridden by Rafael Bejarano, Goldencents was pressed on the lead by 3-year-old Vicar's in Trouble in the nine-horse field. The defending champ put away the colt on the final turn and was able to withstand a challenge down the stretch by Tapiture.

Owned by W.C. Racing, Goldencents registered a 1 1/4-length win over Tapiture.

"I knew I was going fast and I had to find a way to give him a little break from the three-eighths to the quarter-pole. I was able to do that. When the other horse started to come to me, I held onto him just a little bit before I turned him loose. When I turned him loose, he fired big," Bejarano noted.

Pants On Fire was third followed by Bronzo, Big Bane Theory, Carve, Fed Biz, Golden Ticket and Vicar's in Trouble. Handsome Mike was scratched.

Goldencents covered the mile in 1:35.16, .04 seconds off last year's victory.

Goldencents picks up $550,000 with the win. The 4-year-old colt has earned more than $3 million with seven wins and seven seconds in 18 career starts.

Last year, Goldencents also set the pace and went on to get a 2 3/4-length win over 2012 Travers co-winner Golden Ticket.

Goldencents paid $3.40, $2.60 and $2.10. Tapiture returned $3.80 and $3.00, and Pants On Fire paid $4.00 to show.

In the two turf races for 2-year-olds, Hootenanny and Lady Eli registered wins.

Hootenanny, ridden by Frankie Dettori, ran past pacesetter Luck of the Kitten down the stretch to win the $1 million Juvenile Turf to begin Friday's championship races.

Trained by Wesley Ward, Hootenanny was racing third, just a few lengths behind Luck of the Kitten in the mile turf race. Hootenanny drove through the stretch to catch the leader nearing the wire and post a three-quarters length victory over Luck of the Kitten.

"It was my first time on him but I had seen him run in England, so I knew his style. He wasn't pulling. I got him settled. When I turned him on, I knew I had the race," said Dettori.

Finishing third in the 14-horse field was Daddy D T followed by Conquest Typhoon, Faithful Creek, Lawn Ranger, Commemorative, Danny Boy, International Star, Imperia, Startup Nation, War Envoy, Offering Plan and Wet Sail.

Hootenanny, owned by Mrs. John Magnier, Michael Tabor and Derrick Smith, covered the mile in 1:34.79 over a firm turf course.

Dettori recorded his third win in the Juvenile Turf since it was added to the Breeders' Cup program in 2007. The veteran jockey from Europe won the race in 2008 and 2009.

Hootenanny adds $550,000 to his bankroll. The 2-year-old colt has won three of five starts with a second and a third for $751,985.

He won his debut race at Keeneland in April followed by a third in a Pimlico stakes on May 16. The colt was shipped to England where he won a stakes at Ascot and got second in a sprint in France.

Hootenanny returned $14.00, $7.80 and $5.60. Luck of the Kitten paid $9.20 and $7.00, Daddy D T paid $11.00 to show.

Lady Eli, ridden by Irad Ortiz Jr., turned it on down the stretch to capture the $1 million Juvenile Fillies Turf.

Lady Eli, one of four horses in the race trained by Chad Brown, stalked the pace being set by Sunset Glow in the 13-horse field of 2-year-old fillies. Owned by Sheep Pond Partners, Lady Eli drew even with Sunset Glow coming out of the final turn and then turn it on down the stretch.

Lady Eli, undefeated in three starts, cruised to a 2 3/4-length win over Sunset Glow.

"It was really good. I got a perfect trip and can't complain," Ortiz said.

Finishing third was Osaila followed by Prize Exhibit, Sivoliere, Partisan Politics, Tammy the Torpedo, Qualify, Rainha Da Bateria, Quality Rocks, Conquest Harlanate, Isabella Sings and Nicky's Brown Miss. Lady Zuzu was scratched at the gate after acting up.

The time for the mile was 1:33.41 on a firm turf course.

The win was worth $550,000 as the 2-1 favorite notched her largest margin of victory. Lady Eli has now banked $719,800 in her three starts.

Lady Eli returned $6.80, $4.20 and $3.00. Sunset Glow paid $5.20 and $3.40, and Osaila paid $3.60 to show.


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